« looking for a job? | Main | music for working »


Great stuff. This type of thing works really well in creative briefing, anything that sparks them off.

This is great when you are presenting something that’s genuinely new or need explaining, but you could say that it’s also led to the tyranny of insight theatre.

As we speak, I’m putting together ‘a few slides’ for a press ad we’re presenting to the client tomorrow. The ad will run once in the programme of a forth-coming motorshow to drive visitors to their stand. It’s a quick and easy, simple thing. It’s unlikely to be featured at Cannes. Yet some people still feel it’s necessary to give it some sort of elaborate set-up, chronically the complex journey we embarked upon to arrive at this strategic breakthrough.

Perhaps it comes down to clients in the end. Some seem to have a deep-routed need for this sort of thing, others just want you to cut to the chase.

No shoes? That's just crazy!

Having worked with Crispen's and having friends at Crispen's ... I can honestly say they are a great agency who do great work.

However, whislt they truly understand the concept of creative research techniques and entertainment [which is always great] the article smacks of a bunch of people desperate to be seen as 'serious' rather than a 'novelty'.

It's what we call the 'Jim Carrey' syndrome.

This is when an actor becomes incredibly successful with a style of movie but craves the acceptance of the industry to be seen as a 'real' actor.

What they end up doing is a bunch of serious roles [or call their planners 'cognitive anthropologists'] because they believe this is what it takes to be regarded as a real artist.

Of course they never really get there and even if they think they do, like Tom Hanks, people still go - 'Are you the bloke from 'Batchelor Party?'

Personally I don't think Crispen's should worry about any of it ... they're doing better work than 99% of the agencies out there AND have client cred ... and whilst the article will be a great new biz generator, I have to say that they've gone down in my estimation a little bit [sorry steve!] because no one likes people with 'tickets on themselves' ... except maybe the Yanks, hahaha!

rob: we've just read your post and the office want to know if you think you're a bit hypocritical slagging crispen's when we're about to publish a book on how we work with an fbi profiler, comedian and economist to get better insights for our clients.

just wondering?

and you spelt Carey's name wrong!

Andy ... stop trying to show off in front of all these people, it's not big and it's not clever - abit like you really!


Russell - nice insight.

Good advertisements tell a story and similarly to sell a concept you need to tell a story. As managers we like to think of ourselves as logical, but facts themselves are generally tedious unless they are set in a context that helps us understand them – and stories do that.

Planning is theatre - it is also therapy. Advertising strategies provide managers with ways to understand their situation and with reassurance that the future will work out.

(Freud didn’t get famous because his ideas were logical and scientific – he was a captivating storyteller, and his stories helped his audience make sense of themselves.)

Follow your blog and love it – from a transplanted Brit in Toronto.

Tom Beakbane

Thanks for this post. Reminds me of a Jeff Goodby quote on "Got Milk" - i'll paraphrase it here - Strategy folks think that they've got it all figured out, and that the job's done. But that's only half the work done. Writing is the act of creation..or somesuch

It is indeed theatre, but we like it, just as much as client deign to, at times :)

The comments to this entry are closed.