Lord Saatchi at the graveside of advertising at Cannes
LONDON - Lord Maurice Saatchi, founder of M&C Saatchi, will speak today about the death of advertising, the importance of simplicity and the rise of the new digital age for marketing at the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival.
In a report of the speech on the Financial Times' website, Saatchi says "sometimes I feel as though I am standing at the graveside of a well-loved friend called advertising".
Saatchi goes on to say that advertising was cut down in its prime at the age of 50 and that while holding companies used to boast about their share of the market, they now boast of how much of their business is not advertising, highlighting the move to digital, market research and other marketing service disciplines.
He blames this on sociology -- the family not watching television together -- and technology -- too many laptops, iPods and mobile phones -- while proposing a "diagnosis" which is a question of "psychology".
The major theme of his speech is the single word and how successful brands can be defined by them. For the ultimate example he references the Bible: "In the beginning was the Word, and the word was God", to illustrate the way that a single "one word" can be a "brand's guide, protector, defender and saviour", which is part of M&C Saatchi's "one word equity" discipline.
The "one word equity" discipline is flagged in The Times today with a double-page M&C Saatchi ad showing a picture of a dictionary with the words "there are 750,000 words in the English language but you only need" with the word "one" on an almost blank facing page above the tagline "The strongest brands are build on one word".
The campaign is expanded upon at the onewordequity.com website, which says that simple messages can be broken down by the brain much more easily.
One word is all that is needed and the strongest brands are the simplest, which backs up Saatchi's "one word equity" theory.
Examples of modern day equivalents of this are described by Saatchi as the word "search", which he says is now owned by Google. He also says that the word "favourite" was owned by British Airways. M&C famously lost the £60m BA account to Barle Bogle Hegarty in October.
He cites another example saying that Sony used to own the word "innovation", but this word, he says, has probably now been taken by Apple.
"The challenge is to find the word, the word that guides everywhere. And once it is found, never to forsake it. How do you find that word? There are 750,000 words in the English language. How do you know which is the right one? It is difficult," Saatchi says.
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