Creative Advertising: Don’t Try. Be Clever.
5 Easy Ways To Create Knockout Ideas
What makes this ad brilliant? Ants are dodging a fallen ‘treasure’ on the ground. Weird? Intriguing? Puzzling? Take a closer look at the tagline and that’s because “It’s sugar free”!
When it comes to advertising, a powerful creative concept that can succinctly translate its Unique Value Proposition (UVP) will capture a captive audience like netting a shoal of fish.
What Is A Creative Concept?
A creative concept is an overarching “Big Idea” or unifying theme strategically designed to capture audience interest, influence their emotional response and inspire them to take action.
Why Is Creative Advertising Important?
We see hundreds of ads per week, but often, we cannot even recall three ads that are creative. Logically, you may have a better product, selling at a lower price, with a measurably well-known history than your competitors. But if your creativity does not stand out in an advertising-bombarded world, you are simply flushing money down the drain.
“I am one who believes that one of the greatest dangers of advertising is not that of misleading people, but that of boring them to death.” Leo Burnett
The Power Of Creative Advertising
So how do you grab audience attention. Tickle their senses in a crowded ad space. Make them hold their breath for more. Turn them into die-hard followers.
“Make it simple. Make it memorable. Make it inviting to look at. Make it fun to read.” Leo Burnett
The success of powerful creative ads is all about being able to mesmerise. Create memorability. Motivate your audience into action.
So What Is Creative Advertising?
Is a creative ad simply clever? Or funny? If people remember the ad, but not what it is for, it was probably creative, but it would not be an effective ad. When looking for creative ad campaigns, we cannot afford to simply be creative for the sake of creativity, without talking about advertising.
Real-time, Fleet-footed Advertising
In 2016, when Angelina Jolie filed for divorce from Brad Pitt, fleet-footed brand Norwegian caught hold of the celebrity news story by gripping the world with its “Brad is single” one-way low fare to Los Angeles within 72 hours of the news breaking.
The advertising went viral, exuding the intended wit, charm and playfulness of the brand that took imaginative, creative flight. With strategic media channels placed across Scandinavia, Spain and the UK, the ad generated maximum impact as the public integrated Norwegian’s humour in their conversations. This is a good example of real-time advertising executed to trigger audiences into conversations and action.
Here are a few advertisements that made marketing history and have burrowed their way into the minds of customers. Check out their creativity, cleverness and impact. Here’s how you can apply some principles of creativity.
1. Apply Caricature Thinking
A caricature is a portrayal with gross exaggerations of noticeable qualities, usually for comedic effect. Caricature thinking is simply taking your service or product’s uniqueness to the extreme to deeply demonstrate your characteristic.
Hamburg-based design agency KNSK nailed this print advert for the WMF Grand Gourmet knife. This ad’s tagline states “Sharper Than You Think” to sharpen their competitive edge. Using pure humorous exaggeration, this simple yet ridiculous visual pushes the concept of sharpness to an impossible edge. The benefit? Effortless easy cutting. The message? Don’t mess around with our knives.
2. Demonstrate The Incredible Impact Of That One Benefit
This print ad from Weight Watchers is blatantly bold on its value proposition: Enter large. Exit skinny. Brilliant!
3. Connect By Turning Your Idea Into A Relatable Story
Targeting people who were already drinking milk, California Milk Processor Board’s “Got Milk?” campaign draws on the parody of X-men Wolverine’s adamentium (a fictional metal alloy in American comic books) fused to his bones to dramatically push for the calcium needed in bones. The result of this ad? Milk sales in California rose 7% in just one year.
4. Tickle Your Audience With A Hilarious Visual
In order to alarm and inform the public about the rising problem of child obesity in France, the French Ministry Of Health launched a public campaign with a powerful diet-related visual pointing out the problem which starts very young.
5. Use (Dark) Humour To Scare Audience Into Action
DDB Mozambique took a humorous route with this print ad for Lirandzo condoms to highlight the importance of safe sex. The designs feature famously terrifying youngsters from well-recognised horror stories such as the creepy twins from The Shining, and The Ring’s goosebump-inducing Samara. Don’t want these horrors living in your house? Grab a condom!
Taking Creativity To The Next Level
While there is no one-size-fits-all solution to creative and effective advertising, there are some integral approaches to birthing creative ideas.
1. Make It Magically Imaginative
Many marketers commonly get bogged down thinking about what people might be interested in, that they neglect envisioning the magical encounters in our lives. One way is to imagine and turn the drudgery of ordinary living into something extraordinary… to get people musing, laughing, turning their heads or replaying it in their minds for days. To achieve this, simply observe. Pull out intriguing elements. Fuse them into your next campaign.
2. Be Distinctive
Your ability to be noticed and remembered in an ocean of advertising takes making your brand distinctive. Your messaging and idea must stand out to not just compete within your category, but to compete for that attention against the world. Do not waste your advertising efforts being ordinary.
3. Brand Intrinsically
Your brand is at the heart of your creative. Never put yourself out there by emulating other award-winning ads. Be yourself. Pull out your uniqueness. Surface your superb functionality. Pack a punch with your brand service. Capture your audience by cleverly demonstrating the one unique thing that fulfills their emotional, functional and social needs.
4. Trigger An Emotional Response
Create positive effects through emotional associations. Your ad can make your viewers surprised, amazed, laugh or cry. Make them feel a special connection. That your brand truly understands and values them.
Beyond Awareness, Into Memorability
It is not enough to just create brilliant ads. It is not always about harvesting new audiences only to see them seep away in a leaking bucket syndrome.
Many times, it is about getting your current audience to appreciate, use your product more often, and turning them into advocates. All this, by strategically deepening the impact and memorability of your brand through brilliantly creative ads.
Don’t try. Be clever.