You only have to go back to 2011 and the IPA’s findings from The Gunn Report and the IPA Databank to know that there is “a direct correlation between strong advertising creativity and business success, and that high levels of creativity make advertising campaigns some 12 times more efficient at increasing a brand’s market share.”
Fast forward to 2016 and the IPA released disturbing evidence that the success of creativity had halved over a period of just four years. Factors found to be responsible were a shift to short-termism, and lower campaign budgets leading to lower levels of excess share of voice or ESOV (share of voice minus share of market).
Yet, I feel something else has changed. As a new breed of digital marketer emerges – a marketer focused on text ads, SEO, open rates and click through rates – what we are seeing is less value placed on a creative idea and too much emphasis placed on the ‘more easily measurable’ aspects of modern marketing. We are witnessing the commoditisation of creativity, and sadly it is undermining effectiveness.
In addition, procurement departments are squeezing agency margins, pushing to pay agencies for very little, if any, thinking time while expecting to get the same results. What doesn’t seem to be understood is that creativity takes time – all the ideas (good and bad), need to be put on the table, explored and while some are discarded the great ideas bubble to the surface and are then developed. Strategists too need time to explore and think and be curious.
Creativity has lost its worth
There was a time when ideas were pitched with a price tag attached, much like a piece of art. Now, however, it seems great ideas are not valued and price takes priority. Ultimately you get what you pay for.
All of us at Page & Page work in this industry because we want to do extraordinary things for extraordinary people. We want to put a feather in the cap of our clients by coming up with ideas that exceed KPIs, meet objectives, impact business, and win awards. Creativity is what gets us out of bed in the morning and what fuels us during our day. In a time where it is easy for budgets to get chewed up by the multitude of customer segments and channels we need to cater for, I suggest that we all take a minute to think about the value of creativity because, at the end of the day, the link between creativity and effectiveness will always exist. Those who invest in creativity and aim for the extraordinary will come out on top.
If you see the value in creative thinking and need help with a big idea, why not contact us or leave your details below?