December 03, 2008

Ad Agencies Still Don't Get It

The Ad Contrarian mantra goes like this:
"We don't get them to try our product by convincing them to love our brand. We get them to love our brand by convincing them to try our product."
However, most agencies and most marketing mavens still believe that "branding" is something separate from selling.

A perfect example of the tortured logic of branding can be found in this video of a big agency genius explaining why agencies should stop branding and start selling.

George Parker of AdScam hits it right on head:
"...His main point is that as the economy tightens, agencies should throw "branding" out the window and concentrate on producing work that is "hard sell" as this will produce more sales for clients. .. if this approach will sell more ...goods and services...Why the fuck don't these douchenozzles recommend doing it all the time? I'll tell you why... Because you can't quantify what all those millions spent on branding actually do for you. That way you can't be held accountable...."
Why have clients lost confidence in the ad industry? Because we've re-defined the purpose of advertising from "selling" to "branding" -- and no one knows what the hell "branding" means, other than it's expensive and requires lots of trips to LA.

Worst of all, the bullshit has gotten so pervasive that when we try to talk sense to clients they start throwing our own brand babble back at us.

A Blog You Should Read:
George Tannenbaum writes one of my favorite blogs -- it's called Ad Aged. Check it out.

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