Right Brain, Left Brain Blog

34 posts categorized "Storytelling"

11 July 2016

Why brands can’t afford to ignore #Unstereotype

If brands want their advertising and marketing communications to resonate with women, then they have to understand that using simplistic one-dimensional stereotypes in their messaging no longer works.

Arguably, the statistic prompting the biggest reaction at this year’s Cannes Lions Festival was revealed by Unilever’s Keith Weed. During his presentation on why and how the FMCG giant is radically changing its female-focused advertising strategy, he announced that 40% of women do not identify with the images of them portrayed by most ads, while just 3% of Unilever’s ads feature women in leadership roles and 1% show women being funny.

As Weed disclosed more and more of the findings, a vivid picture emerged of the huge gap between how female identity is evolving and the version presented by advertising. Credit was widely given to Unilever for committing to develop more culturally relevant and resonant work to combat gender stereotyping and more accurately reflect society.

However, Weed was also keen to point out that the change in tack wasn’t just driven by altruism, but was firmly underpinned by a commercial imperative. The research not only uncovered how female identity is evolving at break-neck speed, but also highlighted the opportunity for brands to do something about it and reap the reward.

Based on work Unilever carried out with The Futures Company to identify the evolving nature of female identity, Unilever have galvanized behind their goal to create more communications which show a progressive vision of female identity, by challenging themselves on three key dimensions of how women are represented: through their role, personality and appearance.

Continue reading "Why brands can’t afford to ignore #Unstereotype" »

04 July 2016

Think digital. Upfront.

We’re gearing up towards a milestone in the history of digital advertising. It’s something that has been predicted for a while now, but next year total digital ad spend will surpass TV for the first time. eMarketer predicts that, in 2017, it will hit $77.37bn in the US, taking 38.4% of the total ad spend, exceeding TV’s predicted $72.01bn (35.8%). A major driver is mobile video, which grew by 94% in 2015, according to the IAB.

But rather than seeing digital as a threat to TV advertising, the key is to think about it as a complement by enabling a user experience fit for the digital sphere. The explosion in online video usage and the proliferation of technology and devices have unlocked a wealth of opportunities for brands to tell their story through audio and visual means, yet research from Millward Brown found that 90% of online video is just repurposed TV material. The fact is that this just won’t cut it anymore.

There has never been a greater need for video content to be produced and tailored for the digital environment from the outset – it should no longer be just an afterthought. There’s no underestimating the power of TV to create that wonderful theatrical, cinematic experience, but it takes a different approach to deliver that same impact digitally.

Not enough focus is being put on digital in the early planning stages of campaigns. When developing a TV ad brief, there needs to be more of an emphasis on how video ad content is going to work in the digital world where there’s a wide range of screen sizes and formats to consider, not just for TV or cinema.

Continue reading "Think digital. Upfront." »

27 April 2016

Free your social conscience

The latest Persil #DirtIsGood campaign shows just how powerful brands can be when they align themselves with the right cause, says Lou Garrod of Sense.

“Daily outdoors time is probably the most important part of my day,” says an inmate of Wabash Maximum Security Prison in Indiana, USA in the latest Persil TV ad.

“To walk out that door and feel the sun on your face, it’s everything to me,” says another.

Each inmate is allowed at least two hours outside ‘yard time’ every day. But what has this got to do with Persil?

Continue reading "Free your social conscience" »

17 November 2015

Top Christmas ads 2015… so far

Christmas ads have become a bit of an event in themselves. No longer do consumers wait for the Coca Cola Christmas truck to grace their screens to mark the official start of Christmas, but a host of other brands have earnt themselves a bit of a name in bringing in the festive season. And this year has served up quite a few Christmas crackers.

Check out our pick of the top 7 festive ad offerings of 2015 so far…

‘Man on the Moon’

Brand: John Lewis
Agency: Adam&Eve/DDB
No of video views: 13,391,765*

One of the most eagerly anticipated Christmas ads of the year, British retailer John Lewis tells the story of a young girl determined to bring Christmas to a lonely old man living on the moon.

Continue reading "Top Christmas ads 2015… so far" »

06 November 2015

Christmas Ad of the Week: John Lewis ‘Man on the Moon’ (2015)

Jl 1

With Halloween now behind us, British retailer John Lewis sure knows how to get us in the Christmas spirit and what better way to mark the start of the festive season than unveiling its 2015 Christmas ad this morning (November 6).

In fact, it has become quite the tradition now as consumers around the world eagerly await this day every year (in fact, I even heard one say that they get more excited about the John Lewis Christmas ad than Christmas itself!)

And this year’s offering certainly doesn’t disappoint. Taking the key elements that have proven so successful in its past campaigns – tapping into customer emotions, centring on the connection between two characters and linking perfectly with the message to ‘Show someone they’re loved this Christmas’. 

Continue reading "Christmas Ad of the Week: John Lewis ‘Man on the Moon’ (2015)" »

21 September 2015

Animated cartoon ads: what's all the fuss about?

O2

The Rugby World Cup and O2 have chosen a softer, more positive, more inclusive and more youthful image for the advertising campaign to accompany its sponsorship of the English Rugby team. In prior years, the image was tough and gritty and targeted to the core "laddish" culture of rugby. The new advert is aiming to make the Rugby World Cup and the advert attractive to all young people including women and children.

The advert was the product of Blinkink, a company who also did the very successful Bear and the Hare advert for John Lewis in 2013.

Continue reading "Animated cartoon ads: what's all the fuss about?" »

01 September 2015

Less argument, more service

Constantly thinking up smart ways to try to convince people your product is great is exhausting for brands, agencies… and consumers. But there is another way, says Alex Smith, Planning Director at real world marketing agency Sense.

Hard to believe sometimes, but advertising is actually a service.

That sounds hopelessly quaint doesn’t it? In between agencies’ fantasies of working in the entertainment industry, and brands’ desire for ever higher profits, we sometimes forget the silent partner at the table – the humble consumer. 

For them, advertising is not where they turn for whimsy and ‘engagement’ (believe it or not, there’s actually a whole media industry out there devoted to just that, and which doesn’t have to flog products while they do so), and they also couldn’t give a hoot how healthy ‘x’ company’s bank balance is. Their needs are more simple: “Inform me of the things out there that will enrich my life.” 

Creating ‘service’ ads the achieve this – ads that people find useful – is quite tricky to deliver, however, for the simple reason that by definition they require a product that people actually need or want.

Take for example a concert or festival poster:

  Blog1 Blog2

Continue reading "Less argument, more service" »

14 July 2015

Style vs. substance: Do looks really matter in the digital age?

Garry Taylor, UK Art Director at Say Media, believes you should never judge a book entirely by its cover, but argues that online, first impressions really count.

Substance should always win out over style, right? However, in the digital world - where you have literally (milli) seconds to grab someone’s attention - first impressions still count. People make snap judgments all the time in daily life, forming lasting first impressions of people, places and products in an extraordinarily short period of time. You may make a final choice on a new perfume by testing it out with a little spray here or there, but how did you decide which perfumes to try on before you even smelt them?

When a reader lands on your website, it’s often their first interaction with your brand. That first impression your site’s design creates is crucial in grabbing users’ attention. Google research has confirmed that site visitors get an initial ‘gut feel’ for your site within 50 milliseconds of landing on it. By comparison, the average blink of an eye takes 100 to 400 milliseconds.

You can’t expect people to stick around if that first impression is dull or confusing. The quality of the content might be great, but what good is it if users get put off before ever reading a word?

First impressions not only count. They last.

Continue reading "Style vs. substance: Do looks really matter in the digital age?" »

About this blog

  • Right Brain, Left Brain sums up the dichotomy of a media business that’s constantly battling with the challenge of delivering a profit and discovering new ways to communicate to consumers. The Cream editorial team combined with a dream team of industry pioneers from around the world share their expert opinions.

Cream Subscribers

Other C Squared Products

C Squared logo

© C Squared Holdings Ltd.

115 Southwark Bridge Rd,
London, SE1 0AX.

Registered Number: 5272863
VAT REG NO: GB127 6174 12

Made with Fantastic Thinking