Super Strategist: The Art and Science of Modern Account Planning is the only modern guide to advertising’s arguably most vital discipline, that has been written with the passion of someone who’s found their calling and the wisdom of an industry veteran who is still actively leading strategy in a large, modern, full-service agency. Super Strategist is full of practical advice for newcomers and usable strategies and insights for experienced planners, or anyone with an interest in the discipline. Readers will find clear outlines of the role of account planners within an agency, including step-by-step plans to achieve success with clients large and small: how to conduct modern consumer research, develop and implement the creative brief, use data skillfully to protect and improve great work, and use all of these tools and more to influence the feather in the planner’s cap—the customer journey.
Whether it’s called account planning, brand planning, strategic planning, or creative strategy, the goal is the same: to inspire brilliant work that is backed by rigor and data. Creative is still king, but in today’s fractured markets clients need to know their multi-million-dollar campaigns are supported by up-to-the-minute research and data-driven insights. Account planners ensure, as Douglas Atkins puts it in the foreword, that the work is idea-led, but consumer-informed. To find that perfect balance of art and science, the successful account planner is “X-shaped”: experienced in digital, social, communications and brand strategy, comfortable in creative and quantitative disciplines—a Super Strategist who is the fulcrum of any successful agency.