Sunday, February 22, 2009

Staying abreast of advertising trends

I advocate interestingness in advertising - that people don't want advertising, they want things that are interesting and, sometimes, that is an ad.

The commercial about tests the theory to breaking point. In it hundreds of topless Aryan women take to the Air - to the sounds of The Ride of the Valkyrie. While it is not the first commercial ever to use the idea of formation sky-diving or the Wagnerian sound track, or female nudity - I will wager it is the first to combine all of the above.

The result is comically bad. Admittedly I am not familiar with the product being promoted - and I don't speak Danish but I wonder is their is a sly insider joke that I am not privy to. So, is it interesting? I am inclined to say it is more curious than interesting. But it serves to underscore the point that advertising can be as interesting as all get out, but if it is irrelevant then it will likely enough pass unnoticed and change no behaviour.

Likewise I am baffled by this commercial by BBH London for Johnny Walker, part of the Keep Walking campaign that has been running for several years. I think I 'get' it. But I am left with the uncomfortable feeling that it is something of a 'wank'. Some commentators have said it is a triumph because of the 'film-making'. I'm not convinced that the purpose of advertising is to advance the moviemaker's craft, though a well crafted ad well thought out, arresting and relevant will have a far greater effect. This one falls far short of that. An insider insight, a planners delight but would I buy whisky, let alone the JB brand as result. Probably not. Interestingly I am far more likely to be influenced by a revue or product recommendation in a men's magazine than a self indulgent message like this. Will the barman snigger if I order JW?

I'll have a Bookers thanks, and if you don't have that a Maker's Mark - over ice, hold the water.

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