Well! That was a treat!
The title of Trevor’s talk for the evening as “What is the Big Idea?”. His answer? In advertising there is no big idea, just lots of little ideas that can contribute to a big idea.
It was a talk full of laughs and interesting takes on the advertising industry. It felt like a collection of some of his favourite pictures and videos that he had put together into a presentation while on the train up from London (which he claimed it was).
I’d been warned that he might be a difficult person to interview, but he was warm, lively, open and unprententious. I suppose it wouldn’t be hard to imagine a fiery Irish temper under it all somewhere, but I saw none of it.
I’ve got to save the bulk of what he said for a article for The Post next week. But Stef (who seems to be in a pre-emptive mood) has posted a summary of the answer to his question here and below are answers to the other questions.
But first, a special mention for Jon Bounds and Birmingham: It’s Not Shit, which – unprompted – Trevor bought up during the interview.
He got introduced to the site by another guy from Birmingham who works at his agency BMB and he thinks it’s a great site! He knows all about why it was set up (failed Capital of Culture bid which Trevor worked on). He is a regular reader and a very proud Brummie.
“Of course you can advertise a city, don’t be daft. That’s a silly thing to say. Next question!
“But seriously, you can, but its not up to me to do it – it’s up to everyone and we have to be more arrogant about Birmingham. I can keep shouting the message, but everyone else needs to be doing it too.”
Prem1um’s Answer: I’m afraid I got your question a bit mixed up and asked for the first four, which were: balti, race, humour and Balsall Heath (where he was born).
“I am very proud of Balsall Heath – 56 Brighton Road was where I grew up. Everyone in my business knows where I come from.
“All these cities that talk about multiculturalism. Manchester, Leeds, Liverpool – they’re not multicultural. London is now, but Birmingham invented it.
“When I was growing up in Balsall Heath in the 1970s it was just the way it was. On my road there was my family of Irish Brummies, then next door there was Halal butcher Brummie, across the road there were Jamaican Brummies and a bit further down there was some Pakistani Brummies. That’s how I grew up.”