Whilst the news wires are abuzz today with talk of his big European speech we’re more interested in David Cameron’s positive affirmation of offline advertising. In an increasingly digital world, it is nice to see that our Prime Minister is busy inadvertently proving that there are other forms of advertising that can work as well as digital.
Earlier this month Cameron was asked about the relationship between the Tories and Liberal Democrats and asked to comment on the coalition, when he said that they came together to tackle the problems that face the UK at the moment; “So, to me it’s not a marriage it is a Ronseal deal – it does what it says on the tin” he said.
We’re pretty certain that this comment would have warmed hearts with former employees at the now-defunct HHCL, the agency that created this slogan for Ronseal back in 1994, and Ronseal themselves. There can be no better affirmation of your product or service than when it enters popular culture and is used in a speech by the Prime Minister of the day.
But this isn’t the first time David Cameron has done this; he was famously castigated by opposition MP’s last April for his ‘calm down dear’ comment aimed at Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury Angela Eagle on the opposition benches. Of course ‘calm down dear’ was famously uttered by the late Michael Winner in adverts for insurance firm Esure in 2002.
So why is this important? It is because we find ourselves today gripped in a digital storm in which many of the traditional advertising methodologies are being ignored in favour of digital. There is an inexorable rise in online digital advertising revenues, and a corresponding decline in offline, but in so doing we are moving away from environments where the traditional advertising values of a headline, sub-headline, body content, visual and calls to action are being replaced by text ads of four lines, no more than 26 characters for a headline and 35 per line after that. It’s like asking your advertising agency to come up with a strategic advertising campaign that will fit in a tweet. They can probably do it but would you be happy with the results?
David’s use of these offline slogans is proof if proof were needed that the old advertising methods actually work. After all, how many PPC ads have entered the advertising mainstream and are considered part of the culture? And for those advocates of PPC who believe that this is truly the way we should all go, all we would ask is that you ‘Think Different’.