June 16, 2008

Too Much Information

I had the pleasure of playing golf at Pebble Beach last week. On the first hole (par 4) I hit my second shot to within two feet of the hole. Although a mediocre golfer, I can make 2-footers 9 out of 10 times.

Then the caddie said, "Play it just outside the left edge. Two-thirds of the ball outside the lip and one-third inside." As soon as he said that, I knew I would miss it. And, sure enough, I did.

Sometimes we make simple things way too complicated. We confuse ourselves and make the task much more difficult than it needs to be.

This is especially true in advertising. It's hard to imagine that there's another industry that has taken a simple idea -- it's lucrative to publicize your product -- and complicated it as much as we have.

Brand architecture, positioning documents, strategy statements, copy briefs...two-thirds outside the lip and one-third inside.

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