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Effective is BIGGER than efficient

by Phil Coverdale 15th November, 2016

Our industry governing body the IPA has just held it’s first Effectiveness Week. A series of events bringing together the client, creative, media and research communities to share latest thinking, insight, best practice and debate. Central to the week was a two day conference held at BAFTA.

Highlights included:

So amidst this tsunami of insight and opinion what was my key outtake? The North Star thought that I’d use to guide my and Cravens thinking on effectiveness? Effective is much, much BIGGER than being efficient.

Micro-targeting, personalised ad units, econometrically modelled bi weekly optimised channel ROI, AI driven creative.
“Forget your five fancy named customer segments… you now should target in segments of one!” came the cry from the AI acolytes.

At times it felt like Efficiency Week. Marketing getting more tailored, targeted, in the moment and… well… small. But then we heard inspirational Tanya Joseph from Sport England. A big problem for a big target group. Women engage in sport in far fewer numbers than men.

A big universal insight, ‘fear of judgement’ was the barrier to participation. And a big idea in ‘THIS GIRL CAN’ that drove huge response in participation.

Marketing is most effective when it is driven by big business transforming goals. When there is a big insight based strategy that aligns the boardroom, customer experience and comms. Big long-term coherence wins over short-term tactics.

And whisper it, big old-fashioned TV advertising still delivers more cost effective ROI than any other channel.

Of course efficiency is vital but it is an ingredient of effectiveness. Which is a much, much bigger thing.