Mel Sokotch

The importance of the order in which your ad appears

Let's say you're running a national TV campaign. That likely means you've got a schedule on cable TV. And that means every hour your commercial airs, it's got lots company, maybe 40 other commercials.  

No, that's not a typo. 


DVR, TIVO, and the facts about fast forwarding

Ask anyone not directly involved in the media business about the impact of DVRs on TV commercials, and they'll likely tell you that many commercials no longer get seen because they're skipped past. If this is what you think (and I meet many who think exactly this) then read on, and get the facts: 

Out of the Box vs Tried and True

When the subject of creative exploratory comes up, the typical direction from client to agency is to bring back creative based on original ideas, ideas that will set my brand apart, ideas that are "out of the box."


Rarely does a client demand advertising that's been done before, that's "tried & true," that's formulaic.


Ok, that's the set up...


The problem with market research, and how to mitigate it

One side benefit of a national election (some might say, side effect) is that we get to read new polls almost every day. If you're in marketing, it's a great laboratory to see which "pitch" is working, which is not.  But there's a downside: We're occasionally reminded that research is, well, research. It's not perfect, and it's sometimes confounding.

Can 1/4 second make a difference?

One of the points consistently made here is that in our increasingly cluttered media environment, less is more than it ever was. Here are findings from 3 studies that make the point well:

How to stress test your brand's positioning...

If ROI is the ultimate test of positioning, then "how your customers describe your brand" is the penultimate test...

How positioning informs every decision Southwest Airlines makes...

If a positioning program is going to be effective, it must be applied with ruthless discipline, and by everyone who touches the brand.  Here's a great example from Chip and Dan Heath's terrific book, "Made to Stick":

What baseball can teach advertising

If you haven't seen Moneyball or read the book, here's the synopsis:  In 2002, Billy Beane, manager of the Oakland A's, finds himself with a salary budget of $41 million, lowest in the majors.  The Yankee's budget that year was $125 million. But the A's go on to win 101 games, same as the Yankees, despite being outspent 3 to 1.

Mandarin, Clutter and Positioning

Mandarin: Chinese kids typically learn elementary math faster than American kids. One reason is this: Numbers in Mandarin have fewer syllables than numbers in English. And words with fewer syllables are easier to remember; they require less memory.

Babies, Animals, Beautiful People and Recall Scores

Why do we stop to look at babies, animals, and beautiful people? It has to do with evolutionary psychology.
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