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Faris Yakob

The heretical Faris Yakob revisits the perennial argument about the nature of advertising.
Waste is something to be avoided, according to many marketers and their favoured digital targeting platforms, while others understand its subtle power.
As media has fragmented so has the practice of overall communications planning, says Faris Yakob. With a whole landscape of specialist agencies and tools vying for attention and dollars, comms planning is due a rebirth.
According to some research, the average human attention span is now eight seconds, less than that of the goldfish with nine.
If the future of advertising lies in direct marketing, then that marketing must return to delivering content worth consuming, instead of an endless stream of sales messages based on previous purchases, Faris Yakob believes.
Ideal ideas are not original but variations of a form, marrying innovation and immediacy to different frameworks.
There is now an abundance of media available, with people spending an average of 12 hours a day consuming it.
Decision science shows that human decision-making is fraught with systematic biases that lead to suboptimal decisions in all contexts.
Despite increased awareness of behavioural economics in the industry, little advertising is shaped by using it.
Customer experience and/or experience design have emerged as a discipline that many agencies, especially digital ones, are moving to offer but, Faris Yakob warns, experience cannot entirely replace brand communications.
The problem with endless over-optimisation is that practitioners look at advertising through the lens of a spreadsheet which, argues Faris Yakob, loses the humanity in the craft.
Faris Yakob wonders whether the explosion of the craft beer industry and resulting decline in the fortunes of the brewing behemoths carries any lessons for advertising? I'm in London this week and, having not been back for a while, I was struck by the visibility of craft beers, which I hadn't noticed to the same degree before.
Studies suggest that likability is the key driver of advertising efficacy, outperforming all other measures as a predictive metric, so, argues Faris Yakob, why don’t more brands aim for being liked – a much more realistic goal than being loved.
Faris Yakob agrees with Google that a world of instant gratification powered by always-on mobility has changed consumer behaviour, but warns not to confuse the value of ‘decisive moments’ with that of long-term brand activity that impacts purchase decisions down the line.
BEST OF 2017 OPINION: Subscribing to the notion that a change in belief will lead to a corresponding change in behaviour may seem like common sense, but Faris Yakob argues that marketers who want to do their job should look into how behaviour is actually shaped and changed.
It’s a well-known cognitive hack that the more you are exposed to something, the more likely you are to like it, but Faris Yakob thinks that brands need to get smarter about taking advantage of this.
Faris Yakob addresses the tensions between short-term sales effects and longer-term brand building - and concludes that measurement holds the key to untangling this paradoxical relationship.
When Alex Bogusky was creative director of the agency that bears his name, he insisted on being read the press release before seeing the creative work.
"I wish I could be with you today, in the flesh as they say, but I'm in India. Ever been in India? Very hot.
Ev Williams is in large part responsible for the social web. He co-founded Blogger and helped popularise the idea before selling it to Google.
"You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."    - Inigo Montoya,  The Princess Bride .
In the October issue of  Admap, we considered how the homogeneity of agency briefs, across disciplines and geographies, is antithetical to the goal of differentiation.
In August I delivered a Warc webinar entitled 'Beyond boring briefs: How to inspire great work' and it garnered the most attention and follow-up requests of any that we've done together.
Recently, we undertook a project with a lovely market research agency to understand the evolving aspects of the industry and the agency's place in it.
When someone says that, what are they asking? They're asking for permission to enquire about something you may not be comfortable talking about because it's private.