Making ineffective ads
The four-minute behind-the-scenes Bud Light video below is a recent example. What fun these crazy-smart ad-agency folks have! But as you watch it, run these questions through your head:
- Will anything done in the making of this commercial prompt someone to want to order and drink a Bud Light?
- Do many of the costly details in the ad--the eyes on the "ghosts" for example--make the ad more effective?
- Do clients really think ad-agency people are oh-so-intelligent when they utter some of the nonsense spoken in the interviews?
- (Feel free to add questions of your own.)
See, while advertising can be entertaining, entertainment is not advertising. Effective advertising means the distinctiveness of the brand must be the key focus. Yet here, not a single aspect of Bud Light's distinctiveness is part of the ad, let alone its dominant feature.
But just try offering that critique to the ad agency folks. They'll no doubt whine that you "just don't get it." (Believe me, I've heard that many, many times.) They'll claim their "wildest 'whatever moments' ever" make Bud Light special and distinctive. "Nobody else can match our portrayal of these crazy good times!" they'll tell you.
No other beer? No other beverage?
Here are two more short entertaining films masquerading as advertising, both offering nothing distinctive about the respective brands. And both probably sold with that same "nobody can match it" promise when, in fact, pretty much anybody can match it.
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But getting the clients to buy advertising that actually sells their brand?
That would probably take real ad-agency intelligence.