Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Looking for a "Creative" advertising agency

Has anyone, beside myself, asked why do some advertising agencies (and design firms) use the words "Creative Advertising" in their name? (e.g. XYZ Creative Advertising.) It doesn't seem very creative at all. Whether it's a print design or a radio campaign, an agency's job is to provide "creative" services. I'm certain that advertisers (no matter what their budget) do not go out, purposefully, looking for mundane advertising. 

So why do some advertising agencies use "Creative Advertising" in their name? There are two simple answers to this: 1) the agency just wasn’t very creative when choosing a name (not something an advertiser wants to hear) or 2) because it's a marketing strategy.

I’ll do everyone a favor and not even share my thoughts about answer 1! (You’re welcome.)

Now, how is "Creative Advertising" a marketing strategy? That's because it deals with "value." It doesn't have anything to do with being "creative."

Clients that work with large advertising agencies in cities like New York or L.A., are acutely aware that they are paying top dollar for creative services. So those agencies have no need to use the words "Creative Advertising" in their name. Lower-middle class clients want to make sure that they will be getting a good value for their advertising dollars, and so they may be more skeptical of any agency or design firm. It is in this situation that the client needs to be assured that they will hire the best agency that makes the most creative work, while staying on budget. If the advertisers do not know where to start looking for a credible advertising agency, looking for a glowing beacon like "Creative Advertising" would seem like the best place to start. Seeing those two words accompanying an agency's name, literally assures the potential client that the agency does indeed produce "creative" work, and is not just a media buyer.

Advertising agencies, design firms and freelance designers need to see themselves as their potential customers see them. They need to be aware of the market they are in, and market themselves accordingly. This may or may not mean adding "Creative Advertising" to your company's name, but there is, in deed, a method to this madness.

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