Marketing Upheaval

Stop Boring Creative and Over-Reaching With Brands

January 08, 2020 Creative Outhouse Season 2 Episode 26
Marketing Upheaval
Stop Boring Creative and Over-Reaching With Brands
Show Notes

Thanks for joining us for Season 2 of Marketing Upheaval. In this episode our founder and host, Rudy Fernandez shares his point of view on the marketing landscape from the abundance of invisible creative to the over-thinking a brand. If you like what he has to say, drop us a line or contact us on our website -

Hey everyone, it's 2020. That's fun to say. Anyway, I hope you had a chance to listen to our guests from 2019. I can tell you I learned a lot from them. In fact, I can point to at least one piece of business we won. By using the knowledge we gained from our guests. I can also tell you that I steal some of their lines in meetings, and it makes me sound very smart. So let's get going with what we hope to see change in 2020.

Well, we're calling this episode "what to look out for in 2020". 

Yeah, it's not terribly original is it? Which brings me to the first thing to look out for. And this is something that I hope will change. Let me tell you story. I went to a conference last year, and I saw something that exemplified what I don't like about where marketing is going. You know, like you I'm equally fascinated and confused by our changing world. 

A lot of changes a great. Some, not so much. Anyway, I was at this conference, and one presenter showed to digital ads for a nursing degree. One had a photo with a blue filter and a smiling hospital worker with the headline, "Advance your nursing career.” The other had a different hospital worker with a blue tinted photo, and a headline that said, “Online MSN in nursing.”

And he grinned and he asked the audience, “Which of these ads do you think performed better?” People shouted their theories for one or the other. “The one on the right, it's more targeted!” “The one on the left shows more diversity!” 

Meanwhile, all I could think was, “They're both equally boring.” I just see it too often: invisible, creative. It's not horrible. It's just nothing. It has no point of view, no human connection. It's just a data point of stock shot and an hour of someone who has Adobe suites time. What causes it? I think fear, fear and the wrong idea of how to use data. 

The fear? That's obvious, it comes from the fact that marketing jobs from the CMO down aren't always the most secure jobs in the world. A lot of times people operate in this state of fear. And when you're in a state of fear, all your decisions are going to be risk averse. If you work for an agency, you know what I'm talking about, how many times have you been trying to get work approved, and your client is making decisions exclusively based on what she thinks her boss might like? And she's scared of her boss. Has that situation ever brought about a groundbreaking piece of communication? 

Rather than make a judgment call, we try to justify decisions by throwing out numbers. That's in case someone asks why they made a certain decision. They can say it wasn't me it was the numbers. Of course you need data to make a smart decision. I'm not saying that. These days, we don't just use data we hide behind it. Like that guy who thought that because one boring ad did 10% better than the other boring ad that it was a great ad. It wasn't, it was crap. 

The truth is will never have the actual data you need. What's it going to take for everyone that I want to buy this thing that I'm selling? We're never going to know exactly.

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