Wednesday, March 3, 2010

But it worked in our conference room...

The biggest difference between traditional advertising and online advertising is their relationship to others. Traditional advertising has always recognized and understood that we advertise amid a crowded and noisy competitive set. Your ad must do or say something different in order to get noticed. Think small. Think different.

Online advertising has grown out of the direct industry, where the mailing list was perhaps the most important aspect in reaching customers. You knew exactly whom you were speaking to and what their interests were. So the need for intrusion was lesser than that demanded by traditional efforts.

Now, of course the above are generalities and over time, the rules have changed somewhat. Online media is often as cluttered as off.

However, perhaps all this is an aside. What I'm thinking about is showing work to clients. You know the drill. Wood panelled conference room. Rapt attention. You press a button and your ad or commercial appears on a wide screen. Eyes are focused. Attention is held. A controlled and artificial environment.

Here's my proposal.

Next time I show a spot to a client I am bringing two screaming children, a pizza delivery man and a telemarketer with me. Then I will sit with the client until they need to grab a beer or take a whiz. Then I will show my rough cut as the fourth in a pod of seven commercials.

That's real life.

And probably the only way to really judge work.


Anonymous said...

That already exists, George. Every fucking client in the conference room is staring intently at their Blackberry while you're trying to show your spots. And their assistants are walking in and whispering in their ears and they suddenly have to leave the room. And someone else knocks on the door and say 'excuse me, we booked this conference room', so you have to leave and show the work on a fucking laptop at someone's cubicle. Then some asswipe says 'I don't know, it doesn't seem big to me', excuse me I have a budget meeting, can you send it to me as a file so I can review it later?

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Sell! Sell! said...

Very true George. That technique would probably reveal most commercials to be the unremarkable visual wallpaper that they are.

"Where was my ad in there, I don't remember seeing it?"