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Planning. What's it all about then?

Published on Thursday, 20th July 2017, contributed by Prophecy Unlimited

Could you answer the question, 'What should our brand do next?'

Since merging The Real Adventure and EMO to create Prophecy Unlimited, we’ve been mulling over how we planners define ourselves and our role in the agency. We’ve dug out our old Stephen King papers, we’ve gone back to the time we interviewed Jon Steel, we’ve even ploughed through the several billion SlideShare decks on the subject, but no snappy definition has stuck.

We’d hit a wall and we asked ourselves, 'What should we do next?' And it clicked.

We’re the folk who help brands figure out what to do next. We’re the experts at sourcing the right information, filtering it down to killer insights and coming up with a battle plan. (Of course, then all the really smart people get involved and turn it into something, tangible or digital.)

Plenty of people think they can do this. They’ve got the latest Cannes case studies. They know all the latest buzzwords. They’ve got their PPE. They’re convinced about the importance of brand purpose for any and every brand (or is it porpoise?). They’re not interested in numbers or effectiveness, dude, they can just observe from coffee shops in Soho. They’ve had thoughts, y’know?

Well, we like thoughts, but we’re mainly interested in facts.

Genuine human insights.

Effective brand experiences.

Our planners start with what they know. Then, and only then, do they get to what they think. Why shouldn’t they? The surge in available data has meant the traditional (and oft-abused) role of Planning to look for observable human behaviours has shifted to a focus on quantified human behaviour. This isn’t about marketing tracking or direct marketing, this is about being able to back up your hypothesis about consumers, business and psychology with data and facts. For the first time, being interesting and being right aren’t mutually exclusive.

Which leaves us with a nice problem to have. The approach is proving to be a success and as we gain new clients they increase the demands on the team. We’re looking to build the team – we need more planners.

Think you could help us? Think you can help brands answer the question, ‘What should we do next?’ If so, we’ve got some great roles available across the entire range of Planning experience levels; if you see anything you like get in touch. Alternatively, if you just want to have a chat (or even an argument), pop in and see us at our Bristol office or tap me up on Twitter.

The roles

The Planning team

We’re currently a team of six (with requirements for many more), sitting within the wider Strategy Department alongside Performance Planning, Data Planning and Insight & Analytics. We’re the agency specialists in the areas of consumer psychology, advertising and marketing, data analytics, customer acquisition and retention, brand engagement, e-commerce and marketing effectiveness.

The Planning team works across the agency to develop brand and communication strategies and design innovative solutions, tools and campaigns to support a variety of challenges across business sectors. We’re mainly responsible for planning integrated online and offline communications across all customer touchpoints, from cold prospecting to long term retention, as well as research and evaluation.


The Planning team works across most of the agencies clients, with emphasis on:

  • Aptamil
  • Asda
  • Costa
  • Cow & Gate
  • Danone
  • Lexus
  • Rolls Royce
  • Toyota


We’re based in central Bristol, right next to the main train station, so you can either enjoy a city-life or commute from a beach-town, the Cotswolds or Wales among other places.

Bristol is the best place to live in Britain 2017

Described as ‘a small city that feels like a big city’, Bristol has been named as the UK’s most desirable location in The Sunday Times Best Places to Live Guide 2017. It was praised for being ‘handily placed for seaside and scenery’ but ‘hardly cut off’.

Bristol is in the top 10 cities to live anywhere in the world

Not content with being just best in the UK, Bristol has been named as one of the top ten cities worldwide by Forever Sports magazine, ranking alongside the likes of Tokyo, Amsterdam, Berlin and Barcelona. Living in Bristol is ‘on a par with life in New York or Melbourne’.

Just saying.