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August 25, 2005

What creatives should learn from a media test

I read David Kiley's most recent Brand New Day column and winced.

Kiley is reporting on Project Wanamaker, a media test in Omaha, Nebraska just up I-35 from yours truly.

The basic plot of the test is that TV spots reach saturation levels much quicker than most clients and agencies believe. In fact, according to the study, most spots should be on the air no more than two to three weeks followed by a week off and then running only a few days a week after.

If you're a creative and beginning to zone out, consider this: If you were a client, would you want to pay what your client paid the last time you went to L.A. to shoot a spot that is, according to this study, good for just two weeks? That's the question Kiley asks. And it's the question clients have been asking for ages. Does production really have to cost this much?

Here's an excerpt from the column:

"...With the pressure to create more ads that run less frequently, look too for all production to increasingly move offshore to Canada, South Africa and even India where an advanced film industry operates for a fraction of the cost of Hollywood and New York, and production can be controlled via computer link-ups without a lot of agency personnel having to actually fly to Bombay."

Outsourcing production to India? Come on, kids. We can figure this out. Can't we? All it takes is open minds. Open-minded creatives, open-minded producers, open-minded production partners. So simple in pixels. So not simple in real life. But we'd better get our collective heads around this. Here's something else from Kiley's column:

"And the head of a big media buying firm told me he was looking at starting his own creative department to produce ads at a more affordable price than his clients' ad agencies could....Not only are media buying/planning firms increasingly running the show on an advertiser's account (because there is more creativity required these days to figure out how to get a consumern to actually see the ad) but they are, like Pac Man, about to turn back on the creatives at traditional ad agencies who used to scoff at "the media people" by cutting into their business of creating the ads."

Geez Louweez.

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Listed below are links to weblogs that reference What creatives should learn from a media test:

» Media Planners Elbow In On Creative from AdPulp
John January at American Copywriter points to Business Week writer, David Kiley's latest blog entry on Brand New Day. The piece suggests TV spots ought not run more than two to three weeks, based on MediaCheck research. Given the average... [Read More]

» Glamorous, High Cost TV Commercial Production to End from Adrants
Sullivan Higdon & Sink VP Creative Director and one half of the American Copywriter podcast team John January has weighed in on the recent Project Wannamaker study by The PreTesting Company which found creative effectiveness burns out after two... [Read More]

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