Sunday, March 17, 2013

The 'O' Word

Last week, Domino's walked into a social media shit-storm, when a week-long teaser campaign for a “game changing” announcement proved to be nothing more than a new range of square pizzas with premium toppings.

To be honest I think it's a bit of a non-story. What's the news - the public finding an ad campaign to be patronising rubbish? Big deal. They've been thinking this kind of campaign is patronising rubbish for years. The only thing that's changed is that people now have a way of telling the company so, on their facebook page:

But what I do find interesting, and a clue as to what caused the debacle, is an earlier set of comments... these appeared on Campaign Brief when Domino's announced they had hired a new ad agency:

And it should be noted that before hiring this particular agency, Domino's did their advertising in-house for a period.

I'm not a fan of clients pushing their agencies around so much, they're effectively using them as a production studio.

The same kind of problems arise when people hire a real estate agent, or a lawyer, and then ignore their advice. It surely stems from a desire for control.

But if you over-control your advisers, you lose something very important... something that may be the most important benefit to be gained from hiring any external professional.



Anonymous said...

Funny. I think a square pizza (non-party size) is a bit of a game changer. You get four extra corners of pizza in the box.

Christian GP said...

Surely the client takes the risk, as they do when they ignore an agent's or lawyers' advice and they are entitled to. An agent's or lawyer's role is to partner with that business and help them understand the risks (and the value). If they fail in this Client Management they may be ignored or sidelined but its surely a little short-sighted to say this is "an undesirable practice" when in fact it could be a measure of the advertising agency's success (just as much as a failure f the brief or of the vision of the creative director in house or externally)... In this case a face flattening was had by all...

Anonymous said...

Ultimately, all marketers get the advertising they deserve.

Scamp said...

Hi Christian. Yes, I suppose it is a failure of the agency too. But they can't MAKE the client take their advice. As you point out, the client is entitled to ignore it. And as I point out, doing so has its dangers.

dom said...

"Game changer" has quickly become one of those terms that is so overused, and wrongly used, that it is now the worst kind of cliche - the kind you can't trust.

And some of the changes to the pizza game have been horrific of late - notably Pizza Hut's hot-dog-stuffed crust. I like pizza as it is. It doesn't need whistles and bells.

Anonymous said...

Like when creatives push the director around.
Fucking clients.