Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Creativity @ it's best - A world of ADs

Creatvity inundates you with the aah's and aahaa's, wow's and wooow's...

Let's see a detailed view of one of the most creative jobs on the planet.
It is about ad/commercial (making of the advertisement) making.

Here is my classification for ads:
1. Ads that speakup directly on the product, simple straight ads.
2. Ads that does the job of mimicing other ads or the purpose of the ad is to target other competitor.
3. Ads that are made horribly worse, that they miss the whole point on what the product is or what is the ad all about.
4. This category of ads are stunning and make people to think, laugh and embrace. They serve the purpose of capturing people's mind.

Ads are made for different reasons, the primary motivations are
1. Increase the market for the product
2. Launch of a new product.
3. Spending on ads, gives a % of exemption in tax. (This one is slightly different but interesting -> pumpkin @ Halloween)
4. Brand making
5. Ads on news/events/message/non-profit/social/special interest ads - the other kind

Let me scroll back to the ad categories and peek through them in brief detail:
The first category - straight 1's. I would classify most of the American ads here, example: Look at the pharma/food ads there will be couple of people coming and talking on the benefits of using the product and what it is. Also to capture more user base, the ad makers often use different sections of people based on their ages/sex/color.

The second category is targeted to prey on the competitor(s) products/ads. If one does an ad, the other does a different one to disprove or show things better than their competitor. Classic example is Coke vs Pepsi. And the tit for tat continues on and on, until companies can afford to shell out money.

The third category, huh do i have to talk about them? oh ok, may be not...
No one may necessarily take an ad to be a loser, but since the ad has a mass impact, if things are potrayed wrong it can inverse the impact to become negative. Ads that highlight the negative aspects of the product, ads that does not contain good quality audio/video, ad that was shot in one language and translated wrongly in to another, and there could be n^n reasons why wouldn't they click. Google for worst ads made, you get tons of them...

Now the fourth category, funny/stunning/awesome ads. It makes you think and gives a place for the commercial/product a place in your heart. The way an ad is showcased can take the product to greater heights. Generally ads that can relate to most or certain set of people, ads that are completely new from others, ads that abstracts certain aspects of the product (so that people tend to thin, oh there is lot more left in it...), this is the most important reason I would say - Ads that make the people to derive things/infer, they often always click. But if the ad is too creative and is like a puzzle; that misses a whole lot.

So a perfect ad should be a combination of things in the right proportion.
Use of the right words, music, pictures, characters, picturization, caption etc.
To draw up the lines, to give an analogy - it should be like the perfect food which is made with perfect ingredients, served at the right time. Serving at the right time is very important, an ad being good could be eaten by other competitor ads or more stupidly by their own ads. It is like a self destructor or suicide.
I was thinking for a good example for this, could vaguely remember a Pepsi ad. Sprite that is part of the pepsi group, made an ad claiming all other drinks or non-sense. I remember seeing other Pepsi ads (not Sprite) was also air'd in the same time frame of the Sprite ad, this is a perfect contradiction.
So not only making of the ads that matters, the time of releasing it and see on how each ad fits in to the total ad campaign is important.

Ooops I always often do that, drag in to other areas and miss my point. Anyways to fall back on track, ads that impress me are the ads that make me to draw inferences in a positive way. When you infer what happens you relate and start analyzing which means you spent time on that ad not just when it was shown, but even otherwise. If you have spent a shot span of time as little as 30sec(half a min), other than the air time of the ad; then i would say the ad has done its purpose. By making you act on the ad, it creates a place in your mind. In this regard, I appreciate the Indian ads, without doubt I would say Indian ads are far superior and they are highly creative.

Especially this last category of ads what makes new product to realize it's full potential in the market and if the company/brand that makes this new product is new as well, then it makes it even more critical to make the best ad.

Having said all that, what makes it more difficult is that the air time/volume that your ad can occupy is limited. So to pack everything in to one demands high creativity.

Ads vary based on the target segment, the media varies and the cost varies appropriately. TV ads are costlier compared to radio, with in the same TV different channels charge different range based on the shows and the duration of the ads.
Ad spending can grow to billions and billions of dollars, - Shell rocks for Ferrarisee this one an ad made after 606 takes, amazing - Honda accord. Not just TV/radio popular medias, but in public places, retail shops etc.
Usually company's evaluate the outcome of the ad, they analyze the market trend before and after, see how much there is a boost for the product in the market, trend graphs etc etc. By this they would know on if the money spent on ads is worth or not and would also gauge the ad's quality and when or when not to make ads.

Ads in new ways:
Microsoft is taking the ad even to the shopping carts - read more...

This could be an interesting question, What could be the average time allocated for commercials in TV/Radio's? - A 24 hour channel, my guess is 1.597 hours of time, that is close to 2 hours, approx 23%.

I can keep writing on ads, forcing myself to stop here.

some links to visit/pass time on:
2. some of my favorite ads - Amul, Britania, Apple, Hutch
3. Totyota's human touch
4. wood
Click on the ads that you see from link 4, there is a huge list...

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