Here at LBi we’ve just launched the campaign to promote D&AD New Blood’s 10th Anniversary exhibition, at the end of June. Its been a labour of love, something that I’m really proud of for the best (in my opinion) and most important part of the charity.
This campaign is about getting industry down to New Blood to support graduating students. First off don’t let’s forget the message here – we’re trying to build our collective future. New Blood has been suffering from growing apathy amongst us agency-types for a while now. In the last downturn, internships and placements just evaporated for graduates. For a few years students stepped out into an industry that just wasn’t paying attention. These graduates went elsewhere, and as anyone trying to find mid/senior talent, particularly in digital, can attest to – the whole industry lost out, and work has suffered for it. Its our collective responsibility to grow one of the most dynamic and amazing industries out there.
For the campaign we wanted to try to get us all off our arses (or out of them) and take a minute to think about what New Blood is all about, where we might have been 10 years ago, and to make a personal pledge to give these new talents the support that they deserve: there’s no denying its going to be really tough for them out there.
The hero photos represent only a small part of this campaign, but a lead that we hoped would put New Blood on the industry radar again, and cause some intense discussion about why its so important.The images are tongue-in-cheek but the message they contain is seriously important. The point is that these people aren’t the seven most important people at the event, its the students, and its also each person that stops navel-gazing and actually contributes to its success.
These industry ‘icons’ were selected because they are actively helping New Blood already, offering their scant time (extra big thanks to Nadav) and profile to help get the conversation going, and who have committed to the New Blood event – they are the first step towards creating some solidarity with our brightest young stars by challenging you to do more yourself. And it’s working.
For those that haven’t seen the whole campaign, please check it out. For those lucky enough to be judging D&AD professional and student awards this year, there was a booth set up (using the 2 of 2006’s Best New Blood Winners – David Horwich & Paul Mansley) where everyone could pledge their support… and of course the hub of activity is that everyone is encouraged to upload their own photos or video committing to being at the event. “I’ll be there”.
We’ll also be asking agencies to use their prime window real estate to create their own statements of support – a lot of us have the best street-level ad space in our areas.
On top of that we’re providing free space for all students to have a web presence within the same matrix, and a great digital system for tagging your favourite work at the event, so that all that fiddling about with trying to contact your favourite future teams afterwards is as painless as possible.
So please, take a moment to think about what it was like when you were entering an industry with your vivid optimism and desire to do what we all do every day intact – and pledge your support.
We’ve caused a lot of controversy and discussion with this campaign; the more voices we get online, the more those you don’t agree with will be drowned out by the noise of the industry pulling together.