One person’s brave is another person’s stupid

If you’re not in the habit of reading a lot of marketing websites and happen you stumble into one you could be forgiven for not really understanding what’s going on.

Sure there’s the occasional nice thing said, but often times there’s furious debate, heated words, vapid and droll comments smirking, biting and poking at each other all deftly used to smite thy enemy and done oh-so-bravely behind a protective wall of anonymity. You could be forgiven for thinking those commenting on the articles are debating climate change science, or ways to cure aggressive cancer.

But no, more than likely it’s because a company changed their agency and tried a new campaign and direction – or because a company didn’t change agency and didn’t change their current campaign and direction. That’s not to suggest these things are less important than efforts to cure cancer or the prevention of climate change (in the minds of the readers), but that’s what’s being talked about nonetheless.

There is one word in particular that marketers and agency people alike enjoy using when it suits to defend work, or as a source of acclaim that is that the work in question is ‘brave‘.

Much like the over used defense ‘God works in mysterious ways‘, ‘brave‘ is whipped out to stave off any argument that what’s been produced is ‘reckless’ or ‘stupid’.

And furious debate and whether something is brave or stupid is fine because the only thing that really matters is ‘did it work with the target market?’

And this really is the point. Forget everyone wanting to have their say, what should be focused on is did the campaign hit the spot with the market? Did the consumer change their perception of the product in the way the company wanted them to? Did the consumer buy more? Did they switch from a competitor? Did the message work because it shocked them, made them laugh, educated them or made them simply feel something?

In short, did the company accomplish its goal with the campaign?

This isn’t to say that industry websites should be ignored, far from it, there is valuable feedback to be garnered and discussion is great but the primary focus should be on results.

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