Advertising: The Sharp End of Creative Writing
And my attempts at the genre.
My fans (both of them) have known for a long time, that I consider myself something of a wordsmith. Even the present Mrs. Stanley begrudgingly accepts I have some (albeit, not much) talent. To date, I've written and published six full length novels, a novella, two novelettes and a short story. People think it's hard to write a novel, but the fact is - it isn't! It might be hard to write a GOOD one (I'll confirm my thoughts on this once I've actually succeeded at that), but actually writing a novel is a doddle. You just make stuff up until you've written a satisfactory conclusion, then you draw a line under it - finished. The real skill is in writing a short story. A good short story is an interesting slice of a longer story. It should feel like jumping on and off a bus. Trying to cram a novel-sized idea into a short story rarely works well.
Take this philosophy to the nth degree, and you get to advertising. People have literally zero attention span these days - and that's for stuff they WANT to read. How do you grab people's attention and get them thinking, in a split-second... When they don't even want to read what you're telling them? That, is the skill in good advertising. They have to be laser-focused, sharp, and straight to the point. A good advert grabs a man's attention, slaps him in the face, then pushes him aside and shouts 'NEXT!' A good avert has to be creative, provocative, emotive and lots of other words that end in 'ive'.
I've never actually worked in advertising. It's a creative industry though, so it's something which might suit me. To that end I decided have a go and knock out a few adverts for cars and car brands. You'll have to let me know what you think of them!
#1 Porsche 911
My first proper attempt at an ad.
Now this was easy. I like the Porsche 911 and I think I have I have an idea for the sort of drivel advertising companies churn out to make us feel all 'gooey' inside. I was actually pretty pleased with this one.
#2 VW Group
My next attempt.
VW Group, I thought was a bit tougher. I kind of hate Skodas for being cheap dross that people buy because they like VW but don't want to pay retail price and don't care about the badge. I also kind of think people who are willing to spend the GDP of a small country on an automotive objet d'art which they'll hardly ever drive are a bit silly. So here I kind of went for the 'Buy a Skoda, because they're cheap but they're sort of like a Bugatti really' theme, thinking that there'll always be a few rich fools willing to splash 2 million on a toy, but the bulk of the businesses profits come from the everyday stuff so... Does that make sense?
#3 Ford Mustang
My attempt at a Mustang ad
I was quite torn with this one. I LIKE the Mustang, but I also have to acknowledge that I find the cars a bit silly. They're huge, but have no space inside and are sort of a muscle car, but are sort of too good? Like, when I think muscle car - I think leaf-spring suspension and welded diff sort of shenanigans? I think the rest of the world was really excited when the Mustang was announced to be going global, so I really tried to capitalize on that here. As it's such a generally silly car though, I thought the people who it will most appeal to are die-hard Americaphiles, hence the tone.
My shot at a mini ad.
Now I like the Mini. I particularly liked the old one, even though it was objectively awful. It was fun to drive! However, it does grate when people talk about it with TOO rose-tinted glasses. I think there's a case for honesty in advertising. Everybody knows the modern Mini is actually about as British as Rammstein performing a concert in Berlin to honour Angela Merkel. It doesn't matter how many Union Jack flags you slap on a Blitzkrieg era, Tiger Tank - it's still German! The same is true of the Mini! So let's not be shy about that fact and try to sweep it under the carpet! Let's celebrate it and point out the good points of it being a German Engineered product.
My attempt at a Lamborghini ad
This was an interesting one. My instinct was to go for an advert extolling the advantages of going for a Urus over an Audi Q8 RS, essentially, that - YES, the Urus is the same car but a LOT more expensive, but that it looks nicer and makes you a less boring person. The thing is though - Lamborghini can't make the Urus fast enough. They don't need to advertise it! With this ad, I wanted to acknowledge that most Lamborghinis don't get driven much and the real reason people tend to want them is to compensate for a small penis and show off how rich they are. If you won the lottery and you wanted to make people sick with envy, the first thing you'd buy is a Lamborghini. However, you'd never drive it anywhere as it's completely impractical, difficult to drive and you'd be terrified of leaving it on a public car park unattended. It is a car for WANTING and again, I aimed for honesty with this ad and sort of celebrated the status of the Lamborghini as a pure object of desire.
There you have it! My first attempt at a few honest, but appealing adverts to draw people into the brands! Do you think I hit the nail on the head? Do I have a career in advertising?
showing a lack of respect for people or things that are generally taken serious
Stories and images of supercar crashes, in honour of veteran crasher Hammond