Effectiveness and two-thirds of the human race

Tim Broadbent

WHY ASIA TODAY IS LIKE BRITAIN IN THE 1970S

British advertising had a problem. It was too creative. British agencies won more awards at Cannes than any other country for five straight years in a row in the 1970s. Why was that a problem? Because, to quote Jeremy Bullmore, they were 'doing work designed just to win awards', not to sell products.1 They had lost their compass bearings. If the work was less effective, clients would turn to other ways of stimulating sales. Agencies were committing hara-kiri. The IPA Effectiveness Awards were launched in 1979, in response to this problem. They introduced a new competitive arena. Agencies could be compared not only on their creativity but also on their effectiveness.