Balancing Brand and Performance in Advertising

Feb 24, 2020 / Industry Insights / FOTW

At our most recent event, we discussed the importance of balancing both brand and performance marketing. Orlando Wood, Chief Innovation Officer at System1 Group spoke about both left and right brain activity – and how this influences the way we respond to both arts, culture and ultimately – advertising around us, while Marlon Griffin, Creative Director at FOTW took us through his top tips for crafting cut-through.

Our keynote speaker, Peter Field shared the data supporting the worrying popularity of “short-termism” – the need to focus on short-term activations without considering the long-term brand growth of your business. We hope to arm you with the ‘Key Takeaways’ to kick start your conversations with clients and the c-suite.

Orlando Wood – Chief Innovation Officer – System1 Group

Orlando’s new book ‘Lemon’ offers a diagnosis but also a cure for addressing the Crisis in Creative Effectiveness. The last 20 years or so have seen a tremendous change in business in technology but also an urge towards standardisation, centralisation and specialisation. These urges leave inevitable changes in culture, and we see it reflected in a flatness and devitalisation across art, culture, society and in advertising.

Stemmed in history and still present today, there is a loss of sense of betweenness, a flatness and a devitalisation: in television and culture more broadly. At different times in history, you see swings towards left brain thinking. In people, society in business and certainly in advertising.

The two halves of our brain are different in the way they attend to the world. The left brain is narrow, literal and goal orientated. The right brain is broad and vigilant. It understands people, connections and the full context of things. What we need for great creative leaps is the whole brain but today’s analytical culture is resulting in left-brained advertising that doesn’t move people.

System1 measure emotional response in a scalable way to generate a star rating that gives you the ability to adjust SOV to predict and better explain market share growth. Advertising with depth and humanity is more likely to result in market share growth over the long-term. For every ten percentage points of excess SOV, you get half a percentage point of market share gain in the following period.

Marlon Griffin – Creative Director – FOTW

Marlon uses his 20 years in advertising experience to address how great response-driven creative work comes from knowing how to tackle the ‘sweet spot’ between rational decision-making and emotional influences. Revealing his top tips for “crafting the cut-through” to ensure all creative work exceeds brand and business goals.

The Trigger Line helps us land the brand quickly rooting it in the creative story. Use the visual narrative to support the creative storyline and demonstrate the product. Don’t bombard the viewer with a load of facts and figures. Viewers will disengage with too many messages and the brain will shut down. As a rule of thumb keep it simple.

Face Time. We naturally engage with the expressions of others, and when great actors portray emotions we feel their joy, euphoria and pain. Our engagement increases when we see this full screen and close up. So, remember to show those moments big and proud.

The Power of Sound. The music, sound effect and spoken word is 50% of the immersive experience. It sets the tone and the emotion. You can control how the viewer engages with advertising by using the right music, sound and VO at the exact moment you want to evoke a reaction.

Peter Field – Effectiveness Expert & Author

A growing number of businesses have had their fingers badly burnt by perusing the seductive logic of not worrying about the long term – let’s just make sure we have a good week or quarter and the long term will take care of itself. If you live in the short term, you are more likely to die in the long term. Peter calls for a rethink on creativity and how best to use it.

The lens from which we have to view effectiveness is one: short term sale activations and two: long term brand building. When you get the two working well together, the tills ring! You don’t build brands in one or two weeks of activations even with powerful ideas. Brand building turbocharges activation.

Brand is the key to pricing power. If we are not strengthening the brand we are very unlikely to have any significant effect to command a premium. The single most important decision in evaluating a business is pricing power, because it gives you security and growth in earnings.

ROI should be one of many metrics used to judge success not the primary one. If you obsess over ROI you will go down the performance marketing route. Our ability to strengthen the brand correlates strongly with long term profit growth. ROI is about low hanging fruit, if we want to drive long term growth we have to bring people in who don’t know us, don’t like us, don’t think of us and maybe aren’t even in the market yet. The most important metric for the growth of business is the ability to increase penetration. This is how to reach the fruit at the top of the tree.

10 years ago we had a fantastic story – typically creatively awarded campaigns were up to 13 times more effective as non-creatively awarded ones. Around 2006 the effects of short-termism start to grow and creativity started to be seduced into short term, left brain thinking and the slide accelerated.

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