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The Influencers

Why Competition Catalyses Creativity

INFLUENCER: Heads Up Production’s Tim Page and Jody Allison discuss why stiff competition isn’t a bad thing when it comes to getting the best creative output

Why Competition Catalyses Creativity

With increasing pressure on the industry to provide brands with more content within the same or even diminishing budget, agencies are rapidly trying to adapt to fit the bill, seeing traditional production models carved into two avenues – in-house and independent. Integrated production at agency and brand level is most certainly on the rise – ultimately trying to provide more for less. But, as with any challenger vying to become top dog, fierce competition comes from the rest of the pack. And the industry is hungry. 

The great thing about the rise of in-house offerings and integrated production is that it is pushing the external shops to continually do better. The competition is tough and that drives creativity. When advertisers throw out a potential juicy steak of a project, external companies won’t rest on their creative laurels. 

In a landscape of uncertainty, where nothing is to be taken for granted and no next job guaranteed, every project must be fought tooth and nail. Any business working in the open creative marketplace is only ever as good as its last job, and that drives a determination to impress. The brightest and the best are continually pushing the limits of their creative thinking and ideas, finding new ways to make the best work they’ve ever done. 

Now is the time for advertisers to be taking advantage of this. Having worked in agency production for the past twenty years, we can steadfastly say that the open creative marketplace is our greatest resource. It’s where you’ll find the boldest, most challenging and original thinking alongside the most competitive value ever.  

At the end of the day, everyone wants to make good work and the range of what we need to produce for clients as an industry is expanding. More content for ever more targeted audiences surely means that there’s no one size fits all production solution. For advertisers to be making quality, impactful work, they need to be broadening their creative options, not narrowing them down.

That’s not to say that there isn’t a place for in-house solutions. For projects requiring speed, and bulk value or multiple versioning, going in-house can certainly be effective. But we defy anyone who says you’ll continue to get the freshest creative thinking from a company that isn’t being challenged by competition and external voices of reason.

Our industry is home to some of the most brilliant minds. We pride ourselves on our ability to birth new ideas and discover new ways of engaging people. We reward those who dream, take risks, and raise the bar for us all. A competitive marketplace and healthy bidding process encourages diversity of ideas. The creativity is out there – why limit yourself?



Tim Page & Jody Allison are Producers & Co-Founders of Heads Up Production