The simple joy of advertising…

In the last few weeks I feel like I have been inundated with the same repetitive message, it’s followed me when I check email, it’s followed me when I’m reading the trade press online, it’s even followed me when I’m reading my social media updates in trap one (c’mon on…we all do it – don’t we?)

Thankfully it isn’t re-targeting, cookie harvesting, trading desks versus networks, attribution models, VPAID definitions, or any of the above, it is simply – people debating the merits of good and bad advertising, and it’s great to see. It has to be a good thing to take the odd five minutes here and there to remind yourself of some of the great creativity our industry delivers, either via intelligent placement or simple, great messaging.

My renewed vigour with the joy of advertising started as it should, with great copy; the Guardian’s ‘Three Little Pigs’ ad by BBH. Brilliant, and still, weeks later, being debated across the mainstream press and our own industry.

Next up, NABS, (another fantastic industry initiative) put on a talk with Ray Snoddy and Lord Tim Bell. Now love him or loathe him, Lord Bell can never be accused of lacking opinion and he took great pains to encourage everybody there to be proud of our work and our output, with some great stories about political advertising (both sides of the spectrum!).

We had the return of the Advertising Association with their LEAD event where we heard an industry call to arms from Cilla Snowball and a great presentation from Keith Weed who spoke of the industry’s opportunity to work alongside consumers and ‘positively shape the lives of future generations’. Finally I really enjoyed an article by Greg Grimmer in a rival publication to this one. It was great because whilst we can all wax lyrical about creative, there is always one person at a party who bemoans our industry for driving materialism – and as he pointed out, remind them that three of the biggest global brands are all free to consumers specifically because of advertising – Google, Facebook and Twitter.

Screw the so-called golden age of advertising – it’s the advertising that’s golden, and it always will be. The distribution methods have changed, the copy is always changing and now ads follow me around the web, but this is a great industry and I will be making a concerted effort to make sure everybody around me knows it.

  • Gary Bembridge

    Thanks for the thought provoking post!

    One of the biggest challenges any advertising faces is simply “being noticed”. As someone once said: “it is better to be noticed once than ignored 1000 times”! So much of the ad messages we are bombarded with literally fall off our backs like water off a duck’s back.

    There are a few gems that we notice, and then as they intrigue and interest us we then remember them, digest the messages and talk about them. The recent Guardian ad you refer to is one such ad. It stopped us and made us all think – and we found others around us were doing the same. The discussion and debate starts and the ad (despite being shown not that much) becomes important and remembered!

    Unfortunately, testing and the pressures in large organisations and the long and committee like approach to advertising development kills off so many good ideas. We end up seeing the same old thing over and over!