Wednesday, 9 October 2019


Instagram thinks I’m a woman. I’m not sure how that started. Perhaps the algorithm made a horribly sexist assumption because I follow quite a lot of fashion and art and accounts like Gurls Talk and gal-dem… no idea. But I know it doesn’t think I’m a bloke, because it serves me ads for menstrual cups, shapewear, lipstick, etc.

I’ve definitely made the algorithm double down on this assumption. That’s because the total irrelevance of these ads gives them stopping power, my curiosity takes over and I end up watching the whole thing. And presumably the algorithm decides I’m a hot prospect.

This got me thinking. Maybe contextual relevance (for making creative) is a massive error. Sure, for media buying it makes a lot of sense, in the end I won’t be buying any of these misplaced products. But I’m starting to think that ads for products I might buy need to be contextually irrelevant to get noticed. Or is that just a wanky way of saying ads need cut-through?

Lemme know your thoughts @LucianTrester

Monday, 19 August 2019


1. The product doesn't look premium.

2. There is no human insight.

3. There is no customer benefit.

4. There is no call to action.

5. There is no brand purpose.

6. There should be a hashtag so people can join the conversation.

7. There is no reason to believe.

8.  It's category generic.

9. Not consistent with the rest of the Chanel brand world.

10. No integrated user journey.

The list could go on.... and yet they are (in my not-humble opinion) as close to perfect as ads can get.

Sadly I've seen great work die at the hands of every single one of those reasons. Why? Because people are so desperate for advertising to be a formula they will kill anything that doesn't fit into their narrow view.

The moral of the story, sometimes great advertising doesn't fit into your rules. So fuck your rules.