1. 2022 is the year of?
Challenges. Huge media inflation, declining audiences against the backdrop of falling consumer confidence, inflation and a reduction in disposable income, makes for a challenging year.

2. Who is your hero from the marketing and advertising world? Why?
It has to be Les Binet and Peter Field. Their work on the long and short of it was transformational making sense of what most felt, just needed the proof.

3. What was the last attention grabbing ad your saw that made you buy something?
I’m not generally influenced by advertising is what advertisers feel compelled to say. However Hotel Chocolat ran a radio campaign at the start of the year promoting their Velvetiser.  It emotionally had me hooked, which is odd given im not really a hot chocolate lover but just had to buy one!

4. What’s your all time favourite advert/campaign and why?
For this I have to go old school, its those iconic ads I remember from my formative years; R Whites Lemonade, not only was it my favorite drink by I remember my dad doing the dance, childhood memories!

5. If you had to choose which one would it be - day WFH or day in the office?
I equally like both depending on what the day has in store, but I think working out of our agencies offices helps shake things up a bit.

6. What keeps you awake at night?
I’m really lucky, I have the ability to nod off the second my head hits the pillow, and working for a bed retailer that must be testament to the quality of our products.. I probably should have said prepping for this presentation.

The obvious requirement for a good night's sleep - a great bed.

7. 2022 is the year of the Metaverse, (apparently) - will you be an early adopter or a cynical onlooker?
I see it more as an evolution as we evolve digitally, COVID accelerated things, a little over two years ago if someone said the majority of meetings would happen virtually nobody would have believed. I wrote my dissertation back in 1995 on technology in the retail industry, looking at the future world of home shopping; - an idea I was told that would never happen! Nowadays try and find someone who hasn’t bought online! So its evolution, set about to make consumer lives and business lives easier, better and efficient.

8. Which brand, part from your own, inspires you?
Probably a cliché but I am a big Apple fan. Their very early advertising was genius, simple and transformational. But, for me its all about making tasks simpler and finding solutions to deliver against that which I like best.

9. What’s the biggest opportunity in marketing and advertising right now?
Everyday represents a new opportunity, its ever changing and that’s what makes it so exciting. But in my mind 2022 is the year of “attention” level insight and looking at how different channels deliver significantly different attention led CPM opposed to reach led CPM.

10. Which (emerging) trend or innovation of 2021 will have the greatest impact on the industry in 2022 and beyond?
I’ll answer that, once I have seen the outputs from Madfest!

11. What would you most like to change about the ad industry?
It has to be transparency, there are far too many walled gardens, too much smoke & mirrors and ultimately just too many questions left unanswered. If everything came together life would be a much happier place as far as planning goes.

12. What are you speaking about at Attention@MAD//Fest in July?
The hottest topic of the moment…Attention!

Simon will be speaking on the ATTENTION@MAD//Fest stage on 6th July