Category Archives: Commerce
Well this is interesting.
This is the Direct Marketing Association’s attempted analysis of the state of the copywriting industry. The film – Madmen v Mavens – poses several questions to two separate groups; one of seasoned agency writers, and another of young whippersnapper writers. The results are interesting – see for yourself and let me know what you think.
I’ve written a couple of blogs for different organisations this month. They all had one thing in common; they wanted to give their opinion on something relevant to their industry or area of expertise without offending or alienating customers and service users. Which isn’t that simple, because it’s very easy to offend when you critique. Not because you’re being aggressive, but because others may be defensive.
To really withdraw from this risk, you need to sit on the fence. In this position, you can balance the view from both fields. Which is fine when you want to produce bland copy that helps people explore both sides of a coin. But, when you’re looking for something attention-grabbing, sitting on the fence – as the saying goes – gives you splinters. Personally, I don’t get on with opinion ‘from the fence’. Not just because I don’t want to spend my evening removing splinters, but because I don’t trust it.
So, what do you do? You take a clear position. Here are the benefits:
An interesting piece popped up on Yahoo News last week; an account about a council tax scam where fraudsters contact you to say you’re due a financial reward as a thank you for paying your bill by direct debit.
Now I don’t know about you, but the concept of my local council financially rewarding me for paying tax would be enough to make me click ‘SPAM’ faster than you can say ‘seriously unlikely state incentive’. However, clearly enough people were falling for this to warrant its broadcast, albeit hidden within the confused jumble that is Yahoo’s landing page. So I read the whole thing and there – towards the end – was a paragraph about spelling.
I’ve been reading a few blogs by fairly well-lit individuals in the business and marketing world. Some appear to conjure up new concepts on a regular basis. Quite aside from how exhausting this must be, it made me think about whether it’s actually possible to come up with more than one Big Idea.
One or two of my subscriptions include the blogs of successful business gurus, considered experts who are watched by a certain sector of Corporate plc for the next big thing – this on the basis that they’ve already delivered one widely adopted Big Idea. But are subsequent pearls of wisdom original new ideas of value and reason for contact, or just the same story set in a different scene?