Cutting through the haze

Are 'creative' campaigns more effective, less effective or about as effective as 'uncreative' campaigns? Winston Fletcher of Delaney Fletcher Bozell attempts to untangle the relationship between creativity and effectiveness

Winston Fletcher

There are numerous impenetrable questions about advertising. How does advertising work? Are burst campaigns more, or less, effective than drip campaigns? How do you compare the cost of a page in colour with that of a 30-second commercial?

One crucial question seems destined never to be answered. It was being discussed half a century ago, and people are still debating it. It is that tiresome chestnut: are ‘creative’ campaigns more effective, less effective, or about as effective as ‘uncreative’ campaigns?

We have all heard the debate a hundred times. Is it a question to which there never can be a final answer? I hope not, for it is the question which I aim to untangle.