Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Tuesday Tip No.46 - The Hidden Flaw


Someone once said that "the problem with a hidden flaw is it never remains hidden."

Wise words.

Very often, when you're writing an ad, you come up with something great, that you love... but you know in your heart of hearts there's one tiny thing wrong with it.

Your partner likes it. Your CD likes it. So you start thinking that maybe the planner, the account team, the client and the director will like it too, that none of them will spot the hidden flaw.

But they will. Maybe they won't say anything because, hey, they all need an ad too. But by the time it gets to consumers, and to awards juries, that hidden flaw will be as visible as a spot on a nose.

Maybe it's just a little bit too close to something one of the brand's competitors has done. Maybe it's an endline or set of words that works perfectly on two levels, but there's just this extra little meaning it can also have, that you don't want, which keeps creeping in to the communication.

Whatever it is, you know what it is. And you're best off bringing it out into the open.

And yes, I know today's Wednesday.


Previous Tips:

How To Write Copy; Be Funny All The Way Through; How To Do Virals; How To Get A Pay Rise; Be Wary Of Punding; Challenge The Brief; Tell The Truth; Playing To Lose; How To Write Headlines; How To Do Direct; How To Do Radio; How To Do Press; How To Do TV; How To Do Digital; How To Do Posters; Look At Weird Shit; Presenting To The Client; Presenting To The Team; Presenting To The Creative Director; How To Deal With Rejection; Look Creative; Don't Be Afraid To Ask; Your Idea Has To Be 120%; Read Iain's Tips; Don't Behave; How To Discuss Ideas; Read Hugh's Tips; How To Get A Job In Advertising Part IV - How To Turn A Placement Into A Job; How To Get A Job In Advertising Part III - How To Approach Agencies (re-print of Tip No. 7); How To Get A Job In Advertising Part II - How To Put A Book Together; How To Get A Job In Advertising Part I - FAQ; Make Friends With Traffic; Get Reference; Don't Stop Too Soon; Be Very; Breaking Up; Working Well With Your Partner; Finding The Right Partner; How To Approach Agencies; Never-Seen-Before Footage; Dicketts' Finger; Two Blokes In The Pub; Play Family Fortunes; Should You Take A Bad Job?; Don't Overpolish

20 comments:

kate moss said...

I've got a hidden...

Oh, forget it. My heart's just not in it today.

Pete's in prison. I'm on holiday with my daughter, Lulu, or whatever her name is, and I seem to have got myself engaged to some ugly prick when I secretly just want to do his female bandmate.

Carry on with your pedantic advertising bullshit.

I'm going to bed.

anonymouse said...

These are on sale now.
Enjoy, Scamp. You too, Kate.

http://img107.imagevenue.com/img.php?image=42372_juanimator_123_985lo.jpg

(Thanks, studio fellas)

Anonymous said...

Image: Baby's bottom
Product: Skin lotion for babies.
Headline: For peaches, just add cream.
Ended up being described by client as 'the paedo concept.'

Anonymous said...

'Slam in the Lamb' for British Meat. The client name alone is enough.

Anonymous said...

I cursed that 'Pick Up a Penguin' endline everyday from jail after I was charged with meeting a small flightless arctic bird in a bar and taking her back to mine for a spot of slap and tickle.

Anonymous said...

yes very true, scampi.
and the flip side of it is that a good idea is all the sweeter when you know, deep down, that there are no flaws in it, whichever way you look at it.
makes me also think that it's even more remarkable that the flaws in Cadbury's Trucks weren't spotted until after it hit the screens...

Anonymous said...

Don't you dare criticise Juan on here. Scamp steals his pants off his clothes line.

Anonymous said...

originals never fit, anyone?

Anonymous said...

Then there's bullshitting through the press release to make everyone think your ad is technomalogically fantastic.

http://www.campaignbrief.com/2008/04/3d-ad-for-radio-via-mc-saatchi.html

But evidently you get caught out eventually.

shane warne is an arsehole said...

Anon 12.23, no one gives a shit about radio. No one gives a shit about Australia. The combination of the two is pretty boring.

And we don't even know what you're talking about.

The Golden oracle of truth said...

'The problem with a hidden flaw is that it never stays hidden'? That's a big beef-curtain of an aphorism.

If a hidden flaw is revealed then the phrase it always proven right. How do we know if there are any unrevealed hidden flaws around? We can't. Even a perfect ad like Guinness Surfer might have a flaw we find in 50 years' time.

If you know in your heart of hearts there's something wrong then the flaw's not very hidden, is it?

It's like 'you always find something in the last place you looked'. Well of course you do. Who the fuck carries on looking for things they've already found?

Let me clarify for Scamp: don't try to get away with an ad you know is fucked. You'll get called on it eventually. End of post. No need for a picture of a broken chain, either.

Anonymous said...

fock me, i went grey reading that bore-fest

Anonymous said...

Oooooooooooo.
Handbags for the Oracle.

Anonymous said...

New Audi ad is shit.

It's another 'let's make the car out of something' wankathon. In this case the engine is a bunch of gymnasts.

It's that gay.

Anonymous said...

Scamp. Thoughts on the new Audi ad?

Scamp: 'it's er...very...visual.'

Anonymous said...

anon 12.25.

You got stuck at the word aphorism and now your brain hurts.

Anonymous said...

anon 1.13
pretty much, yeah

Anonymous said...

here's a tip. make sure your idea has some LIFE to it. then you don't have to worry so much about flaws.

waiting for the decree nisi said...

Here's another tip: don't ever have a threesome with your wife and another guy whose penis is bigger than yours.

Anonymous said...

Have you seen the latest Tesco Ad from the Red Brick Shithouse? Another expensive load of crap that you never see on TV. What's going on there, and why do decent directors want to take these pieces of wank on? Do the budgets include a hummer from Cameron Diaz?