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The100: Internal language, the impossible job and SpongeBob

“Let your gut do what it was designed to do”

There was some hullabaloo last week after Campaign Magazine anointed Amazon’s Christmas ad Turkey of the Week. Meanwhile, the good folk at System 1 said it was one of the most effective of all time.

Cue the semantic trench warfare. Take it away, Lieutenant General Ritson:

“Campaign journos are making a call based on personal taste. Tindall [System 1] is basing his on data […] But the bigger lesson is market orientation. You are not the consumer. Start from that point in marketing and you always end up in a better place. Use data to understand the market and let your gut do what it was designed to do; process sh*t.”

Mrs Mean, Treatment Deniers and Natural Fantasists

The marvellous Helen Edwards has warned that brands’ internal language can dehumanise customers and even lack respect.

“It’s been a while since I’ve heard the once-common term ‘punters’ to describe the people who buy our goods and services, but the descriptors we assign to consumer cohorts in our segmentation studies are often scarcely more respectful […] ‘Mrs Mean’, to describe the mum who doesn’t put much variety on the family breakfast table; ‘treatment deniers’ to delineate people who choose not to take conventional medicines; ‘natural fantasists’ for those who believe beauty can be achieved without scientific ingredients.”

The impossible job?

In advertising, planners inform creative with customer research. That sounds a lot like insights to me, just with a fancy name. And a recent survey by the Account Planning Group (APG) found that there are now 24 skills required to be a planner. 

Michael Lee, Chair of the Account Planning Group, spoke about this some more and explained how planners now have to be T-shaped:

“In the past we’ve talked about planners needing to be T-shaped, so have that deep knowledge in a particular area […] and to have a sufficient knowledge of other capabilities and skill sets. Enough to be able to understand what they are and to work with other people. And what I’d say is that the thickness of that horizontal line in terms of what you need to know and how you need to work and collaborate well with specialists, whether they’re your colleagues, whether they’re in other agencies, for example, or in house, I think that’s got to get thicker. You need to know more. I used to say 10% is enough. Just know 10%. But I think it’s more like 20% now.”

You talking to me?

I like to think there’s a case for us stating that we’re in the business of film making here at Watch Me Think. And to say so would certainly get a far better reaction in the pub than “qualitative, full-service, self moderated video ethnography”. 

So, as a filmmaker, I was particularly interested in this video on how Martin Scorsese directs a movie. Here are his 5 top tips: 

  • Use your roots
  • Characters on the edge
  • Build authentic worlds
  • Music in mind
  • Direct the edit

Zoom out

Our World in Data produced a timeline of technology. Their long term perspective shows just how unusually fast technological change has been in our lifetime.

“What I take away from this history is that I will likely see technologies in my lifetime that appear unimaginable to me today.”

And finally…

Google has released an update to Maps, including Immersive View (and those slight colour changes that you may have already noticed). It’s good. Very good in fact. 

Seinfeld fans – I’ve got a nifty edit for you from Bell Brothers. It’s Elaine dancing in multiple film / tv / music videos. How many can you name? I got to 9.

And a disturbing (albeit old) video of the SpongeBob voice actors acting out a scene in real life It took me a few minutes to get over this.