Friday, November 07, 2003

Ad blather

This "gem" of a quote came from this article:"The problem with most marketing is that it has been perverted by creative people whose goal is not to sell products but to produce advertising that wins awards."
Oh please. A couple months ago while waiting in a line at a book signing, I thumbed through a few books while standing in the "marketing" section of the bookstore. I happened to pick up this guys "Your Marketing Sucks" book and when I read, "If you have an advertising agency that applies for any kind of an award (Clios, whatever), fire them immediately. They shouldn’t be in the business to win ego awards for beautiful ads. They should be creating ads that sell. Period! If they talk about building “mind share,” fire them immediately as well. That’s just another way of saying they’ll camouflage their failure to generate sales behind an intellectual smoke screen." (quote from the book is on It made me laugh out loud.
I don't disagree that advertising has to do some work, and does need to be more than just pretty images, creative copy and all that. But, to tell people to fire their agency for entering in awards shows? Seems a bit dramatic and over the edge to me. Besides, entering and winning awards creates free press for the company. Think Honda Cog, think Ikea Lamp, and even Volkswagen's numberous ads. The client that doesn't realize that an agency also needs to create press for itself is stupid. Not only that, but agencies that win awards attract the top talent, because they want to work at the better places. Which means better people working on the clients accounts. Not only that but, many agencies look at the awards on by the creatives to see how good they are. It's a measure of their skills by their peers (more or less, yea this can be argued too but generally it's true.) The author of this "book" claims that a good ad would be the Walmart Smiley face ads. Um, sure. Since the economy went down the toilet it seems that there has been a lot of advertising bashing coming from PR and marketing folk. And it all seems to me that because there's less money being put into the marketing and advertising areas, there's more people fighting over who gets that money. Companies start to wonder if they should just stick with advertising, or promotions, or PR rather than do multiple layers as they had been doing. All it does is create angst among the various parties. And that's not good for anyone's business. I'm sick of hearing that pr works better than advertising and yadda yadda. It's not true and if they show you figures, well figures can show you anything you want them to.

From the NYT: The Pepsi-Cola Company division of PepsiCo said yesterday that it would replace "The joy of Pepsi," its advertising theme since 2000, with "Pepsi. It's the cola," beginning with commercials set to appear around Thanksgiving. Dave DeCecco, a spokesman at the Pepsi-Cola North America division of Pepsi-Cola in Purchase, N.Y., confirmed reports of the decision this week in and Adweek. "We're having a really successful year," Mr. DeCecco said, "and want to bring some of that momentum to brand Pepsi." The new campaign, like its predecessors, will be created by the longtime Pepsi-Cola agency, BBDO Worldwide in New York, part of the Omnicom Group. The initial commercials will focus on promoting that Pepsi-Cola goes well with food. "The joy of Pepsi" replaced a similar theme, "The joy of cola," which was introduced in 1999. Coca-Cola changed ad themes in January, replacing "Enjoy" with "Coca-Cola . . . Real."

Baby Spice, um, I mean Emma Bunton will be one of the celebs appearing in holiday ads for Mark & Spencer. Emma will be Cinderella in lingerie, Will Young plays a handsome prince who fights his way into Sleeping Beauty's bedroom only to find her quilt more attractive than her lips, Evil Queen Zoe Wanamaker asks the mirror on her wall who's the fairest of them all, and gets the answer: "I am - but I do love your shawl," and June Sarpong distracts a hungry wolf with champagne and roast turkey as Red Riding Hood. The ads are narrated by Patrick Stewart.

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