Creative cut through

By June 29, 2017Creative

Working in the advertising industry for over 13 years has taught me many things. It’s a vocation that I’m passionate about and I really do believe passion is the key to any kind of sustained success.

If you don’t love it, don’t do it – that’s what I say.

So, what do I have to add to the plethora of advertising blogs that are clogging up the www? Well, hopefully I will give some entertaining and occasionally inspirational insights that are real and relevant, down to earth and engaging, educational and informative… and that sentence right there is about as fluffy as I will get!

This is a warts ‘n’ all look at what’s right, what’s wrong, what works, what doesn’t and how to navigate the ever evolving madness that is retail marketing.

If you’re a marketeer, business owner or simply interested in the day to day happenings of the advertising industry at grass roots level, this blog could be for you.

So here goes, lesson #1 – Achieving cut through.

Many of my clients ask the age-old question; what do I need to change in my marketing to get in front of my competitors? How do I stand out? Then most of them go on to tell me that they haven’t changed what they do for years and what they have always done has always worked so can’t understand why isn’t it working now?

Well, the reason is simple and it’s the same reason we don’t wear bell-bottom jeans, smoke on planes or don mullets anymore – times change and so do our habits.

Remember these ads…?

No, me either… but they existed and people believed them!

Consumers are so much savvier and better educated now. There is a myriad of media to consume, messages coming at us every minute of the day via Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Twotter and every other social media source (or anti-social media as I like to call it). There is information everywhere we turn and consumers love to do their research. Modern day purchase makers don’t want to be ‘sold to’, they want to be informed and made an offer they can then go away and find out more about.

Yet, when we start to talk about pulling together a cut through ad campaign, the first question is usually about media and rates… what the? Why does it matter?

Everyone thinks they can negotiate great rates with the media; just ask them… but what about the message? You know… the part of the campaign that will actually sell your product or service; or not.

We put so much emphasis and money in to the method of delivery that we forget to make sure the package is right. Now, don’t get me wrong, I have a healthy respect for the power of the media, in fact I began my career selling free to air television ad space (maybe we will talk about that circus another time).

At the agency we plan, negotiate and buy media for our clients and we do it well. There is an art to it and it will always be the biggest investment in any marketing campaign.

BUT… come on, it’s the message not the vehicle that’s the answer. There are lots of ways to transport a box from Adelaide to Melbourne… road, rail, air and sea. But what if once the box arrives it’s full of useless crap? Who is going to buy that? No one!

Creative in the message and strategy behind the offer is key.

As Jef I. Richards once said “Creative without strategy is called art, creative with strategy is called advertising”.

So let’s spend a little more time, effort and money on developing the creative message as well as the strategy behind it because delivering the message to your audience is the easy part.

Richard Miller – Director & Creative Strategist, Crisp Advertising

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