3 Thoughts On Advertising

3, OK, 4 Thoughts On Advertising

Here are some thoughts on advertising driven by three recent reads.

What If There Was No Advertising?

Imagine a world where all advertising was erased from the environment. That means no more urinal or bathroom stall ads; no more behavioral retargeting; movies and tv shows without commercials (oh, that’s Netflix); no outdoor boards on Montana highways, and on. Hard to visualize? Maybe, but here is a series of “ads” that have been erased. Jorge Pérez Higuera can help with his photo series Public Spaces. As he says…

We live in a world surrounded by advertising. Every day, we are presented with thousands of advertisements—but do we pay attention to them?

We have become accustomed to advertisements, and so we ignore them. This is part of the reason why companies are constantly seeking new places to advertise in, often at the expense of our public spaces.

Paradoxically, we barely resist the privatization of these spaces, while on the internet we use plug-ins like AdBlock (an application with a line of code that suppresses advertisements on our browser) because we consider the continual assault of banners an invasion of our privacy.

Advertising Is Back! Y’all.

From a Business Insider article.

2017 was a trying time for ad agencies, with issues ranging from transparency and brand safety concerns to the looming threat of consulting firms coming to a head last year.

But the prospects for the advertising industry look a lot brighter in 2018, according to new research issued by UBS.

The investment bank surveyed 350 global marketing executives and 500 US CFOs and has predicted that ad agencies will bounce back in 2018, buoyed by a growth of 4-5% in global advertising spend.

The recovery in 2018 will be driven by a number of factors, UBS analysts said, including large advertisers increasing the scope of work with creative agencies and big sporting and political events driving increasing spend on brand media.

This is particularly interesting, as it runs counter to the trend of advertisers doubling down on direct advertising in recent years, where they have prioritized marketing strategies that drive measurable results.

So, I’ll believe this when I see it. That said, the ad industry has gotten way too into tech and has forgotten that ideas, big ideas, drive the business. Data geeks beware. By the way, if you are a data geek, shouldn’t you be working at a hedge fund?

TV Is Dead.

Bob Hoffman rails against the over-hyped world of digital media. In fact, he has built a mighty fine post ad agency ownership biz on his thinking and talking. He is right and usually finds some “facts” that support his views. Last week he railed, with supporting numbers, that TV still rules the Super Bowl. Surprised that the big box wins? I’m not.

Digital Hype Machine Never Sleeps

Speaking of the trade press, a story in MediaWeek just before the Super Bowl was headlined, “Super Bowl Viewers Embrace Multiple Screens.” The story had some amazing “statistics”:

  – “Nearly half (47%) of respondents will use secondary (digital) media to consume Super Bowl-related content”

– “Viewership via streaming services is expected to be up 45% from last year”

The exec VP of a digital media company had this to say, “There is no doubt about it—streaming is on the rise, and advertisers must either adapt to keep up…or face falling behind.” Ohmygod, the heartbreak of falling behind!

We return you now to Planet Earth where 98% of people watched the Super Bowl on TV and 2% streamed it online.

So, is TV dead? No, but to think that we’d rather sit through endless commercials when we can launch one of the many commercial-free options (Netflix, HBO, Amazon, soon Disney and Apple…) is, um, dopey.

Smart Ad Agencies That Get Off Their Asses – Win.

If you run an advertising agency. Or, just work for one that should be growing, take a look at my article How A Boise Advertising Agency Went Global. There is a lot of learning here – especially about having a specialty. And, the article itself is proof that a very narrowly focussed blog like mine can garner shares (like over 100 in a couple of weeks) and lots of views (like over 300.)

Free: 26 Ways To Grow Ad Agency Profits
Business-building tips from over 30 years running ad agencies.

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