Where has the time gone?

Where has the time gone?
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Ask a colleague, a client, a suppler how they are and ‘busy’ is invariably the response.

Never mind the question of when busy became an emotion; I think this raises broader questions about us as a society. More specifically, what does ‘busy’ say about our industry? And what are the implications?

Let’s take it as written that everyone in our industry is busy, full diaries, stand up meetings, rapid prototyping, agile and flexible, no time to even sit down and have a lunch or have a chat, best do that at my desk. 

In part, this is due to the reality of a media landscape in constant change, more complex and more demanding than ever before.  Keeping across this eats up time and makes previously simple tasks harder. Not to mention, it’s an industry reality that we are all expected to do more with less.

We also work within an advertising environment where consumers are increasingly bombarded by advertising messages wherever they go – by some reports at least five thousand times each day. Creating work that can cut through in this environment is truly an outstanding accomplishment.

Invariably this work is grounded from the creation of an idea that is emotional and engaging, clearly differentiating the brand from its competitors.

It’s incredibly hard to achieve and as such we all seek to understand how advertising magic is created and ask if it can it be recreated in changing environments.

This idea generation comes best with one thing: time. Time to think, time to create, time to explore, time to test, time to reflect.

Yet it is this very precious asset that it now negotiated.

A one day turn around for an ‘innovative, first to market idea’. Really? How has this become even remotely acceptable? 

Do you think the campaign around ‘Dumb Ways to Die’ took a day to create?

Clients consistently want the best, most innovative campaign that engages their target audience. Campaigns of this calibre don’t happen overnight.

In a world of ‘busy-ness’ we have to start being counterintuitive and create time; carve it out, cherish it and push back when it’s being compromised.  There are no guarantees but time will increase the likelihood of making an idea even more compelling, durable, engaging and ultimately successful.

So let’s give time the respect it deserves and let’s hope when we ask colleagues how they are we start getting something other than just ‘busy’.  Let’s get inspired. Let’s get excited.

Craig Galvin is digital strategy director at News Corp Australia. 

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