The power of the creative industries to shift the cultural narrative was another key theme of the day. Natalie Graeme, founder of Uncommon, shared the story of Uncommon’s own creative and cultural evolution, alongside showcasing the agency’s ground-breaking work for ITV. According to Graeme, both the culture of the agency and its creative work have been boosted by using a “wider lens” to take in and understand the human experience. This broad lens extends beyond just the work and into the agency’s own approach to diversity, having launched one of the very few majority-female owned and led creative agencies.
Pointing to its recent ‘More than TV’ campaign for ITV, which showcases the diversity and cultural currency of the broadcaster, Graeme highlighted the commercial and cultural benefits. “ITV is more than just a TV brand; it is a transformative force which can normalise sensitive subjects and challenge the status quo,” she added.
Frustration with that status quo can also be a furtive source for both change and creative cut-through when it comes to producing ground-breaking creative work. Sarah Douglas, CEO of AMV BBDO, lifted the lid on the emotional impact of Bodyform and Libresse’s ‘Blood Normal’ and ‘#VivaLaVulva’ work. “We won the work because we were pissed off with the stereotypes in the category showing women on roller skates. We were angry about representation and were angry about the pressure surrounding women.”
Nadja Lossgott, Creative Director at AMV BBDO, shared how hard the team fought to get the work made and to also hold onto the integrity of the idea. “The client was ready to lose her job over it. When you want to break taboos, you have to be prepared to lose something.”