Less Shouting, More Communicating: Advertising Grows Up

Gee Ranasinha Business

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There are many who’ll say that today’s TV advertising is crass, blatant and bereft of creativity. Then an ad such as this comes along (click here if you can’t see the ad below):

I’ve only just been made aware of the piece, which was launched back in October 2011. Instead of doing the usual thing of boring the viewer with hyped rhetoric about how great / affordable / whatever their holiday packages are, Thomson Holidays turn the message around to it being about you, the viewer, with a simple voiceover from a young boy:

“It’s time you stopped, put down your phone, and hold your loved one’s hand. Nice, isn’t it? Those close to you: share with them a week or two, and they’ll cherish it forever.”

They could have shouted about how great / interesting / value for money / whatever their holidays are, as pretty much every holiday company does in their advertising. They could have packed the spot with bright colors, loud music and flashing images and shoved their message down the viewer’s throat.

Instead, we have calm, relaxing visuals, with a soundtrack featuring a orchestral reworking of The Pixies’ 1988 track “Where Is My Mind?” (the piano solo was apparently recorded by the ad’s producer, Guy Farley).

Advertising That Thinks Differently

By thinking differently, Thomson Holidays succeeded in raising their message above the noise. The result is a poignant, moving piece of advertising that’s pretty much guaranteed to tug on the emotions of anyone who’s ever felt guilty about how much time they spend at work.

The advertising industry is going through a bit of an internal crisis at the moment. On the one hand clients are looking for ads that stand-out from the humdrum, while ad agency bosses are under increased pressure to deliver shareholder value based on safe, tried-and-tested thinking – the absolute opposite of what we’d regard as ‘creativity’.

But standing-out is increasingly the only way of gaining attention.

Today, pretty much the only way to elevate your business value communication above the average is to stop being average.  No-one takes notice of the average any more. If your company isn’t making waves in its advertising, its messaging, its customer service, its branding, then no one can see you.

In a world dominated by shades of grey, we’ve taken to only notice of the blacks and the whites as a way of filtering out all of the content that’s competing for our attention. Unless you are clearly demonstrating to your target markets how you’re different, and (therefore) why they should be buying from you as opposed to someone else, you risk being drowned-out by the sea of mediocrity.

In which case, make sure you bring a tube of sunblock with you.

About the Author
Avatar for Gee Ranasinha

Gee Ranasinha

Gee Ranasinha is CEO and founder of KEXINO. He's been a marketer since the days of 56K modems, lectures on marketing and behavioral economics at a European business school, and was noted as one of the top 100 global business influencers by sage.com (those wonderful people who make financial software).

Originally from London, today Gee lives in a world of his own in Strasbourg, France, tolerated by his wife and young son.

Find out more about Gee at kexino.com/gee-ranasinha. Follow him on Twitter at KEXINO, on Facebook at facebook.com/ranasinha, or on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/in/ranasinha.


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