Thanks for the mem­o­ries

Campaign UK - - NEWS - claire.beale@hay­mar­ket.com @claire­beale

Wel­come to the last weekly is­sue of Cam­paign.

Writ­ing that line has been a prospect for years now. The rein­ven­tion of any weekly news-led busi­ness mag­a­zine stopped be­ing an “if” and be­came a “when” a long time ago. Cam­paign was able to hold out longer than most.

What comes next for Cam­paign – a bumper new brand port­fo­lio, bet­ter tai­lored to what our au­di­ence wants, when and where they want it – is gen­uinely a leap for­ward; and rein­ven­tion is al­ways an ex­cit­ing mo­ment. We’ve al­ready got a dy­namic daily news ser­vice on Cam­paign­live.co.uk, fast ap­proach­ing a mil­lion uniques a month and dwarf­ing the loyal but com­par­a­tively mod­est fan base of the weekly mag­a­zine. We’re de­but­ing an in-depth monthly mag­a­zine in Septem­ber that will be a more dis­tinct ac­com­pa­ni­ment to our on­line and mo­bile of­fers and a bet­ter com­pan­ion to our live events, video chan­nel, pod­cast and on and on.

So we’re mov­ing smartly on with a vig­or­ous am­bi­tion.

But I’m not go­ing to pre­tend that, in the process, we’re not all los­ing some­thing spe­cial: Cam­paign’s front page.

No doubt about it: for 49 years, the mag­a­zine’s front page helped make the in­dus­try im­por­tant – and be­cause the in­dus­try was im­por­tant, Cam­paign’s front page was im­por­tant. The front-page span of news – al­most al­ways ex­clu­sive, of­ten sur­pris­ing, some­times shock­ing – set the in­dus­try agenda ev­ery Thurs­day and be­yond. A great front­page head­line would an­nounce a ma­jor ac­count re­view. Or that com­pa­nies were merg­ing. Or clos­ing. Or launch­ing. The front page was where ca­reers were made. And some­times killed. It’s where bril­liant work was un­veiled. And it’s where the in­dus­try’s darker side was oc­ca­sion­ally ex­posed.

But the front page of Cam­paign was al­ways re­ally about peo­ple. For al­most five decades, it was the place where the peo­ple who shaped the in­dus­try were seen do­ing their shap­ing. It anointed the best and gave them a plat­form to prove it. And it called peo­ple to ac­count. It cre­ated he­roes, some­times mon­sters, and, at its best, it was ev­ery bit as thrilling as the in­dus­try it cham­pi­oned.

De­liv­er­ing all of this weekly be­came a lot harder once news be­came dig­i­tal and im­me­di­ate. We’ve con­tin­ued to pub­lish a blind­ing front page more of­ten than not, but news be­longs on­line now. And, as the ad in­dus­try has ma­tured, so has its news. I adore those old, daz­zling front-page head­lines, and they re­flect an ex­hil­a­rat­ing pe­riod in ad­land’s his­tory. But the world and the in­dus­try and Cam­paign have moved on.

Move on or die. But take a mo­ment or two to mourn the pass­ing of some­thing great and read our fea­ture on page 52 this week. It helped make our in­dus­try spe­cial.

CLAIRE BEALE Global edi­tor-in-chief

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