Building on a strong foundation


Back in February I sat my IPA foundation exam to gain a qualification which has helped me to better understand the advertising industry. I am pleased to say I passed with credit and learnt not only about my area of specialism (creative services), but the wider world of advertising from data and digital, to demand and display.

So, what did I discover? …

…Creativity in advertising involves challenging yourself and others to be better

We all know that creativity is a talent. But it is also a skill that can be developed and crafted. Creativity ability is balance between nature and nurture. With practise you can get better. There is no limit to your potential which is great news. Encouragement, collaboration and candid feedback help to push everyone’s ideas to the next level. They play a core role in creative success.

…Although technology changes, agency purpose remains the same

The point of an agency is to understand your clients’ business and give them expert insight whatever your specialism is in. Strong client relationships are at the centre of successful agencies and are just as essential as strategy or creativity. At Wordbird we champion this belief. Our purpose is to make it marvellously easy for everyone to say, ‘I get it’. By understanding brand and behaviour we can connect with clients and consumers alike.

…Moving with the times is paramount for success

In our modern world technology evolves at a rapid rate, you cannot afford to sit still. Capturing people’s attention is key in advertising and if you are not thinking of new and exciting ways to do it, you are not doing it. History has proven those who gain the most from change are the ones who do not fear it, but are able to profit from and embrace it.

…You need your work to work

Our goal is always to produce amazing campaigns and compelling content, but what are the fruits of our enduring efforts? Did our target audience take notice? Did we change behaviour?

The industry is always developing sophisticated ways to measure target audience response. Popular methods in our industry vary from hard measures such as brand perception to soft measures such as number of clicks/views. These markers are essential to ensure we are working for our clients in the most effective way.

…Everything comes down to decision

These key learnings I took home are just the tip of the iceberg in the beautiful and complex world of advertising. Beneath lies the science of behavioural economics, which aims to pinpoint human behaviour. To understand behavioural economics is to understand your audience. This is vital in health communications. For example, by tapping into the theory of loss aversion – people prefer to avoid losses rather than to acquire equivalent gains – we can change behaviour. It is easier to convince someone to protect their current state of health rather than improve it.

Looking forward

This qualification has taught me so much. I look forward to building on this foundation throughout my career. From producing compelling communications, to providing clients with Wordbird’s unique insight.

The opportunities for development are limitless.

Lynsey Downie

Junior Copywriter, and lover of learning