Who can tell me what my mother looks like?

As I sat down in front of the computer this morning I was reminded about a story I heard about a pastor who asked his audience this question; “Who can tell me what my mother looks like?”

Several people shouted their answers back at him. Some said she was 5′ 10″ with long dark hair, weighing in at 154 pounds, others that she was a blond bombshell at 5′ 3 and 125 ponds. There were more opinions about what she looked like than the healthcare bill. Finally, the pastor brought her on stage. She was a beautiful woman in her late fifties with red short hair at 5′ 11″ and 157 pounds. “There is only one mom, and this is what she looks like.” His point was that that everyone’s opinion about God cannot be correct or true. No matter what your perceptions and opinions are, there is truth out there. Only one can be right.

So what does this have to do with marketing? Well if the ‘mother’ is advertising, then we are in business.

Welcome to world of “I know best” and subjective comments on advertising. It is funny to see how a professional industry contains such a wide variety of professionals who ‘knows’ what’s good and what’s not. No wonder clients sometimes lift their eyebrows and are somewhat skeptical. “Am I feeding your ego or my own business by hiring you?”

Don’t misunderstand, I love that people have their own opinion about marketing. I definitively do. But let us at least keep it on a professional level when it comes to work produced by other agencies. When one professional loves a creative solution, and another one hates it, who do you trust and why? Everyone can’t be right? Or was the pastor wrong? Is is good and bad at the same time?

Go to 10 different agencies and get 10 different solutions for your project. Thats just how it is. There is no “one way” to resolve a marketing problem, but there are more and less effective ways. And there is only ONE answer to the question: “DId it work?”

I browsed over to http://www.adweek.com this weekend and checked out some of the “Ad of the Day” commercials and of course “the comments”. So this is where the fun begins.

Brand: Samsung Wireless Telephones. Agency: Leo Burnett USA, Inc. Ad: Samsung “R&D”. 20 comments today from 1 star and “I hate this spot” and “garbaaaage.” to 5 stars and “hilarious. love it” and “Kudos to the team.” So, it got me thinking. Do people just make comments from their own feeling or are they really objective and really know what they are talking about? (I guess I already know that one, but still.) Or maybe some of the people who are commenting are not even working in the field of advertising? Now that’s an idea…

So, do they really know if the commercial worked or not? Isn’t it why we are in this business, to make it work for our clients? So here is the million dollar question; “Did it do the job it was intended to do?” If it did, isn’t it then a “love it” ad? Or is is “bad” just because you think it is? How can we be sure?

I ‘grew up’ with David Ogilvy, so I might be partially bias to some of his teachings, but he made sense. He definitively knew what he was talking about. Does it still hold water? Check out http://vodpod.com/watch/413344-david-ogilvy-we-sell-or-else and let me know.

The next time you ‘love it’ or ‘hate it’, or have an opinion about my mother, think again. It may be that the truth is different than what you think.

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One Response to “Who can tell me what my mother looks like?”

  1. Tweets that mention Love it! Hate it! But does it work? « OCdesigner’s Blog -- Topsy.com Says:

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Mona Lisa, Michael W. Michael W said: Love it! Hate it! But does it work?: http://wp.me/psaNb-1G […]

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