Spin recently had the pleasure of sponsoring LEAD 2024, an event hosted by the AA, IPA and ISBA. It brought together the worlds of politics and advertising in a dialogue that was both timely and necessary. The event certainly surpassed our expectations, so I thought I’d share the ten key takeaways from the day:
- 2024 is a critical year. Over 2 billion people will be voting in elections this year, which has huge ramifications for the future of democracy.
- The UK isn’t in the best light at the moment, despite a 0.8% growth forecast, 90% of UK firms feel that the UK is a negative place to invest. Yes - you read that right.
- We are, however, the second-largest exporter of services in the world - something which I think often gets overlooked when we look at our key industries.
- Immigration, when viewed through a commercial rather than political lens, is a big issue - and many businesses are very worried about the new salary thresholds coming in April.
- The UK is one of the most ‘highly intense’ advertising markets in the world - very competitive and arguably over-saturated.
- “If you can’t charge a premium, you don’t have a brand” is a good way of summarising why advertising and brand matters, with point 5 in mind.
- Advertising, despite some negative impressions, is an essential cog in the free market to keep prices down (when all other prices are going up), allowing us access to news, content, and journalism.
- The UK ad market grew by 6% last year - worth noting in a time when it felt like budgets were being cut across the board.
- Gordon Brown, a man who I thought was dour, and to be honest, depressing politician, was probably the best public speaker I have ever seen in my life. Practice makes perfect.
- Creative industries are growing at twice the rate of the rest of the economy - so let’s give them more credit.
Reflecting on LEAD 2024, it's clear that this year marks a significant moment for the advertising industry. The discussions underscored the importance of not only driving economic prosperity but doing so in a manner that is trusted, inclusive, and sustainable.
As Spin, we're proud to have been part of such a forward-thinking event. Our commitment has always been to ensure that we contribute positively to the industry's evolution. Here’s to a year of embracing change, driving innovation, and building a future where advertising is a cornerstone of a prosperous, equitable society.