Students at Buckinghamshire New University in the UK are to begin studying the history of the media industry through ‘The Media Men’ papers, first published on M&M Global.
Serialised earlier this year, ‘The Media Men’ offers first-hand accounts of how media planning and buying separated from full service advertising agencies in the 1970s and 80s. It includes chapters written by MediaCom founder Allan Rich, Starcom founder Jack Klues, and Zenith Media founder John Perriss.
Vic Davies, a senior lecturer at the university’s business school, is to incorporate the materials into teaching within the Faculty of Design, Media & Management.
The papers will be used within a second-year module called ‘The Media Business’, as background reading to enable students to see how media in the industry began its journey from ‘back office to front of house’.
They will also feature prominently as part of a module for final year students entitled ‘Strategic Agency Management’, looking at how agencies have changed since the 1950s.
“These papers show how a group of young men, mainly British, set out to move media out of the back office and make it front-centre”
“We have decided to use the Media Men pieces on our course because they describe a key, perhaps some might say pivotal, change in the history of the advertising industry,” Davies told M&M Global.
“Whilst the creative content always grabs the glamour, the media budget was and is where the bulk of an advertisers budget is spent, and, by the 1970s, as the worldwide economy got tougher and the consumer more difficult to engage, making the right decisions about what media to choose and what price you paid for it became vital.
“These papers show how a group of young men, mainly British, set out to move media out of the back office and make it front-centre, altering the industry business model and along the way helping to develop ideas on research and measurement and creating the global media agencies of today. They are also great stories of how to set up and start a business from scratch, to create a whole new industry sector.
“For students they therefore provide a historic background as to how the industry is structured the way it is today, why media is vital in the advertising process and how to take an idea aligned with a passion for that idea and create, not just a business or a new sector, but history.”