Advertising Sucks.


Let’s start with two simple questions:

  1. Do you like advertising?

  2. What is your favorite ad?

Now unless you work in the business, you likely answered the first question with “no.” Hell, even most advertising people can’t stand when their YouTube video is interrupted with a lame commercial. For the second question, you likely answered that pretty quickly with something you recently saw or an ad from the past you’ve always loved. Now, why is that?

It’s because some ads cut through the clutter and sear themselves into our brains, they wrap their little creative arms around our heart and give a little squeeze. And those devious little ads have three shared characteristics. They are relevant, they are stirring, and they are brave.

The average human will see thousands of ads a day…everyday. And those ads not only compete with the ads they run in context with but every other great ad that has earned a placed in someone’s memory. So, creating an ad on any channel that gets noticed is increasingly challenging. But here’s a dirty little advertising secret…it’s easy to make an ad that delivers on the brief and makes the client happy — it’s way harder to create an ad that your customers will give a damn about.

We humans have learned to ignore, tune out, skip and block ads. So what is a business to do? Well, start by not doing what everyone else in the industry is doing. Go against the grain, deviate from the playbook, create something stirring, something that moves people, something that makes someone pause, cry, laugh or flip you off. Make something that matters. The world has enough lame, beige advertising. Go against it.