Friday, January 30, 2009

Story-telling.


Today's client cliche, boys and girls, is the phrase "story-telling," as in "the ad should be story-telling, it should tell a story about our brand."

Of course, when you go to speak to the client they insist on powerpoint, the antithesis of story-telling and they want spider-graphs and inverted pyramids and factored fractorials. They want a linearity which story-telling often avoids. Also, they want no humor, no jokes, no sex, no laughter, no tears, no emotion, no drama, no pace, no crescendo, no build. BUT THEY WANT STORY-TELLING. Of course, they want in in small space, with four products, six lines of legal and the word "new" in bold.

Was it David Ogilvy who said that an ad must be more interesting than the media it's surrounded by? If he didn't he should have.

In any event, here is a link to Maira Kalman's story about the inauguration of Obama.
http://kalman.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/01/29/the-inauguration-at-last/

A thing of beauty.

2 comments:

Unknown said...

Here's a dirty little secret. Despite being in advertising I can't recall the last time I actually watched a TV spot or read an ad for any other reason than my professional interest in advertising. They don't make them like VW any longer. The ads that is. There are no stories drawing me in. I might be subliminally affected by outdoor. Due to it's clarity and simplicity perhaps. However, I never bought a car thanks to the advertising in Times Square. Maybe Calvin Kleins underwear. No, actually, that was thanks to the packaging. I don't think I formed an opinion about anything thanks to advertising. I like Nike's ads. But I don't often buy their products. I buy what I think looks cool when I'm in a store and it can as well be Rebook or Adidas or something else. There are nothing non-branded available so it may seem as my choice is based on advertising. But no, I have no preference at all other than for what my eyes and feet feel comfortable with. My wife buy clothes of a brand that is not advertised at all. She never goes to their website (if they even have one?). She just walked by this store ones and liked what they had. My kids are perhaps affected by advertising. Although they mock ads mostly. And me for being in advertising. They like fast-food now and then. But not McDonalds, because their ads are so "cheesy". I'm not lovin' it, as they say. They stopped going to Wendy's after the guy appeared with a Wendy wig. Sometimes I wonder if not most advertising do more to piss people off than turn them on. Yes, I know lack of advertising is supposed to lead to shrinking market share. But that might have more to do with the support you get or don't get from the distribution channels when you advertise or not. If Pepsi sell a box for 3 bucks and Coke not I buy that. And vice versa. I wonder if I'm unique. I love movies, magazines, papers, even the internet. For the stories. News or fiction. Advertising needs to be authentic to work. At least on me. A good story wins all the time. Clients however think we get affected just being exposed to. I doubt that. To be on the map, so to speak, is helpful, but it's not very effective. Most advertising is just that, being on the map. Not being on the map may be worse though. I'm looking forward to an ad with a story.

Unknown said...

Here's a dirty little secret. Despite being in advertising I can't recall the last time I actually watched a TV spot or read an ad for any other reason than my professional interest in advertising. They don't make them like VW any longer. The ads that is. There are no stories drawing me in. I might be subliminally affected by outdoor. Due to it's clarity and simplicity perhaps. However, I never bought a car thanks to the advertising in Times Square. Maybe Calvin Kleins underwear. No, actually, that was thanks to the packaging. I don't think I formed an opinion about anything thanks to advertising. I like Nike's ads. But I don't often buy their products. I buy what I think looks cool when I'm in a store and it can as well be Rebook or Adidas or something else. There are nothing non-branded available so it may seem as my choice is based on advertising. But no, I have no preference at all other than for what my eyes and feet feel comfortable with. My wife buy clothes of a brand that is not advertised at all. She never goes to their website (if they even have one?). She just walked by this store ones and liked what they had. My kids are perhaps affected by advertising. Although they mock ads mostly. And me for being in advertising. They like fast-food now and then. But not McDonalds, because their ads are so "cheesy". I'm not lovin' it, as they say. They stopped going to Wendy's after the guy appeared with a Wendy wig. Sometimes I wonder if not most advertising do more to piss people off than turn them on. Yes, I know lack of advertising is supposed to lead to shrinking market share. But that might have more to do with the support you get or don't get from the distribution channels when you advertise or not. If Pepsi sell a box for 3 bucks and Coke not I buy that. And vice versa. I wonder if I'm unique. I love movies, magazines, papers, even the internet. For the stories. News or fiction. Advertising needs to be authentic to work. At least on me. A good story wins all the time. Clients however think we get affected just being exposed to. I doubt that. To be on the map, so to speak, is helpful, but it's not very effective. Most advertising is just that, being on the map. Not being on the map may be worse though. I'm looking forward to an ad with a story.