We take great pride as an industry in our ability to solve problems. It's how we tend to frame our capabilities to clients. It's how we describe what we do to our non-industry friends. It's how we award (and reward) ourselves across strategy and creative awards.
Yet, when you think about it, problem solving is a horrible way to think about what any of us do. It is reactive.
This guest post is written by Maria Vardy, Brand Comms MD at Jaywing
The brand marketing landscape is in a constant state of evolution. It's not easy for the modern marketer to appear swan-like - calm on the surface, legs frantically paddling underneath. Keeping up with the latest technology, trends and audience demands can seem impossible. However, there are brands doing exactly this and they demonstrate true grit and determination, traits that other brands can learn from.
Welsh people don't often get much to cheer about. And yet we do - often. It's a small country, but a noisy one.
After England's early exit from the Euros, patriotic sports fans have turned their attention to Wimbledon. Britain still have strong representation in the form of the Murray brothers. While Andy gets most of the attention, it's actually Jamie who has the higher ranking: currently doubles world number 1. Perhaps part of his strength is due to a natural advantage. He's left-handed.
Across North Asia, the murky, semi-closeted 2D world of ACG (Animation, Comic, Game - and now also 'N' for short novel) is aggressively taking territory from the 3D world of traditional culture by breaking down the walls that have kept them apart. And it is profoundly changing the way that brands are behaving.
Does implicit research predict customer behaviour better than conventional (rational) research? Often it does, but this is probably asking the wrong question. Because brands work at both a System 1 (emotional/implicit) level and a System 2 (rational) level, no brand can be fully explained by emotion alone.
What is it that connects the great brands of the internet age? The brands that are constantly referenced by marketers as benchmarks of performance. The inspirational usual suspects from Red Bull, to Apple, to Google, and beyond. What is the behaviour they all share - no matter their market or position in it - that allows them to capture public imagination and escape cynicism and indifference?
Put simply these great brands don't win fans by creating interesting advertising; they win fans by being interesting companies, full stop.
About a decade ago, Copernicus Consulting did a research study in the US to look at how we saw brands. Its most startling finding to me was the lack of differentiation people saw between brands. Four out of five categories were seen to have increasingly homogeneous brands and only 7% of ads were seen as different. The lack of remarkability was in itself remarkable.
Philosophy defines altruism in different ways, however most definitions will generally revolve around describing altruistic behaviours as those that benefit others rather than oneself.
The term altruism (French, altruisme) was coined by the 19thcentury philosopher - incidentally, also the founder of the discipline we now know as sociology - Auguste Comte.
Warc has again teamed up with the APSOTW – the Advertising Planning School On The Web.
This excellent initiative, run by a team of senior planners from across the world, poses challenges for up-and-coming planners and marketers. It's a chance to show off your ideas in front of a seriously, seriously senior line-up of judges.
We're lending a hand by carrying and promoting their challenges here on the Warc Blog and hopefully highlighting some of the ideas that come out of them.
You can view the previous challenges we helped out with here, and read an introduction to this latest challenge here.
Now, over to Andrew Hovells of PHD Manchester for details of the new assignment…