Why Constantly Kicking Aussie Media Is Bad News For Agency Land

Why Constantly Kicking Aussie Media Is Bad News For Agency Land
SHARE
THIS



In his latest column, B&T regular, Robert Strohfeldt from Strohfeldt Consulting, says, as an industry, agency land has become too obsessed with the platform when, in reality, the media still remains the most important thing…

A twist on a famous campaign quote used by Bill Clinton – “It’s the Economy Stupid”. (For the trivia buffs it was coined by James Carville, his campaign strategist. Politicians rarely come up with the good ones). Reading Monday’s The Australian media and marketing section, Peta Credlin, used almost the same wording when referring to the Coalition Government’s use of all available media options.

Politics learned their approach to communications from marketers. (They are “selling”, after all). Her point was that with the diverse media landscape, effort must be put into everything be it TV, radio, press, online, social – but the best media mix won’t save you if your message is a dud.

So, although much has changed on the media front, quality and continuity of message are still the most critical considerations and are the difference between success and failure in the polls.

Creative used to be the sharp end of the advertising spear, but media is where the action is today. So much time, effort and money (to be fair, media is by far the largest chunk of an advertiser’s budget) goes into media, particularly digital, that the message is all but overlooked, an after- thought.

Even though 90 per cent-plus of an advertiser’s budget has always gone into media, it was viewed simply as the platform to carry the all-important message. Of course, media pays a pivotal role, but all this money was being spent to carry messages that built the brand and generated sales.

When creative and media were separated, I doubt at the time anyone could look in a crystal ball and predict the media landscape as it is today. It seemed like a good idea at the time.

Now the Barbarians are at the gates and people and business are shifting to advisory and management consulting firms. The Big ‘Eight’ then ‘Six’ and now ‘Four’ chartered accounting firms have been slowly increasing their suite of services since they all first started. Now they call themselves advisory firms – accounting and marketing/advertising didn’t seem to sit well together.

Agencies have lost the sum of the parts advantage of having media and creative under the same roof. We have forgotten the most basic of equations:

Media + Message = Advertising.

As more and more dollars shift online, the sheer volume of inventory of online media has necessitated programmatic planning and buying. One small problem with this – according to the chief brand officer of the world’s biggest advertiser, Proctor & Gamble, only about 25 per cent of digital advertising is seen by consumers. (The rest ends up in bots, scams, porn and extremist websites – anywhere but in front of the target market).

John Wanamaker (1838 to 1922), who pioneered fixed prices and money back guarantees, once famously said “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted, trouble is I don’t know which half.” And here we are 100 years later, with technology coming out our, um, well you know and now that 50per cent has dropped to 25 per cent.

The basics don’t change – highly effective communications are not just what you say, but how you say it. There are so many different platforms/conduits to the consumer now, the message must be tailored to best suit the nuances of each. Integration is a mandatory – very few (if any) products/services can effectively reach their target using just one platform.

But media and creative have become two separate businesses. “Divide and conquer”, the saying goes. Well, we have divided ourselves.

A report from this year’s annual Cannes advertising conference stated that all the waterfront hotels and action on the super yachts was monopolised by the Martech and digital ad businesses, whilst creative agencies were relegated to accommodation in the backblocks, away from the glamorous waterfront.

The message, the heart of advertising, has lost its primacy. It is much more than just the message though, it is how you say it – the creative execution. The barbarians have never been overly creative or artistic. (And neither is AI).

Please login with linkedin to comment

Latest News

Victorian Government Launches VR Bushfire Experience Via The Fuel Agency
  • Advertising
  • Campaigns
  • Technology

Victorian Government Launches VR Bushfire Experience Via The Fuel Agency

As part of its summer fire campaign, the Victorian government has launched a virtual reality (VR) bushfire experience and content series via The Fuel Agency. The VR experience places the user in the midst of a large bushfire, and is designed to encourage people to leave early on high-risk days before it’s too late. The […]

Local Ad Tech Company VeNA Partners With RugbyPass
  • Advertising
  • Media
  • Technology

Local Ad Tech Company VeNA Partners With RugbyPass

ad tech company VeNA has signed an exclusive reseller partnership covering Australia and New Zealand with digital rugby network RugbyPass. Across Asia and parts of Europe, RugbyPass is the exclusive digital rights holder and over-the-top broadcaster for live rugby, including the Super Rugby, the Rugby Championship and autumn internationals, the Six Nations, the Aviva Premiership, […]

SpotX Appoints Gavin Buxton As Asia MD
  • Advertising

SpotX Appoints Gavin Buxton As Asia MD

Video advertising platform SpotX has announced it has appointed Gavin Buxton as managing director of Asia to lead the company’s expansion in the region. Buxton has over 17 years’ global experience in the digital advertising space, having worked in leadership roles at tech and publishing companies, including Microsoft, Turner Broadcasting, and LinkedIn, with the last […]

Big Mobile Doubles Down On Ad Tech & Rebrands
  • Advertising
  • Technology

Big Mobile Doubles Down On Ad Tech & Rebrands

B&T Awards 2017 finalist Big Mobile has unveiled a fresh look to reflect its new ad tech credentials. The company successfully pivoted its business from ad network to mobile ad tech vendor when it announced a joint venture (JV) with Widespace in October last year. As a result of the business changes, Big Mobile wanted […]

March One Appoints New Senior Account Manager
  • Advertising

March One Appoints New Senior Account Manager

Independent ad agency March One has appointed a fresh face to the team, with Melanie Tozer to reinforce its mission to put humans first as a senior account manager. Tozer (pictured above), an up-and-coming talent from New Zealand, will align her extensive experience in FMCG marketing with March One, having worked on accounts for Bunnings […]