I know I keep linking to US Ad Age, but there is so much good content there I urge you to subscribe (they are not, by the way, an Edelman client but editor Jonah Bloom is a top bloke and an Englishman in New York). The latest piece to catch my eye claims that the Ad Age Agency of the Year is . . . . . The Consumer (an ironic homage to Time Magazine’s Person of the Year obviously).
A couple of quick points/reminders I saw in this:
– Mentos had a 15% sales spike in the period after those consumer videos about making rockets from bottle of Diet Coke and their chewy mints. So, we see a film about a mint that makes Diet Coke explode and we buy more . . . . .why? It’s stuff like this that makes brands so interesting. You can’t really map that on a spreadsheet or give a client a predictive assessment of ROI based on focus groups and qualitative benchmarking can you!
– Consumers are making more and more brand related content (good and bad) and distributing it themselves. Check!
– Though the end of the 30 second spot and and the ‘big shot creative director’ has been foretold by many for long (and I’ve taken the odd shot or two as well) they still exist. Are they learning and adapting or is it just death by a thousands uploads?
– The social media phenomena means that the advertising agencies are losing control of the strategic process if the big strategic idea (according to P&G amongst others) is “just let go” and trust the consumer.
For many brands (corporate and consumer) the right approach is to recognise that, sometimes, there is an inverse and opposite relationship between control and credibility. That’s a tough one to take and to digest for many companies and many people brought up on the years of ‘certainty’ that advertising promises for it banners and spots and I would argue is the biggest single reason some of the command and control methods of communication will be with us for a while. Inertia is a powerful force.
[tags]Ad Age, Mentos, Diet Coke[/tags]