By Madi Mucha
“We don’t like to say 'no' to clients. We say 'yes, and…' It’s always our job to give options,” says Rachel Fuller, an Executive Director in Print Production.
When I hear the word “production” what usually comes to mind is film, video and photography. But in the advertising industry, production means so much more than that. As a producer, you want to be able to do everything you can for the client, so you will try your best to bring their vision to life within the budget and scope of the project.
IBM Blockchain Barista by Ogilvy
A recent project that the production team worked on was the IBM Blockchain Barista stall, the activation taking place in NYC. IBM wanted to create an immersive experience for its consumers, showcasing the process from the moment the seeds are planted in the soil to the moment a cup of coffee reaches your hands. The team had been collaborating on the project for several months, pulling in as much creative insight and content as possible. It took a lot of planning and teamwork to accomplish, but it turned out to be amazing!
Production is split into three sections: pre-production, production and post-production. Pre-production is all about idea generation, timelines and budgeting. Production is the actual shooting of the activation. And post-production involves revisions from client feedback and final approvals, along with generating content for editorials.
The two main types of production are Print and Digital. Print is not the typical print ads you’re thinking of – it includes billboards, banner ads, murals on buildings, station dominations, DM packages, tchotchkes and okay yes, the typical magazine and newspaper ads as well. Digital is a lot more technically involved and includes websites and apps, interactive installations at events, AR/VR, chat bots with AI, emerging technology and more.
What does it take to be a producer?
Oftentimes, producers will outsource partners for creative work – this is a huge part of their job. Victoria Onuzuruike, a 2017 Associate who rotated through production, suggested that if you’re interested in this field and line of work, you should start looking into brands you like now! When you see an ad you like, look up who made it and keep their name in mind for future projects. Plus, when a particular shoot needs a certain tone or style, you can pull a name out of the ones you already know.
I'm sure you're still wondering, "But, what does it really take to be a producer?" Rachel Fuller stressed, “you need to be organized and always thinking about all the spokes that come together and prioritize them.” She also mentioned several of the daily responsibilities, including fleshing out the scope, leading your team, fostering excellence, delivering on time, managing and organizational skills and mastering the art of quick thinking and problem-solving. In a producer role, you become the middle man between the account and the creative teams, so you always need to be on top of your work.
Production isn’t easy. But, if you have the proper mindset and skills up your sleeve, you will surely stand out among others in the industry.