Each Friday in The Wrap, one of the North’s leading media and creative figures will be giving us their take on the news covered by Prolific North over the last seven days.

This week it’s the turn of : Ruth Shearn, managing director of RMS PR, a full-service marketing agency based in Altrincham.

2016 will undoubtedly go down in history as the year the world went crazy.  First Brexit and now the US Presidential election. Isolationist policies seem to be the new order of the day.

Which is why it was especially heartening to read that Manchester’s inward investment agency MIDAS and Deloitte have organised a delegation to India in a bid to attract top performing IT companies to our city. Hands across the water and all that.

shearnManchester can certainly lay claim to being the most dynamic and vibrant city in the UK and our reputation as a centre of excellence for technology continues to grow. The knock-on effects of such initiatives ultimately benefit everyone in business, irrespective of their sector. Forget Silicone Valley, let’s toast Salford Valley.

I’ve spent many years in marketing and have seen the evolution of print and online media transform the way we receive news and information. To read that independent news website Blog Preston has launched a print edition was both surprising and heart-warming.

The world is fixated on digital delivery and as I sit each morning unsubscribing or blocking a deluge of digital communications, I do wonder whether we’ll ever reach saturation point. Perhaps Blog Preston is the start of a pendulum swing. I salute them for bucking the trend and wish them well in their bid to reach as many local people as possible.

As the world famous Manchester markets spring to life this week, you can’t escape the fact that Christmas is fast approaching. Which inevitably heralds the launch of the much-hyped and eagerly anticipated Christmas TV ads.

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My take on… Where are the north’s Silicon Cities?

John Lewis has gone for a bouncy dog this year, while DFS and Aldi have embraced characters to promote their wares (Kevin the Carrot in Aldi’s case).

I particularly like the DFS campaign which features animated puppets produced by Wallace and Gromit creator Aardman.

Based on actual employees, the characters give the brand a warm personality while delivering the message that DFS products are handmade. (We recently created a character for one of our clients – a Jeremy Corbyn bollard – but it didn’t have quite the same warm and cuddly effect!)

If you’re feeling a bit bah humbug about the festive season, perhaps you should read this excellent piece about BBC Radio 4’s The Media Show throwing away the rule book to change its usual running order. I’ll say no more.

To be considered as a contributor for The Wrap, email david@prolificnorth.co.uk.