John Griffiths [johngriffiths7]
What is your specialty: creativity, contact, or research?
creativity - that is what raises what can be accessed just about anywhere to a higher level
Please list some brand names or clients that you have worked for.
Tesco, Diageo, Holiday Inns, Chrysler, London Eye, Microsoft, Visa
Have you got a blog or web page?
The word 'creativity' is much-used in advertising, yet most commercials are annoying, why is that?
one reason is intrusiveness - getting your attention which is easier to do by being irritating. But the main reason is that the agency and client aren't rigorous enough about mapping the category - ads irritate for a variety of reasons but the reason they mostly bore is that we have seen the message and the creative ideas before endlessly.
Can a bad advertising campaign sell well?
alas yes - advertising works at a category level first and foremost - only the best pulls through a brand preference - that's why bad (creative) advertising persists because it still has an effect. There's no penalty for bad creative. Badly targeted advertising will fail though.
How do you respond to the classic quote, "I love the idea, but right now's not the time"?
I don't hear that quote much. If the idea is off brief then we shouldn't present it. If the idea is on brief and will do the job then arguing that its next or last years idea is absurd. I would respond by asking the consequence of pressing on and running the idea anyway. What's the best and the worst that can happen?
Has your experience in qualitative research served in helping you discover new pathways or, more often than not, to kill good ideas?
the value of good qualitative research has been to illuminate how ordinary people who don't work in marketing or advertising process simple communication ideas. That leads to new pathways. Ideas don't have to be killed - they may not be understood (a problem that is fixable) or they may be unfamiliar (usually a good thing) Research doesn't kill good ideas its the meeting which uses the research findings which makes the decision. Respondents shouldn't be allowed to kill anything.
What are the main mistakes clients make in judging creativity?
they think they are the target. Or they think about what the communication says about their company how that makes them perceived as an employee of that company. The worst error is to judge something because you have never seen it before. So the real brief was to make an ad which looked like it came from that category but was different enough to benefit the brand - that is a recipe for dullness.
What advice would give to someone who wants to join the ranks of advertising?
recognise how hard it is to get in so be prepared to be persistent. And to recognise that getting in is not about brilliance but socialisation - being the kind of person that others want to work with.