Wednesday, 15 May 2013

This might be a crazy idea…

We love making brave, exciting, innovative ads. Why?

Because it works. We know it in our hearts, we know it from our own experience and extensive research has proven that creatively awarded campaigns are much, much more effective than non awarded campaigns.1 They can even shape and become a part of popular culture.

We also know what will make a creatively awarded campaign. The work has got to be evocative. Emotional advertising is far more effective and profitable than rational advertising.2

So why is it that we make so much derivative and rational advertising? Why does everyone from Martin Weigel to David Droga think that the vast majority of what we make is shit?

Because making great advertising means taking risks. ‘Safe’ and rational (or crap) advertising is unfortunately often capable of meeting the short term sales and business objectives that pay our client’s wages and bonuses3. So most clients don’t often take that risk. Why would they? Would you?
And if we are being brutal, they don’t trust us enough to take that risk. Otherwise they would.

So how can we persuade them trust us, to take that risk and go from derivative and rational to brave and emotional?
I think it’s us that need to change.

I assume you said you’d be willing to take that risk. So here’s an idea then:
1. Clearly outline where you will be adding more financial payback with this new approach - be that an increase in volume sales, supporting higher prices, etc.
2. Outline exactly how this will be measured.
3. Raise your fee accordingly and offer to put 100% of it up against performance by results.4

That’ll stop your clients thinking you just want to make advertising that wins you awards, not the ‘hard working’ ads they need to sell stuff.
That’ll make you and your client one team both working to the exact same objectives.
Now you're better able to convince them to take a risk, to be innovative and daring and brave. Because you are willing to share the risk. Because you are demonstrating an absolute belief in your abilities.
That will also win you more of the clients you want. The ones who want to smash targets not just meet them.
That’ll make you truly different from every other agency in town. 
That’d be pretty brave, exciting and innovative.
1. IPA, How Share Of Voice Wins Market Share: New Findings from Nielsen / IPA
2. Binet and Field, Exploring Critical Factors In Effectiveness
3. Pete Buckley, Most Advertising Is Rubbish Because Rubbish Works
4. Simon Guillford, I wouldn’t Let A Planner Near My Boardroom

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