So says this week’s Fortune Magazine in an article titled “Advertising’s Revenge of the Nerds”.
It discusses how the data revolution has finally come to advertising and changed things forever. Announcing a “quantacracy” in the industry, the author sets up a contrast between The Doublethink’s very own Dimitri and Richard Kirshenbaum of Kirshenbaum Bond + Partners. Quant versus creative. Old versus new. Art versus science.
Of course, the truth is more complex, as Kirshenbaum says. His agency employs analysts, like most others today.
Beneath the drama, you can see the stories of a number of different agencies trying to figure out how to reconcile creativity and analytics.
The threat that all advertising will become the same, voiced by a creative from Weiden seems to me to be unfounded. The point of micro targeting is that messages will be (at least slightly) different.
BMW found what is likely to be a more profound hurdle: using traditional methods, it was simply too expensive to version different ads for the 7 Series and the 3 Series to run to different targets in a Visible World experiment. Mundane though they are, production costs are perhaps the biggest obstacle to truly addressable advertising in the foreseeable future
However, digitization is producing revolution here too. It’s radically lowering costs in w way that is making it possible to develop many different versions of an ad, run them in real time and optimize on the go.
In the end, this combination may be a bigger threat to the status quo than the “tall, lean Belgian”.