50 years later, Mad Men and Women are, once again, changing the way we interact with brands. Ads in the 1960’s leveraged channels such as television and magazine to tell the brand’s story. Beautiful art and clever copy backed by powerful insight made a personal appeal to your lifestyle and not just your pocketbook. At the time, it was a revolution towards becoming personally acquainted with your consumer. But, there were limits to the relationship brands could enjoy via the one-way street of traditional media.
Today’s revolution is a much more comprehensive transformation. We’ve been pouring the foundations for the change since the early 2000’s with the emergence of forums, social media and the visual, open-source Internet. Yesterday’s sleek print ad or brilliant billboard is now broadcast daily across social media. One-way streets have been demolished to make way for communication superhighways, where the consumer is put at the same level as the brand. The clever copy once found in a David Ogilvy magazine ad has been replaced with concisely constructed 140-character headlines. The painstakingly painted art you may have seen in a DDB ad has been replaced with a nonsensical YouTube video. You may think that this is a step backward. But, it’s just the opposite.
“The message” is now called “the conversation” and consumers are being drawn closer and closer into the warm embrace of their favorite brands. This new, cyber relationship allows brands to grow past the static personality once found exclusively on billboards and ad nauseam television commercials. Social and digital media makes two-way brand interaction as instant and meaningful as a face-to-face conversation. Today, advertising is an organic creature and this has flipped the traditional ad strategy on its head.
With bite-size content leading the way in social media, brands must deliver a big punch in tiny package. This has raised the bar on the importance of visually enticing content. The popularity of highly visual media like Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube have forced brands to fit their message into succinct, shareable images and videos. It’s insightful advertising like the world has never seen before and it’s palced us at the epicenter for a full-blown media renaissance.