Why the Verbiage Doesn’t Flow
By: Clara Jacob, Paulsen Marketing
By Clara Jacob
Recently I’ve met about a dozen people who work in banks, credit card companies and insurance companies.
When they find out I’m in advertising, they say something like, “Oh, that sounds fun. You must be really creative. I could never do that.”
I think to myself, “Yeah, it’s fun, but it’s not like I’m Steven Spielberg or something. Creativity is the easy part. You COULD do that. It’s the rest that’s hard.”
Of course I don’t say that. I just smile and bask in the glow of my superpowers.
I’m pretty sure everyone in SDAF has had these conversations.
Oddly, however, the very people who profess ignorance and claim they aren’t creative transform themselves immediately (speaking of superpowers) upon becoming clients. Suddenly, they’re the biggest advertising experts on the planet. Their qualifications consist of having watched TV all their lives.
You’ve had those conversations, too. “Make the logo bigger,” or my personal favorite, “the verbiage doesn’t flow.”
And instantly we are transformed from Steven Spielbergs into scullery maids.
Not surprisingly, I’ve thought a lot about this.
- Everyone is creative. Or was. Look at children.
- Folks who have had the creativity squeezed, numbed, footnoted or chased out of them are a little sad about that.
- When those folks become clients, they want to be part of the creativity, so they start micromanaging to feel in control.
- What clients don’t realize is that creativity is just the part of the iceberg above water.
- The rest of the iceberg consists of technical knowledge, experience, professional skills and many hours of hard work underwater in cold, shark-infested oceans.
What if we included clients in the creative process a little more? I realize this suggestion is akin to blasphemy in some quarters, where ideas are hoarded and protected like kryptonite. But just think about it.
Clients would be delighted to have the opportunity to be creative. We’d achieve buy-in. And clients would realize that our cold, underwater, rubber-suit work is tough –and that they aren’t necessarily qualified to do it. Which would gain us a little more respect.