In Mike’s original Shared Beliefs he was clear about the importance of advertising as an investment. That’s how brands ‘reach a threshold of impact’, he wrote. In the fail-fast digital age, that philosophy needs adapting – the more disruption there is, the more brands have to take risks and provoke.
Since one size does not fit all, experimentation that defies expectations becomes essential. Such has been the proliferation of channels as we scramble for a microsecond of people’s attention, that advertising today needs to be unpredictable, incongruous even, to help people step away from the familiar and see things with fresh eyes.
Everyone needs to behave like a disruptor, even if they’re a legacy brand. After all, the best advertising has always been interruptive of people’s lives, stopped them from doing what they were doing in the first place – watching TV or reading a newspaper. The concept hasn’t changed, only the ability to do so.
Economic pressures make clients nervous but risk can be minimised with data-enriched homework. Accurate real-time measurements mean we know customers better than ever. And technology enables us to test and learn with remarkable speed and accuracy, developing those learnings at scale.
The best advertising is often the result of being at our boldest, a trait all the more valuable in an age when people have less time to give to advertising content. Pack up the safety net, avoid the comfort zone, arm yourselves with insightful data and take a mischievous leap of faith.
Creativity needs investment – an investment in risk.