‘There’s Nothing Better Than a Scared, Rich Candidate’

“Put the right images on the screen and the right words in the script, and all the candidate has to do is read the lines. Politicians aren’t leaders—they’re interchangeable products to be packaged and sold.”

“The Republican pollster John McLaughlin, who told then–House Majority Leader Eric Cantor he was leading his 2014 primary by 34 points shortly before he lost, had a track record of giving clients bad information. McLaughlin still gets hired today.”

“The vast majority of presidential elections […] can be forecast based on the state of the nation’s economy and the approval rating of the sitting president.”

Molly Ball, The Atlantic

People are deleting advertising from their lives

“People are deleting advertising from their lives. Many simply don’t like or want it and now for the first time they have a choice in the matter. With the shift to streaming, the so-called ‘millennial’ has abandoned linear TV and, in turn, the ads that grace it. Higher-income consumers are more able to afford an ad-free existence by paying subscriptions for ad-free service experiences such as YouTube Red, Hulu+, or Spotify. This further erodes the pool of young, upwardly-mobile consumers that the ad industry so covets. In the future, only older, poorer people will experience advertising.”

And those ads you “see” online?

“A display ad is considered as ‘viewed by the visitor’ if “at least 50% of its pixels were displayed on the visitor’s browser for at least one continuous second.”

The Ad Industry’s Existential Crisis

Humans out at advertising agency

Marketing communications firm (plans) “to utilize technology-based resources such as software, virtual robots, and media algorithms to create and implement advertising and marketing programs for its clients.” Excerpts below from The Ad Contrarian:

”We will need to keep a few tech people on staff to insure that our systems are functioning well and are properly integrated. But that’s it. Last-century resources like account managers, copywriters, art directors, and media planners — in other words, people — will be replaced by digital resources.”

”We have developed what we call ‘virtual robotics’ that can actually understand a client brief when it is converted into code via a proprietary algorithm we have developed. The robot program then goes online and hunts down previously created advertising and marketing campaigns in similar categories which it ‘borrows’ from — much like a traditional creative team does,” he explained.

I wrote a lot of radio commercials (we called them “spots”) over the years and while I wrote a few good ones, many were of grind-it-out-get-it-on-the-air variety. Yeah, I can imagine software doing those as well as I did.

The people formerly known as advertisers

Media researcher Gordon Borrell says “we’ve reached the end of the Golden Age of Advertising.”

  • 82% of SMBs have established their own media channel in the form of a website or social media page.
  • Since 2007, spending has skyrocketed to the point at which businesses last year spent 72% more on marketing services and promotions than they had spent 10 years earlier. Meanwhile, the annual expenditure on local advertising was 22% less than it was a decade ago.
  • “Over the next 12 months, the gap will almost certainly widen to the point that all traditional advertising channels — print, broadcast, outdoor and mail — begin to look like niche support mechanisms to a local businesses’ digital marketing plan.”

Chase Apple Pay ad with Bleachers


“The ad — in which Apple was heavily involved according to AdAge — follows members of an indie band as they prepare for a show by making purchases with their Chase Freedom card through Apple Pay. One gets a haircut, for instance, while another has his guitar tuned.”

My first thought on watching this ad was, “Pretty cool for a bank.” Upon closer look I saw that Apple was “heavily involved” so… Wonder if someone at Chase went to Apple and said help us make this cool, or if Apple reached out to Chase and said why don’t you let us make this cool for you.

Been using Apple Pay here at The Coffee Zone for a week now and it reminds me a bit of using my key fob to unlock the MINI. When I approach my car I just automatically click the unlock button. When I approach cash registers, will I reach for my phone without thinking?

We Were Never Born

WE WERE NEVER BORN from Dosnoventa on Vimeo.

I’m not a big fan of the 30 second commercial (I’m referring to TV spots here since I don’t remember the last time I heard a radio spot). I find most advertising mindless and insulting. Not all, but most. But I love it when a company finds a way to touch me that leaves me feeling good about myself (and the company/product).

The video above (4 minutes) –produced for Dosnoventa Bikes– includes “a haunting, Johnny-Cashlike voiceover by James Phillips and beautifully curated music by Pink Floyd and Cash himself.”