May 24, 2013

Advice For Students And CEOs

Advice For Ad Students From The Wonderful Dave Trott
Dave's new book is called Predatory Thinking. You can find it here.

Advice For CEOs From The Not-So-Wonderful Me
Yesterday, Bob McDonald, CEO of the world's largest advertiser, P&G, lost his job.

Mr. CEO, before you get snowed by the digital miracle workers, take a deep breath and study the case of Mr. McDonald.

Here's a quote from McDonald from a while back...
"In the digital space, with things like Facebook and Google and others, we find that the return on investment of the advertising, when properly designed, when the big idea is there, can be much more efficient."
Yeah, right.
According to Business Insider, P&G cut their traditional advertising budget and put a lot of effort and energy into Facebook, and... 
"...while P&G cut U.S. spending 5% last year to $2.8 billion, its rivals stepped in to the vacuum."
The results were not pretty. They conclude...
"...McDonald steered P&G in the direction of "free" social and online media, only to haul it back to old-fashioned paid media when he didn't see the results he liked."
The "haul back" came a little too late.

An illustrious 30-year career at P&G ended dramatically and unpleasantly. There were certainly more factors than just advertising in Mr. McDonald's demise, but chasing the elusive digital rainbow sure didn't help.


Sonny said...

Pepsi and P&G - who's next?

Cecil B Demille said...

Emperors and clothes. And never the twain shall meet.

Sean said...

Trott's advice also applies to existing creatives as well. Too many doing mediocre work because of some account man or some planner. Also, please ditch the Disqus request for data. It is too intrusive.

Tim Orr said...

Rats! The Kindle version of Trott's book isn't available to buyers in the USA.

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Mark London said...

Re Trott: hey a##hole, guess who raised those frightened kids?
Your generation.

Guess who created a world where they are terrified of long term middle class unemployment?
Your generation.
Speaking as an older Xer, I can't stand that 'never be afraid to be fired' BS. Yes, SOME people succeeded with that attitide. A lot also played it straight and won too - they just don't get smoke blown up their overrated, self-important asses.
Also, advertising is not a dream job anymore, as this column pointed out only recently.
Guess who created those armies of metric sensitive risk averse brand managers?
Your generation.
So F you, and your 'punk' advice. Whenver I hear that coming out of an old rich Brit I want to punch them hard in the face for their hypocrisy and total lack of self awareness.
Shove your 'D&D Gold' where the sun don't shine, and bugger off to your home in Tuscany where you can share war stories with Kaye and co over your private label wine.
At some point all older ad guys start sounding a lot like WW1 generals. This blog is (mostly) an exception.

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bob hoffman said...

I have removed a comment. You may criticize the host, but not the guests.

dave trott said...


Here you go:

Mark London said...

Are you kidding? Wow. Right, on to more productive areas of discussion.
Sad to see your forlorn hero worship overcome your liking for speaking truth to any kind of power.

And I suppose you are as responsible as this person who shall not be criticized for what this particular post is about.
Did i just get fired from this blog? Success! :-)

bob hoffman said...

My blog, my rules. I do not allow abuse of commenters or guests. It's just good manners. You want to criticize me, that's fine.

By the way, Mark. You sound very angry.

Shanghai61 said...

Youtube also has a trio of videos of Dave addressing an APG London training program. Well worth a watch.

Part One here:

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Mark London said...

Ha! Not al all. I'd call it passionate discourse, and certainly not something the person we're discussing would find new. It is my experience they encourage it.

Just tired (very, very tired) of a certain type of person using poor logic, highly edited metrics and a lot of anecdotal bs to reach very inaccurate conclusions which they now proffer publicly as a form of wisdom.

That's something that annoys you also, no?

I do understand completely where you're coming from. I'm just slightly sad to find out where that place is.

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