JUNE | THE COLUMNISTS
and incentives ...
Make an event a movement
Jonathan Emmins, founder,
Amplify Inventive incentives
Josephine Burns, chair, Without
Walls Shedding inhibitions
Simeon Aldred, group creative
director, Vibration Group
We’re lucky to work for some of
the most progressive and forward-
thinking brands all over the world.
When the agency started 10 years
ago we were applying this approach
predominantly youth focused B2C
brands including Nike, Converse,
Red Bull and PlayStation. And back
then, we actually had the reputation
as a bit of an East End rave agency.
Fast forward to 2019 and we’re
using the same culture first
approach, we are just as likely to
be working on Advertising Week
for Google as AirMax day for Nike.
And sadly now, a little older, we’re
desperately clinging on to that
reputation as a bit of an East End
A B2B audience’s ability to
influence change and their
commercial value is often
significantly higher than B2C, yet
often misses out on the respect and
glory. For creatives, marketers and
event organisers the true to test of
whether we’re doing our job is how
far we can shift the dial; launching
something where there was
nothing, leading a real behaviour
change... and shifting units.
And today anyone can be an
influencer. When we’re working
with Google one of the first
questions they ask is: ‘Which
audience or audiences can most
influence that change’
Read in full at accessaa.co.uk Here’s a recent headline from a
Lyn Gardner article in the Stage:
UK talent isn’t less inventive than
European – just worse off. There’s
a whole box of frogs in this (I’ll
come back to the one about money
another day) but the big-daddy
frog contention is that the UK
invests significantly less money in
crucial bits of art-making – debate,
reflection, incubating concepts,
testing risky ideas.
While often true, it may not just
be about money. The UK model
has a more programme-based
approach, focused on ‘putting on
the show,’ getting it in front of the
audience, often driven by grant-
When Without Walls became
an Arts Council National Portfolio
Organisation last year, we
established an R&D programme,
Blueprint, to respond to demand. In
the last two years, we’ve invested
£300,000 in 33 projects, triple the
budget we’d eked out between 2012-
2015, the last time we’d been able to
invest at all! And still, this nowhere
near meets demand.
Some Blueprint projects will
be commissioned, by us and/or
by others, but the intention is to
let artists explore ideas without
producing a fully-realised show.
That’s how invention happens –
when the pressure is off comes
moments of inspiration. Accessibility at our venues has
always been a massive challenge.
Vibration Group and our venue
brands Venue Lab and Broadwick
Venues are famous for opening
new places in found industrial
environments that have complex
architecture, not designed to be
DDA compliant at all, never mind
operating in the realms of best
practice. These environments
therefore come with some massive
challenges for our guests with
The only solution for us is to have
a proactive team that manage all
aspects of access at our culture
venues. The basics are easy: ramps,
low bars, accessible toilets and
changing facilities, but can you give
these guests the feeling of being in
the midst of the crowd in a 5,000
capacity electronic show?
The answer is yes. Don’t remove
them from the action on a viewing
platform, give these guests options.
‘People not Production’ is the
answer in my view. Have an access
team that your guests can check
in and out with across the night
to ensure they have escorts to the
places they want to go and when.
If they want to go anywhere other
guests can go, make it happen.
Employing a team that understands
guest experience is a must.