It seems that marketing budgets fall into two camps these days: I cut my budget because why throw good money after bad. Or, I am spending a lot less but I still getting no immediate results. It has been said that we create the worst of habits in the best of times and I think the “good ole’ days” of the early 2000’s have given us a microscope instead of a telescope. What I mean by this is marketing, like wise investing, should be done with the long-term in mind, not the short-term. Placing every marketing decision under a microscope when we know times are tough is like watching your 401k bounce around everyday. In the end, you create a lot of anxiety and are so short-term focused that we often begin to make emotional decisions because we need some instant gratification. And if the dollar did not move the needle in 30 days, then it was a dollar wasted.
“Let us prove to the world,” wrote William Bernbach in his 1949 manifesto for the “creative revolution,” “that good taste, good art, good writing can be good selling.”
This is from an article on AdAge.com about the best ad campaigns of the century that I stumbled on when trying to find a little needed inspiration.
I think this is a timely reminder of where we came from. Before the days of google and SEO, or even Apple and Photoshop, we were a people of great ideas. An industry driven by a purpose. And that purpose was to sell. I can’t remember who said it but “No one makes a dime until someone sells something” has always rang true to me. Driven to work all day and stay up all night, kick and scream and fight over the good and bad, we have always been driven by the power of a simple idea. And most of the time, the simplest of ideas are the hardest to find.
These great ideas were not created without effort, or without