Professional Master Course in Brand Strategy


If you are interested in future editions sign up here

APPLICATION PERIOD: Until all vacancies are filled.
LIMITED VACANCIES: The course is limited to 20 attendees.



Strategic planning is more important than ever in the current high competitive, rapidly changing and culturally demanding context where brands fight every day to be relevant and distinctive. On top of that, the evasive audience and the continuous media fragmentation have made the strategist role even more important. Thus, it is not a surprise that strategy is today one of the most demanded roles in the advertising and communication industry.

In addition to this, the old approach to strategy that is still taught in some universities and creative schools is not relevant and adapted to the daily challenges brands face on their daily basis.

For these reasons, at HOALA we believe that the training of a strategist (or any professional working with brands) must be continuously updated and provided by the most qualified and renowned strategic minds in the world, to deliver an unbeatable, modern and mind-blowing training experience.


The objective of this course is not only to provide you with a powerful strategic theory base, but also with a vast practical knowledge focused on the actual day-to-day tasks of a strategist.

Each one of the 11 top-notch lecturers included in the program have been tasked to develop 11 tailor-made contemporary and insightful strategic sessions based on the most important topics for strategists today.

The obsession behind these sessions is to provide you with a set of skills that will help your profile to evolve into: a strategist with a collection of tools and deep intuition to identify and solve brand communication problems; a communication professional able to transform the information from the research phase into insightful inputs that accelerate and inspire the creativity process; a brand expert able to read the new media landscape and the new way brands have to start and maintain conversations with consumers in the digital arena; an ideas communicator that inspire work teams and clients, strategic planners that deeply understand consumers giving a special weight to research and investigation to detect insights and, last but not least, a hard-worker enthusiast, truly passionate about constantly learning and growing.

On top of that, and in addition to the online sessions, in this online edition we have added 2 one-to-one private sessions with the 2 lecturers of your choice, so you can ask the questions you always wanted to ask, to solve the doubts you always wanted to solve and to receive the mentoring you need from the best strategists in the world.


The course is structured through 11 online sessions where world-class strategy leaders will provide you with theoretical and practical knowledge, as well as their professional experience with the brands they work today and have worked for in the past.

In addition to this, and as we explained above, these online sessions will be complemented with 2 online one-to-one private sessions with the lecturers of your choice. This selection will be done in strict signing order as each lecturer has a limited number of sessions they can be part of.

The course has an online format, so you will be able to combine the course with your professional duties. The weekly sessions will be 3 hours long and will be run on Fridays afternoon, from 17:00-20:00 hrs, CET.

Conscious of time differences and depending on where in the world the lecturer is at, the Hoala Amstedam team can carry out modifications that will be communicated beforehand to all the attendees.

Besides the class hours and if the lecturer considers so, you can be requested to develop some work during the week such as reading articles or books, prepare briefs or conduct small research.


Strategic planners, account executives, creatives, designers, communication directors, brand managers and professionals who need a solid strategic thinking to develop their work. And in general, to any intuitive person, with experience in the creative industry, communication and/or advertising field that is open-minded, willing to learn, want to live a new learning experience and is fearless to the unknown and the new.
It is not a mandatory to hold a university degree to attend this course.


At Hoala we firmly believe in your active involvement during the sessions as the most effective way to learn strategy. We don’t support a “monologue/conference” style where you adopt a passive role and the lecturer is the only one who talks. Therefore, at Hoala we place debates and discussions at the very center of the learning process. That is why the selection will be done based on what kind of experience, inputs and motivation you can add to the group and to the debates every week.
Thus, at Hoala we are not after the best CV, the biggest amount of awards or the highest achievements. Not even after years and years of practice in strategy and communication. Our only goal is to secure high-level discussions and debates during each and every session. And that can only be accomplished with attendees that accumulate certain experience in the brand communication business as well as having the right personality and motivation.
Previous editions have always showed us that the quality of a course is not only about offering a content program run by world-class lecturers. Learning brand strategy is also about having the right attendees that can spark good debates and discussions and can challenge the lecturers.


You will be ready to shine at any brand or marketing department, strategic planning department at advertising agencies, media agencies, digital agencies, branding, strategy consultants and, in general, at any brand communication related position.


We believe there is not a magic formula to teach or learn strategy. The idea of what strategy is will be built from your own experience and blended with the world’s best strategists’ opinions, experience and points of view. And that is what we bring to you – the best strategy minds in the world with the best experience and knowledge about strategy.


To continue with the personalized and premium training style that Hoala is world famous for, we will complement the training experience with 2 one-to-one private sessions for each attendee. Choose the 2 lecturers you would like to talk with and prepare those questions you have always wanted to ask. Get ready to receive guidance, tips, formed opinions and uncomfortable answers!


Enjoy of a truly international environment with students and lecturers from every corner of the world. Since the first Hoala Amsterdam edition, attendees from 30+ different countries worldwide have joined us, bringing their unique and valuable experiences and point of views with them.


Becoming a member of the Hoala family comes with a great extra benefit - you will be part of the Hoala's global community of passionate strategists and enjoy of an open access to the Hoala's library of documents from all the previous Hoala Amsterdam editions. There is also a Hoala private Slack group where all the attendees from previous editions are part of. There are tons and tons of inspiration and help in that amazing place.


This course is only aimed at professionals that already have demonstrated experience in the brand communications arena.


The course is limited to 20 people. We believe that having a reduced size will make it easier for you to feel confident to speak up your mind and receive a personalized attention by each lecturer. The class might be small in size, but huge in the decision to create a difference with the best brand strategy program there is out there.

Professional Master Course in Brand Strategy. Online Edition.
Content Program

11 tailor-made sessions to provide you with a powerful and updated strategic theory base, together with a vast practical implementation focused on the actual day-to-day strategic tasks.

Unique one-to-one private sessions
With the world's greatest planners
Small group



13th September

Martin Weigel on Account Planning - What planning is and it is not about.
A strategy for strategy - the insightful vision from one of the most respected international planners in the world about the actual role of planning in agencies, clients and brands and about what being a planner actually means today.

Lecturer: Martin Weigel, Head of Planning at Wieden+Kennedy Amsterdam.

16th September

The positioning strategy: past, present and future.
How to position a brand today? The role of purpose in the positioning strategy. Find the real difference for a brand. Positioning toolbox. The role of the positioning strategy within brand management. Case studies and examples.

Lecturer: Tom Suharto, Head of Strategy at Forsman&Bodenfors, New York.

23rd September

Unearth and discover the best insights.
Use research and investigation techniques to discover the best insights. What is and what is not an insight. What we should expect from insights and how can they unlock creativity. How research is approached at the best international agencies. Case studies and examples.

Lecturer: Lucy Jameson, Founder at Uncommon London.

30th September

Cultural Strategy: navigate the intersection between people and culture to build truly relevant brands.
How culture can be the most powerful element to make a brand relevant. Consumers and culture. How to detect waves and cultural movements and connect them with brands. Anthropologic and sociologic dimension of consumption. Case studies.

Lecturer: Rob Campbell, Chief Strategy Officer at Colenso BBDO New Zealand.

7th October

Creatives vs. Strategists - Strategy looked from the eyes of creativity.
What a creative needs from a planner and what a planner needs from a creative under the eyes of one of the most successful creative directors in the world.

Lecturer: Caprice Yu, Executive Creative Director at Cityblock Health, New York.

21st October

Experience Strategy - How and why include experience in your brand planning.
What if anything can the digital age teach us when creating brand strategies and should strategies refer only to communication or take the leap into Experience? The role of technology in all of this and why design thinking may be the answer.

Lecturer: Bogdana Butnar, Growth & Experience Strategy Practice Lead, Accenture Interactive, London.

28th October

How to write the perfect and most inspiring creative brief.The planner as the catalyst of creativity. The real value of a creative brief. How to write better and more inspiring creative briefs. The main mistakes when we write briefs. Presenting your creative brief: the briefing session. Examples and case studies.

Lecturer: Harry Roman, Chief Strategy Officer at Droga5 New York.

4th November

Communications Planning - the complete guide.
How to detect, prioritize and activate the touch points between brands and consumers. Brand planners s. Comms planners. Design the perfect KPI’s for the campaigns. The Consumer journey. Communications framework. Examples, tools and case studies.

Lecturer: Michael Goldstein, Marketing Advisor at Jewish Food Society, New York.

11th November

Diversity and inclusion: from lip service to effective strategy.
We will explore the challenges, answer your questions, but most importantly, identify the ingredients for planning and strategic thinking for successful engagement internally and externally around representation of race, ethnicity, religion and inclusion more generally.

Lecturer: Shelina Janmohhamed, Vice President, Islamic Marketing, Ogilvy, London.

WEEK 10:
18th November

The art of presenting a strategy.
How to successfully present a strategy to clients. Strategy best practices. Case Studies, tips and examples.

Lecturer: Marcus Collins, Head of planning at Wieden+Kennedy New York.

WEEK 11:
25th November

Effectiveness as the key ingredient for strategic planning.
The science behind effectiveness. How to judge and reach effectiveness for a brand. Planning as the key for effectiveness. How to build an unbeatable effectiveness case. Examples and case studies.

Lecturer: Toby Harrison, Chief Strategy Officer at Ogilvy Australia.

*The dates of the sessions are subject to change dependent on the schedule of the lecturers

* In the case of the course not reaching the minimum amount of needed qualified attendees or any other important logistic issues, Hoala will be entitled to change the dates of the course up to 15 days before the date of start. In that case, Hoala will refund entirely the enrollment money paid by every attendee. Hoala will not be responsible for any other expenses the attendee might have had until that moment. In the case of an accepted attendee being interested in attending the next edition of the course, Hoala will keep her/his seat blocked and reserved.

If you are interested in future editions sign up here

PRICE: Total cost of the course: 3.500 €.
Enrollment: 500 € (this payment will secure your spot in the course. This amount is not refundable and will be deducted from the total course cost).
LIMITED VACANCIES: The course is limited to 20 attendees.
APPLICATION PERIOD: Until all vacancies are filled.



  • The HOALA Master in Account Planning made me remember how comfortable my current situation is and how nice it is to get out of that comfort zone again. In addition to this, the different international backgrounds of both students and lecturers benefit the course and the work you do together a lot.
    Anouke Jansen, Content & Community Manager at DDB Amsterdam
  • The Amsterdam Hoala Master Course in Account Planning gave our international class of 16 people an insight into 11 of the most interesting careers you can find in planning. A truly career changing experience for me. Now let's hope I can share such awesomeness in 20 years time myself.
    Sytse Kooistra, Senior Brand Planner at Isobar
  • As a young, somewhat inexperienced planner, I applied to this Master to get advice and tips on how to approach account planning. Initially, I mainly expected practical tools. Although I have learned some tools, the Master has taught me so much more. It has given me a broader view of the philosophy behind advertising, where the industry is going and what role an account planner can play in this. This is a result of 11 weeks of being inspired by and listening to some of the best planners in the world, but also the interactions with the highly talented other planners that participated the Master. It has been one hell of a ride. No matter how experienced you are, don't miss out on the opportunity of participating in this Master!
    Jeroen Senden, Strategy Manager at FHV BBDO
  • How better to learn than in collaboration with practitioners from some of the best agencies, brands and campaigns in the world? What I hadn’t appreciated until I attended was the value of learning from my fellow attendees (now friends) who came from agencies big and small, networked and independent from across the world. Not only do you learn and discuss the latest thinking in planning but also about how different agencies configure themselves and their work. The Hoala experience offers something far deeper than listening to the blogs or attending conferences where the course leaders are speaking, it delivers real small group learning and the opportunity to really interrogate, discuss and inform yourself in a very effective way.
    Margaret Gilsenan, Partner and Head of Strategy at Boys & Girls LTD, Dublin.
  • Since I first heard about Hoala`s Masterclass I became obsessed in attending it. My main intention was to find the differences among all those different markets and agencies where the lecturers came from. What might be their secrets? Do they have a personal approach? There`s a formula to create awesome plans? Well, this was my expectation. In practice, it was not (only) about techniques, but how to master "advertising", as a whole. What works and what doesn`t. In the end, it changed completely the way I think about "brand building" and strategy. Learning with the best is a one-in-a-life experience, so if you are in doubt about attending Hoala, just do it .
    Jorge Gloss, Co-founder de Buenas!, Brazil.


Professional Master Course in Account Planning, Amsterdam, 2019.

Professional Master Course in Account Planning, Amsterdam, 2019.