Ad Age on ad creep

 
 

Ad Age on ad creep

There's a fairly comprehensive article at Ad Age on the potential for backlash against "ad creep," the Mr. Hyde name for guerilla marketing tactics that push advertising into untraditional spaces.

The article cites a lot of examples of what I would call media buy expansions rather than "guerilla marketing"--the expansion of ad buys of block long scaffolding billboards is an expansion of traditional media rather than a true guerilla tactic. The studies they cite regarding public outcry are probably a bit overblown--people say they don't like TV ads either, but that doesn't stop them from watching them.

Part of the problem is that much of the ad creep is uncreative. People don't mind happening upon an ad, but it has to be subtle and make it worth their while. Ads don't HAVE to creep to be effective. And they aren't effective just because they creep. Bad advertising in new spaces is still bad advertising.

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Comments

I was tired of the word "guerrilla marketing" ages ago - I do like that expression "ad creep", it's creepy and it creeps up on you. I agree buying a large billboard isn't exactly new - nor is buying scaffolding - traditional media itself is a moving target. Before we never did advertise on scaffolding (except the scaffolding company) trucks, parking receipts, movie tickets, floors and so on. These days thats normal - every available space that is owned by someone has been sold as media, from blogs to foreheads. When Kirshenbaum ran the "from here it looks like you need new underwear" ad spraypainted on the pavement it was hilarious - using the media space as part of the idea. When Peace Love and Linux sprayed the town as if they were street artists it wasn't quite as funny. Target the target market, and tell them some information they want, don't scream at people who just happen to be walking by.

Trip down memory lane, the butterflies that polluted NYC they mention, the Peace Love and Linux campaign that IBM had to ask SUN for help to remove. The Sponsormymelon guy might have started that forehead ad craze that Cunning (formerly Cunningstunts) ran with.

>When Kirshenbaum ran the "from here it looks like you need new underwear" ad spraypainted on the pavement it was hilarious - using the media space as part of the idea. When Peace Love and Linux sprayed the town as if they were street artists it wasn't quite as funny.

Do you think that is because the lingerie ad was one of the first to use the medium, or because the linux and butterfly campaigns didn't use their placement on the sidewalks to good effect?

Ah, you've made your take clear in the "peace love and linux" link above. Silly me. ;)

Neither Linux nor Butterflies had anything to do with streets and sidewalks. Lets say a vital piece of a computer is called - oh I know , a "bus" ;) , and then we advertise Linux on a real Bus.. Aren't we being just a tad more clever then?

aye, like I paraphrased from some ad-smartass above, advertising becomes information when in context. The love peace and Linux was probably spraypainted on sidewalks as to be "edgy" and punk/street artist like, as if they were announcing a revolution. It failed.

Right. To remind myself that in ads, context is everything, I keep on my wall a cover from a book that reprinted two of Horatio Alger's novellas in one edition. The cover announces both titles, apparently unaware of their effect on each other:

RAGGED DICK AND
STRUGGLING UPWARD

There's a Viagra ad before Viagra's time.

That is pretty funny.....

Ads don't HAVE to creep to be effective. And they aren't effective just because they creep. Bad advertising in new spaces is still bad advertising.

Anything "new" is mistakingly deemed more effective by those who failed to learn the basics. In the end, the idea is what counts - you won't be selling more freezers to Eskimos by making colorful snow angels.

I thought Ad Age's Ad Creep was that hack with the beard.

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