The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

When You Run Out Of Reasons To Believe …

Reasons To Believe, or RTB for short.

Of course they’re super important, but a few years ago, I realized that clients felt they were important for different reasons than agencies.

For us, it’s about proof. Something tangible we can use to help build our ideas off.

Of course it’s best when it’s something unique, but as long as it’s true, that will do.

But for clients, it’s different.

Sure, they know it helps sell their product to their audience, but it’s also important to them for self-validation reasons.

Imagine you’d spent 3 years of your life making Post-It notes slightly more sticky. You’d want to feel that was worth it wouldn’t you … so when an agency comes back with an idea that doesn’t focus on the importance of ‘stickiness’, you’d feel all your hard work was wasted. So you’d push back.

And back.

And back again.

And even though it leads to fucking awful advertising, you’d be happy because for you, this isn’t about selling the product, it’s about you feeling less shit that a proportion of your life was spent on making a piece of paper slightly more sticky.

I experienced this quite recently – when I was in China.

For weeks we had issues with a client on a particular idea before we discovered he was the person behind the design of a small element of the brand and he felt we were ignoring it … which translated to him feeling we were ignoring him.

Ego can be a great thing.

It can give you the impetus to push you forward. Try new things. Explore new standards.

It can also fuck you up.

Make you lose sight of the bigger picture. Or any picture for that matter.

Which is probably what happened to the guys who had to do the packaging for the brown packing tape.

And why I love the absolutely correct comment from Mike Jennings [courtesy of John Dodds]

If that wasn’t enough, here’s something else to blow your mind.

I am on holiday on Monday for 2 days.

A work holiday and a national holiday.

Bet you thought my days of free holiday blagging were over, didn’t you.

Well you thought wrong, because it is July 4th … a day I will soon grow to love.

And with that, I’ll see you Wednesday y’all.

21 Comments so far
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how fucking handy that you write about packing tape because whenever some fucking client or planner patronised me with an rtb, id want to cover their fucking mouth and nose with it.

Comment by andy@cynic

Not the eyes too? Missed opportunity.

Comment by DH

and bullet points are a sign of the fucking lazy and soulless. fact.

Comment by andy@cynic

A post about packaging tape packaging. A new Low?

Comment by DH

Are you kidding? He’s gone much lower than this.

Comment by Billy Whizz

Yes Dave, I’ve gone way, way lower.

Comment by Rob

Of course you get an extra day off from the rest of America. Why did I think normal rules would apply to you?

Comment by DH

the fucker has so many holidays i didnt even see that. fuck me, whats campbell got on his new overlords to start getting additional benefits already? where being a manipulative freeloading bastard is concerned, campbell is fucking peerless.

Comment by andy@cynic

More manipulative than the mafia.

Comment by DH

His new employers have decided they need a rest from him.

Comment by John

I’m surprised it took so long.

Comment by Bazza

Why do they make a point that the brown packing tape is brown? Did management insist they have a 4 point criteria?

Comment by Bazza

Sounds like the packing tape management were at Apple before.

Comment by Pete

Says the man who works for a holding company. #alphabetsoup

Comment by Bazza

I like this IT aggression.

And yes, I did just call both of your companies IT.

Comment by Rob

I like your style Baz.

Comment by DH

I could make an argument for this being an example of a rational argument producing an emotional response (namely that it’s just tape, that hyping it would simply offend the intelligence of the buyer and that being so obvious is wry, knowing and inclusive) but I don’t work in advertising so I won’t.

Comment by John

Excellent point John. I believe that is how Rob sold the 1990’s Ronseal “does what it says on the tin” campaign.

Comment by George

Solver Paints used to display a deep understanding of the Australian male psyche on their packaging. Printed around the lid was the phrase” “When all else fails, read the instructions.”

Comment by Ian Gee

Hope you are excited for the best day of your life tomorrow. USA USA USA USA USA USA USA USA USA USA USA USA

Comment by Billy Whizz

Story of his life, though he’ll probbaly regret his decision to fly a Chinese flag.

Comment by John

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