How do we measure the success of a creative advertising campaign? Is it through the millions of views a video gets in 24 hours? A jingle or slogan that makes lasting impressions, maybe? Massive jump in sales?
There are several metrics for an effective campaign, but the process of hitting a home run is not child’s play. It needs overflowing creative juices, consistency, experimentation, and an understanding of both a brand and its market. And not all great tactics and ideas necessarily equate to success. If the strategy used by vendors at Ben Thanh Market is an attempt at “traditional advertising,” pulling potential customers’ arms — quite harshly — doesn’t always work.
And there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to advertising. A copy that made designer clothing viral will most definitely not work for a campaign for a mass-market soda drink. Each product and industry requires different strategies based on unique characteristics, consumer behaviors, and competitive landscape.
But there are elements to advertising that have ubiquitous influence across industries. The absence of these may render the campaign ineffective — or worse, a brand backlash.
Trung Nguyen, the founder of Advertising Vietnam, spills the secrets of a successful advertising campaign. Launched in 2016, Advertising Vietnam is a news site for agency employees to get their industry news fix. It offers an in-depth analysis of the domestic and international advertising industry and serves as an ideas hub.
Master the art of storytelling
Effective advertising and communication involve creating narratives that engage and connect with the audience. Whatever industry you work in, storytelling plays an important role when creating ideas and strategies.
This is definitely why brand campaigns that highlight meaningful stories about families, victories, romance, and friendships are well loved. These emotional narratives connect the brand to its intended audiences, evoking feelings that leave lasting impressions.
Advertisements that feature real people with real stories are effective in creating a connection with the audience and establishing sincerity and authenticity for the brand.
Use words that work
Part of mastering the art of storytelling is knowing what words to use and how to use them. Choosing words and phrases that are clear, concise, and relevant to the message a brand wants to convey ensures that the audience quickly understands the message. Even a word misplaced in a campaign can trigger misinterpretation or even offense.
It’s important to note that identifying words and phrases that work stems from understanding the audience and tailoring the language and tone to resonate with them. For example, an ad campaign for a luxury brand should convey sophistication and exclusivity. Youth-oriented campaigns, meanwhile, need fun and playful slang to appeal to the young.
Adapt or be obsolete
The advertising industry is constantly evolving, working with many clients from different sectors/categories, so the advertising firm must keep an eye on every trend and new technology to suggest the right solution for their client.
While physical billboards or print ads are still very popular, the rise of digital advertising through social media platforms has made a massive shift in the advertising industry — both from the perspective of the brands and the consumers.
Don’t have a Facebook page? You’re missing out on the opportunity to connect with 20 million Vietnamese daily app users. The emergence of video sharing platform TikTok is also taking the advertising industry by storm, with thousands of brands trying to leverage the app to create a whole new brand experience for their target consumers.
If you are not ready to adapt to the change, you will lose your competitive edge.
Take pressure as fuel
Advertising jobs are not easy — fun, yes, but definitely not a walk in the park. This industry entails dealing with clients and brands that may be overdemanding or have confusing messages that are hard to put into a creative campaign.
But it’s the challenges and the pressure of this job that make success more rewarding in the end. After sleepless nights, a thousand revisions, and endless meetings, the moment an ad campaign goes out and is well-received by the audience (or hits a million views in 24 hours), triumph tastes sweeter.
Taking the pressure as fuel to ignite passion and juice out creativity can help one grow and develop. After all, crafting compelling ad campaigns doesn’t happen in a wink; it’s a trial and error process before one can finally strike marketing gold.
When in doubt, collaborate it out
Collaboration and teamwork are essential in every industry, especially in advertising. Successful brand campaigns often result from innovative ideas and perspectives from diverse teams working together. When team members from different backgrounds, skill sets, and perspectives collaborate, they can bring a range of creative solutions to the table that may have yet to be possible with a more homogeneous team.
Collaboration can also help overcome obstacles or roadblocks during the creative process. By pooling resources and ideas, team members can find innovative solutions to problems and push past creative blocks.