Tuesday, March 24, 2009

In which Hatchet gets new duties, prepares for a pitch and neglects the blog.

Well, things have gotten busy, and I haven't blogged. I'm a bad person, I know.

Firstly, the economy, and why it sucks: People lose their jobs. Even WG is not immune, and almost 3 weeks ago, two people were let go. Not fair.

I picked up some duties one of them was performing. I regret the way I came to have these duties, but I'm happy to be doing them. They involve being the tip of the spear for WG's social media presence. To see the fruits of my efforts, check out https://twitter.com/jacquesmunkey, and feel free to follow the little guy, look at his Facebook, YouTube, etc.

Also, we're preparing for a big pitch. Pitching new business is an interesting project. You're working for two bosses: your own agency and the potential client. On one hand, you have tons of freedom, since there are no budgets. On the other, you have to be even more on-strategy than you ever do with a client, because it's a competition. It's fun and stressful at the same time. Great stuff comes out of it, but it can also make for a lot of tension between coworkers.

Here's hoping we do well on this one. I really have a lot of heart for what we're presenting, and not because it's all or even mostly mine. It's brilliant, and win or lose we have a lot to be proud of.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Daylight Savings Time=False Advertising

Daylight savings time began this weekend, and as I woke up this morning at 6:00, and everything told me it was 7:00, I thought about how DST is really a great metaphor for the old model of advertising.

Personally, if the powers that be, that is, whoever it is that decides we continue the DST charade, came to me and said, "B, we need you to wake up an hour earlier. It'll suck for you, but it will help somebody. Could you swing it?" I would be on board.

They don't do that though. Instead, they sneak in in the dead of night and change the time. When I realize, say around noon on Sunday, that it's really 1:00, I feel like I just lost an hour, and the day is that much closer to being over. They even get my computer in on the action, and my cell, making my trusted devices lie to me.

The old model of advertising talks down to people, and lies to them, and tries to make them feel bad for not participating.

The new model talks to people. It engages them, informs them and asks them to give it a chance. It empowers them, and encourages them to tell a friend if they like what they experience.

So as you look at sunrises again as you drive into work, think about how bad it feels to be lied to, and try not to get in on that action.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Getting Noticed

In advertising, we talk a lot about cutting through the clutter. That is, consumers today are the more advertised-to than ever before. Many of our advances in how we enjoy entertainment involve removing the ads. Think TiVo. As advertisers, we try to make our messaging get noticed, so someone can hear the message.

This make getting noticed when you're trying to get a job in advertising a big issue. If you cannot cut through the clutter to get your message across, how will you be able to do it for clients?

There are a few stories of people doing this really well. One that flies around WG is that of a gentleman sending a cell phone to the CCO, with a note saying, "I'm going to call this number at X:00pm tomorrow." Good approach. Got him noticed and talked about.

Another, and my personal "wish I would have thought of it" is from "Hey Whipple, Squeeze This" by Luke Sullivan (buy it!) An applicant got a picture of one of the Creative Directors at a firm, and used it to make a fake ID. He loaded it into a wallet and loaded the rest of the wallet with business card-sized versions of his work. He then left the wallet in the bathroom at the firm. Someone finds it and returns it to the CD, who knows it's not his, and checks out all the work inside. I believe that guy got a job. He should have gotten a prize.

Then there's this guy:

I wish this guy luck, but this clip brings up and excellent point. With any creative endeavor, there's a pint where your creativity overwhelms or simply does away with the message. The point of cutting through the clutter is to make people hear what you really have to say.

Another creepy story comes from my partner, who say at an award show, an award winner wrote "I need a job" on the back of her check, and stood silently for the whole party holding her makeshift sign. It's no good to get noticed if you make everyone uncomfortable.

I guess the key is the same as the old comedians' adage, "Always leave them wanting more." Intrigue your audience, but don't show your hand too soon. I know from my (limited) experience, advertising is a "fake it 'til you make it" game. I wasn't sure I'd be able to hack it when I got my foot in the door, but I sure tried to make it sound like I was sure.

If you're trying to get into advertising, you're probably already an interesting person. Just let that shine through, and you'll be fine.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Ponder is back, more embedable than ever!

Ever since WonderGroup started the Ponder podcast, I've been posting link to the WonderBlog and such for you adboys and adgirls to listen in. Well, this morning the technical lobe of my primitive copywriter brain has evolved, and I learned to embed audio on this biscuit.

It turns out, the interwebs is full of non-porn related information as well. I went to the Google Well, cast in one of my eyes and out came pages of info about embedding audio on Blogger.

So enjoy, now in a more convenient package.

Next time on Pig City: Getting noticed!

UPDATE: I t looks like you have to make the jump to hear the podcast if you subscribe through Google Reader. Intertubes wins again.