Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Keep it simple (and interesting) stupid

About two weeks ago, Dave Trott was giving a talk to some media folks about creativity.

An article, "Simple may be out of fashion but its the way forward", shared some of his points that he blogs and writes about.

His point of the talk was that the message remains more important than the medium.

Creatives, he said, weren’t producing the goods as they should, partly because they were completely confused about what they were supposed to be doing: content, ideation, transcreation, narrowcasting and all the rest of it. All these were driven by technology and the belief, mistaken in Trott’s eyes, that new means of distribution – media – require a different kind of message.

Trott is right on the money. The problem is that many folks are making money by obfuscating the process and inclusion of new technologies. Yes, new tech can be a part of the process and end result, but it is not the idea. It's not the connection. It's not the story (unless your brand's story is about tech). Human truths have not changed. We still all want to belong, to be unique, to be loved, to be successful, to have our dreams come true. Technology hasn't changed our wants and dreams as much as it's changed how we can achieve these things (or complain about them).

On the same theme of ‘simple is best’ Trott also pointed to survey information that purported to show that four per cent of UK ads were ‘remembered positively,’ seven per cent recalled less than positively and 89 per cent completely ignored. In an £18.3bn ad market this was a lot of waste, he opined, before moving to a classic Trott exposition on how to get noticed – be different, essentially.
This really gets me. Billions are poured into advertising that isn't effective mostly because it's so samey and dull it is forgotten or ignored. Brands that aren't afraid to have a personality, stand for something, and/or know who they are will succeed.

Both of these are basics. We're hurting ourselves as an industry by getting away from them and obscuring them with lingo and fluff.

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