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Play as a competitive advantage

12 July, 2012


JWT report explores role of purposeless activity in a productivity-obsessed world

NEW YORK — In its July trend report, JWT, the world’s best-known marketing communications brand, spotlights the increasing importance of play in today’s productivity-obsessed world.

“In an age when people feel they can’t spare time for pursuits that don’t have specific goals attached, there will be a growing realization that unstructured time begets more imagination, creativity and innovation—all competitive advantages,” says Ann Mack, director of trendspotting for JWT.

This report examines the varied benefits of play and outlines the impediments to play in our always-on culture. It spotlights how companies are injecting the idea of play into their business models and how marketers are promoting adult play in their messaging. It also includes the results of a survey that explored how people feel about the role of play in their lives.

“Play As a Competitive Advantage” is the result of research conducted by JWTIntelligence throughout the year. Specifically for this report, JWTIntelligence surveyed 503 Americans and 503 Britons aged 18-plus using SONAR™, JWT’s proprietary online tool. We also interviewed experts and influencers about the importance of play.

Half of respondents to JWT’s survey said they don’t have time for play just for fun’s sake. Says Mack: “Play is a vital human activity, but in these fast-paced times, adults are pushed to age out of it. The paradox is that purposeless activity can ultimately help us get ahead.”

To download the full report, click here. Additional knowledge and research on includes recent trend reports on food, music, second-screen marketing, Gen Z, 10 Trends for 2013 and 100 Things to Watch in 2012.

Alyson Valpone
Global Communications
T: +1 212.210.8518

About JWT
JWT is the world’s best-known marketing communications brand. Headquartered in New York, JWT is a true global network with more than 200 offices in over 90 countries employing nearly 10,000 marketing professionals. JWT consistently ranks among the top agency networks in the world and continues a dominant presence in the industry by staying on the leading edge—from producing the first-ever TV commercial in 1939 to today, developing award-winning branded content for brands such as Johnson & Johnson, Diageo’s Smirnoff, Macy’s, Ford and HSBC. JWT embraces a “worldmade” philosophy, making things inspired by the world through blending technological innovation with international imagination. JWT has forged deep relationships with clients including Bayer, Bloomberg, Brand USA, Cadbury, Diageo, DTC, Ford, HSBC, Johnson & Johnson, Kellogg’s, Kimberly-Clark, Kraft, Nestlé, Nokia, Rolex, Royal Caribbean, Schick, Shell, Unilever, Vodafone and many others. JWT’s parent company is WPP (NASDAQ: WPPGY). For more information, please visit and follow us @JWT_Worldwide.

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