Monthly Archives: January 2007
Are you Elfing kidding me?
Here’s what’s wrong with marketing today: The tacticians are pushing out the strategists.
Measure, measure, measure is taking over for common sense, sense, sense. Big strategic branding ideas are being replaced by campaign management, ROI, and marketing metric dashboard mania. Pay per click? Please. Our ADD society is being fueled legions of marketing people who only see today and next quarter.
Big branding ideas take time to build, to take hold, to burst forth from the seed. Tacticians don’t have time for that.
Campaigns come and go but a powerful branding idea is indelible.
Is copywriting a lost art today? You betcha. And it is very sad.
I forgot who once said “That’s not writing, that’s typing.” but he summed up pretty well what’s going on today in copy. Many copywriters think their job is done when the facts are communicated. Perhaps with humor. Maybe even using the parlance of the target. Certainly with nice cadence and tempo. However, more often than not, they are not intoxicating the consumer with persuasion and truly creating disposition toward purchase.
Real copywriters can do this. The good ones still do. And the really good ones should be paid millions.
As a kid in the advertising business I was once dressed down by McCann Erickson’s creative director for making a minor copy change to the call-to-action on an ad. In front of the copywriter, who apparently ratted me out, I was told in no uncertain terms never to change copy. I guess it would “f” up the art, the gestalt, the continuity. (She was right, of course.)
Anyway, if an account manager with intimate knowledge of the client and consumer can’t couldn’t change a word or two, why in the world would we cede control over the entire message to a consumer? Cessation of message control to consumers is going to send our already reeling business even further down the rabbit hole. As it has with Network TV. We’ve ceded control of TV to consumers, to a degree, by going the reality TV route.
It all will get better, but we’re in for a rocky couple of years.
Peace one (whatever that means.)
One of my favorite David Ogilvy quotes is, and I paraphrase, “Our business is infected by people who have never sold a thing in their lives.”
It is so true. I would venture to say 80% of the advertising product out in the media today is “creative for creative’s sake.” It’s not about communicating a unique product value, it’s about getting people to stop and pay attention. Even worse than that is what I call “We’re here!” advertising. Basically “We’re here”! ads simply tells consumers what you sell and where to buy it.
I can’t read the newspaper without seeing this lazy crap.
If you find someone who really understands advertising and the craft of selling, don’t let him or her go. They are a dying breed.