Have you ever looked at an ad and wondered HOW THE HELL it got approved? Advertising professionals know what I am talking about. My favorite example is watching the Mountain Dew Kickstart “Puppy Monkey Baby” super bowl commercial in 2016. I have never been so embarrassed for my profession.
Advertising is the hardest profession in the world in 2019. Yep, I said it. We are expected by paying clients to come up with brilliant campaign concepts that cater to their opinions and the audience, all while battling the chaos of digital and social media. We have to constantly be thinking of how to stay relevant. Even the biggest companies (Coke, Pepsi, etc.) are cranking out a ridiculous amount of content on a daily basis. Now that opens up some serious vulnerabilities.
Think of all the recent content blunders.
- Pepsi Kendall Jenner Commercial.
- The try-and-fail of Brew Dog IPA for Girls.
- Heineken Light Is Better European Campaign.
Whoa! You make a single mistake and a frenzy starts on the internet. So how do you stay clear (I mean, really clear) of making any of these mistakes on the job?
Diversity is Key
It is ok to admit that we all grow up in our own little bubbles. But in an agency, it’s so important to surround yourself with diverse backgrounds and experiences. They can bring much-needed perspective to an idea and how it would be perceived by other ethnicities, genders, etc.
Always have someone in creative brainstorms that digs up the dirtiest, most inappropriate thoughts of how your ad can be perceived. An inappropriate game of devil’s advocate could save you from a big mistake. You might want to reconsider using the word flexible in your headline.
Luckily for us, everything is published on the internet. We can constantly be looking for somebody else’s failure and making sure we consider those that have been offended.
So, in this crazy life of advertising, slow down, breathe, and really dig into how your campaign is being perceived. Have as many eyes as possible look at what you’re creating. It will never hurt to be extra cautious.
And for the love, please do not make the 2015 Bud Light mistake.