So when will we see advertising that works?

This article is part three of a three part series.

In the last two articles we have spoken about a few things that it takes to make advertising that works – well branded, effective advertising.  This knowledge is based on research conducted by academics around the world (including at the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute for Marketing Science in Adelaide, Australia).  So if this knowledge is available, when will we see it put into practice?

Creative agencies can have a reputation for creating advertising that is artistically beautiful and consequently wins industry awards (the majority of advertising awards being directed towards artistic and production talent, excluding the Effies). However these campaigns aren’t necessarily effective when it comes to changing the behaviour of the consumer.

In order for creative agencies to create effective advertising, two things need to occur: 1) the client needs to want it and 2) the agency needs to want to do it.  I’ll now address these points independently.

Firstly, the client signs off on every campaign; at the end of the day they are the ones who pay for it and therefore must be happy with it.  If the client appoints a new marketing manager and decides they need to change an existing distinctive asset, there is little the agency can do about it.  The client needs to be educated on how to make advertising effective.  But don’t forget the customer is always right! Brands often forget how little attention is paid to their advertising and don’t like to accept that, given how much they are investing. There is a level of education that needs to occur here and the agency isn’t always in the place to provide it.

Secondly, the agency needs to have a culture that stands by creating effective advertising.  In a smaller agency (without a strategy team) this needs to come right from management at the top and down to the account management team writing the briefs.  If the culture fosters effective advertising, effective advertising will be created.

Hopefully we see more effective advertising in the future.

Stay curious..

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