Ideas I Wish I’d Had, No.407,638.

I’m racking my brains for some business development ideas to help us rebuild our profile in the investment funds market, usually a main part of any “specialist” agency’s client base but for some while now a distressingly small part of ours.

I do have a couple of ideas, but sadly the best one I’ve heard for some while belongs to one of our competitors.  This other firm came up with the idea of looking back at the way the use of imagery has changed in investment marketing communications over a period of ten years or more, and then going on to speculate about where it may be going in the future.

And even more cleverly, they partnered on this initiative with the giant photo library Getty Images, which a) helped reduce the cost and b) I’m told, meant that the project was based around an exhibition of some of Getty’s most stunning images which made the whole thing really visual and sexy.

I suspect you may be thinking that this concept has an obvious flaw:  surely a presentation, or indeed exhibition, about the use of imagery in investment marketing communications will be not so much visual and sexy, but more short and uninspiring?  Apart from a couple of planets, a zebra and a mountain, what would it include?

To be honest, there’s a piece of information I’ve withheld from you: the agency behind this idea was in fact US-based, the New York investment specialists Wechsler Ross (  And although the use of imagery in US investment marcomms is a little less than kaleidoscopic in its variety and originality, it does extend some way beyond planets and zebras.

So in fact, on reflection, it might not have been such a good idea for this market.  Put it this way:  a presentation of the imagery that UK investment funds don’t ever use in their marcomms would be a very, very great deal more interesting than a presentation of the imagery they do.

Hang on a minute.  That sounds like an idea.  Where’s that phone number for Getty Images?

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