Don’t be distracted by the shiny toys if they don’t obviously fit with the brand’s strategy, identity and messaging. Consider how they may serve the brand rather than the other way around. Augmented and virtual realities, digital experiences, even the creation of bespoke apps – don’t build all of these and more into advertising campaigns unless they truly add something.
In our dash for new digital developments, we’re sometimes too hasty in discarding practices that made advertising successful in the first place. Just because there are a hundred different ways of reaching people, doesn’t mean anybody’s paying attention.
Equally, targeting because it’s possible may not always build a brand. If you’re in a big market, it pays to advertise to everybody because if you only talk to people using your brand, you’re talking to a declining base. Reach drives growth.
Every generation discards methods the previous lived by. But in our digital age there’s a danger of throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Brands are too easily seduced by chasing, for instance, content virality, that they neglect to build using traditional, emotionally-led, creative channels. The fundamentals of understanding why advertising works and how to apply those factors to the new world are even more vital.
There has always been a laudable desire to stay on trend. It’s the essence of creativity and the key to attracting new audiences. But sometimes these vast new canvases that enable fresh creative expressions distract from the brand’s core task.
Instead of figuring out ‘How do we make our brand come to life in this new thing?’ we ask ‘What do we do with the new thing?’ And therein lies the disconnect.