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Project Spotlight: Advertising Futures

  • Written byChloe Murphy
  • Published date21 May 2021

The advertising landscape reflects and grows in parallel with the changing world around us. As demographics shift and diversify, and technology continues to develop at a rapid pace, advertisers must adapt and evolve in order to connect with audiences in creative, innovative and meaningful ways.

As part of their Advertising Futures unit, MA Advertising students at London College of Communication (LCC) recently collaborated with The Telegraph to develop a range of concepts aimed at promoting its Technology Intelligence channel as 'a brilliantly effective place to advertise [...] brands'.

Bringing together academic knowledge with imagination and creativity, they worked in small groups to develop and pitch their own speculative fictions which explored and envisioned potential avenues for a future-facing industry.

We caught up with students from one of the winning teams, Arnesia Ranggi, Faryaab Sheikh, Monica Kulkarni and Kristy Poh, to discuss how they developed their final concept, key roles and areas of specialism, and the importance of channeling their learning into practical projects.

The title slide of the group presentation by Arnesia, Faryaab, Monica and Kristy.

What was your brief for the project?

We were asked to create a speculative fiction that could attract advertisers to buy advertising space on The Telegraph’s website. This had to chime well with The Telegraph’s values, stand out from their competitors, and preferably relate to possible uses and functions of technology in the near future.

Tell us about your creative process – how did your team begin to develop your initial ideas into a pitch-able concept?

Well, our team sat through many rounds of brainstorming sessions. If you ask our module tutors, Paul and Seema, they’ll tell you we tried pitching every type of futuristic technology under the sun before arriving at the story we settled on in the end.

It also involved a lot of research, because not only did we want a thought-provoking piece, but we also wanted it to be realistic so that it grabs your attention, and makes you feel like the story that we had to tell, while speculative, is also absolutely possible.

What key roles did each of you play throughout the project?

At the beginning, as a team, we looked into the possible tech we could create our story around. In fact, most of our work was done together: from developing the storyline to deciding what went into the report and final pitch.

Unofficially, we more or less all took on roles that suited our individual areas of expertise:

  • Arnesia took on the role of storyboarding, and creating the backbone of what came to be our speculative fiction.
  • Faryaab was essentially our tech specialist - understanding tech and its current uses, and looking at possible industries we could explore and extrapolate this tech to.
  • Monica provided a lot of professional guidance due to her vast work experience such as pitch writing and techniques, and understanding what clients are looking for to tie the project all together.
  • Kristy managed the project as a whole, and worked on design elements such as illustrating our short graphic story and preparing the pitch deck.

Just like any team, we had our differences! As clichéd as it sounds, the differences we worked through helped us bring out the best possible version of our story.

Feedback from The Telegraph for the group project.

What were your project highlights?

When we finally created a story that sat in the perfect spot of absolutely possible and also not too far off in the future! That was a tough one to land, because we got so excited about the possibilities of future technologies that it really distracted us from creating a believable speculative fiction. But once we did, the rest of the project just fell into place!

How has the project helped you to put the lessons learned from MA Advertising into practice?

It has definitely helped us think outside the box, understand realistically what clients are looking for, and learn how to sell our ideas.

The opportunity to work on a brief with real clients was invaluable - it’s given us an insight into the industry, and has also helped us make crucial first connections.

What have you all enjoyed most about studying on the MA Advertising course at LCC?

Without a doubt, it’s the industry briefs. There’s no better way to get prepared for professional life than meeting the types of people you’d be working for.

It’s given us experience in a range of areas too - from planning and strategy to working on creative content across different types of media.

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