Welcome to an audio-led edition of Unmade.
Today’s edition features a conversation with Matt Cooper, founder and CEO of global advertising archiving website and community, Little Black Book. He admits to be perplexed by the negativity of some of adland’s old guard.
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Little Black Book founder Matt Cooper on creating ‘an archive to the world’ and adland’s unnecessary snark
Matt Cooper, the UK-based founder of Little Black Book, has been in Australia to talk about the advertising archive’s push into APAC.
Cooper, who began his advertising career in 1988 in the mailroom of Saatchi & Saatchi before joining legendary post production house The Mill, has been involved in chronicling adland’s output for decades.
He was behind the archiving and asset management tool Beam TV before founding Little Black Book in 2010. LBB has grown from a simple source of advertising output, to an editorially-led global news platform and creative industry fame factory.
In conversation with Unmade’s Tim Burrowes, Cooper discusses the revamped version of the LBB site, the story of how his site briefly came under the Australian ownership of AdStream, and its Immortal Awards, which are currently under way.
With a membership model, Cooper aims to create a single source of advertising archive that the industry can refer to to understand what was going on globally and locally.
LBB members include agencies and networks DDB, McCann, FCB, Leo Burnett, Grey, TBWA, BBDO and Droga5, as well as some of the world’s top production and post production companies. Members join LBB so that they can grow profiles of key staff, maintain a portfolio of their work, and keep up to date with creative suppliers to work with.
“What fascinates me is talking about the archive”, says Cooper. “I love to talk about this stuff. You know, most agencies are really bad at this stuff. Most production companies are really bad at this stuff. They don't understand the value of an archive and they lock it away. Our idea is to give it to the world."
“Our archive is not just about a place to store, but it's a place to educate. What we want to make sure is that people see all this great work, young people coming into the business, because it's all free to view. So there's no limit to what you can do there.”
After a period where it was repped locally by Campaign Brief, LBB expanded into the APAC region in 2022, where it is led by former PR operative Toby Hemming.
“I can almost guarantee you that we give more global views to this market than any other publication,” claims Cooper. “And the really interesting thing for us to get across to people is that we're not an echo chamber. What we've done is we've carefully constructed a business starting from the bottom up. So we went from post production to agency to brand. Our biggest reader is clients, by a country mile.”
The conversation also turned to the topic of the often toxic comments on sites including Campaign Brief. Cooper says that there is more snark in the local industry “by a mile”. He adds: “It’s so peculiar. It’s almost like people have thrived on it here.
“I believe that many of the people who make those comments aren’t even in the industry any more. It’s a bunch of older creative folk. It’s wild.
“It’s wrong. If you think about what we're doing now in our business, we're talking about mental health and saving the world. And you're all battering each other. I don't understand it.
“No one wakes up in the morning and thinks ‘I'm going to make a crap ad’. You put your heart and soul into it.
“So you see all this stuff and this negativity around… who's that helping?”
Tides of green across the Unmade Index
Seja Al Zaidi writes:
After losing 2.72% on Monday, the Unmade Index recovered most of that yesterday, gaining 2.23% to sit at 601.1 points.
Southern Cross Austereo and Seven had the steepest rise - 4.17% each - and Nine followed with a 3.42% lift in share price. Domain rose 0.90%, and Ooh Media 0.72%.
Sports Entertainment Group, owner of SEN, lifted 7.14%.
Enero Group dropped 4.46%, and ARN Media 2.13%.
Time to leave you to your Thursday.
Editing was courtesy of Abe’s Audio, the people to talk to about voiceovers, sound design and podcast production.
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