Magazine article Marketing

My Month: Dawn Paine

Magazine article Marketing

My Month: Dawn Paine

Article excerpt

Dawn Paine, vice-president, marketing, at Universal Pictures (UK), on a film screening with Simon Pegg and why it's important to be brave with creativity.

I love Christmas, always have. I love the run-in to it, the Coca-Cola spots, the ads with a bear and a hare, Christmas lights, my little boy's growing delirium and, of course, winter Saturday night TV; Strictly first, then Boardwalk Empire with maybe a sneaky peek at The X Factor.

I also love the intensity of the entertainment industry. For us in 'ents', Christmas is not for the faint-hearted. With a hefty chunk of our industry's annual profit being generated in just a few short months, it is both highly pressured and relentless in terms of the sheer amount of product we release. December saw the roll-out of more than 10 different stand-up comedy titles on one day and we followed that with the biggest movies of the year, Despicable Me 2 and The World's End, on DVD and Blu-ray.

But I shouldn't grumble. This is also an industry where we get to do some really cool stuff. In December, I attended a special screening of The World's End followed by a Q&A with Simon Pegg and the director Edgar Wright. Thoroughly indulging my inner (and often outer) geek, it was fascinating to hear their insights and banter.

The same day, we had just shot one of our Christmas ads with Edgar to help keep our creative fresh and engaging. Our Christmas campaign, with black-and-white pieces to camera celebrating the DVD as the perfect Christmas gift, embodied what I am a passionate believer in: creating marketing that is different and surprising. Times are tough everywhere and you've just got to be brave and keep trying new things.

This was also one of the big themes from last year's Marketing Society Annual Conference - lots of great discussion and debate about how to create and encourage great ideas in business. As usual, there was a fantastic line-up of speakers. I particularly enjoyed fellow Scouser Sir Terry Leahy's articulation of creativity: 'Creativity is about seeing opportunities that others don't, through a different lens.' This is, of course, crucial. But the key requirement is how to drive and systematise that approach and to continue to have the confidence and bravery in driving through what you are passionate about and believe in. …

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