The new new

Interesting to find out (although I always knew deep down) that black is the new black (according to Jon Leach).

Several people also seem to be pointing out that old is the new new in advertising – both in terms of the before and after of mass media which Amelia and Steve (and Seth Godin) have been talking about, and tonight a fantastic set of speeches and discussions around the Account Planning Group’s book launch of the collected articles of Stephen King (the inventor of planning, who died in 2006).


All of the speakers kept coming back to the observation that many of King’s declarations from as far back as the 60s or 70s have a frightening similarity to the sorts of the things we are saying today, even down to the language including phrases such as ‘the changing nature of consumer attention means we must examine their relationship with the brand’. Indeed the book itself is subtitled ‘the timeless works of Stephen King’.

One thing really stuck in my mind. One of the panelists at the discussion at the end of the evening said that in the paper she was critiquing for the book (each paper has a summary by a modern day practitioner), Stephen King talks about the appropriateness of the title ‘account planner’.

It turns out the term was coined in a meeting on the basis that it was a cross between ‘account handler’ and ‘media planner’. King, apparently preferred the term ‘brand planner’ and had even suggested ‘brand designer’ as an alternative. Now there’s something that couldn’t be more relevant today.

(Sample of King’s work before the book comes out later this year).



  1. […] launch the landmark Stephen King retrospective on planning poses an similar question. What was King’s job (and Pollitt’s for that […]

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