I just read a great article by Jean Pascal Mathieu in this month’s OMMA magazine. Titled, “Ads Are on the Run,” it discusses how consumers deal with advertising.
Mathieu asserts, “Here’s the new reality: Consumers deal with the media onslaught in one of two ways. One, they’re simply tuning out the message–because it’s not the right message, sent at the right time, in the right way. Or two, they’re taking the message and posting it to the social network du jour because it was sent at the right time, in the right way and in a manner that was appropriate to them.”
Translation: Consumers are bombarded with all forms of advertising so they’ve stopped paying attention any time we bombard them with material that is not useful. So rather than trying to dazzle consumers with the next flashy thing, we should be focusing on sending them a useful message that hits them at the right place and time.
What’s Mathieu telling us? We need strategy. Great creative can’t get the job done on it’s own; it needs the guiding hand of strategy to dictate audience, key message, and medium.
In the world of advertising agencies, this is what separates the men from the boys, so to speak. A lot of people can create work that looks good, smells great, and feels wonderful–but doesn’t increase your revenue. Only the best create work that speaks to your audience in a meaningful way–and accomplishes goals.
The next time you’re looking for an agency, don’t just glance at the pretty pictures in the portfolio. Ask for the success stories. Demand to see results from clients who have trusted the agency to combine great creative with well-rounded strategy. Only then can you be sure you’re getting a partner that knows how to communicate with the right people at the right time and place.