You Cannot be (too) Serious.
As the tennis great John McEnroe once said, You Cannot Be Serious.
For the marketers amongst us, the motivation may be remarkably similar.
Not for robotic baseline play, but for flair and brilliance, perhaps minus the angst.
That’s why most creative people enter the fray, to be memorable and create compelling work that moves people and makes an impact.
But just like tennis back in the 1970s and 80s, was the advertising era more fun and dome with greater flair and risk taking?
While we don’t want to return to the past could we learn from the television advertising of that era and redefine what the modern television commercial should look like?
Have we lost Australian larrikin thinking and the ability to poke fun at ourselves in our television ad production?
Who better than Sue Perry, Director of Brand Development at The Media Hut, to join this episode of Pending Approval with Glenda Wynyard (The Media Precinct) and Jack Geraghty (Resolve).
During her career Sue worked with Mojo, the iconic agency known for its big jingles and advertising smash hits.
Marketing and advertising work better together
“I do have empathy with marketers.
“Often clients want something measurable up front, everyone wants measurability to justify what they’ve done.”
But Perry says there are positive benefits of standing up and being a strong leader who is sceptical of chasing too many metrics.
“People don’t actually shop that way; they think about it (brands) for longer.”
Let’s be funny and clever at the same time.
Perry says the best creative people are guided by the “social currency of the day.”
“So yes things are a bit too serious (at the moment).
“Advertising is often successful when it’s a first, unusual and memorable.
“Recall is what we all want.
“People do like humour.
“They like to like the ad and they like to like you. And they don’t want it to be too serious.”
Perry sees the role of advertising is to take an idea and “be the invitation” and laments the lack of great colloquialisms and one liners like “throw another shrimp on the barbie” made famous by Paul Hogan promoting Australia as a tourist destination.
Have we still got the music in us?
Perry vividly recalls the C’mon Aussie C’mon advertisements to promote Kerry Packer’s World Series Cricket in the 1970s.
She cautions against over analysis in the collective efforts of marketers and advertisers.
“I can watch that ad a million times. I had no interest in cricket at all.
“They just nailed it and I’m sure there wasn’t five research sessions, they understood who they were talking to.”
She still sees hope for the jingle to make a comeback in today’s markets.
Unlikely beginnings can lead to an incredible journey.
Imagine you “fell into” advertising but then worked on some of the most memorable brands.
“I started down a path very similar to advertising, nursing,” Perry quipped.
“Both involve a lot of hand holding,” she laughed.
A chance meeting with someone working in advertising started her journey away from a future in emergency departments before she worked on the L’Oréal account for Mojo where she stayed for more than a decade.
“Those were incredible years.”
Perry cited her later work with Garnier as an example of how a brand can do remarkable things from a standing start by knowing its audience and creative a compelling story.
“Sure, we had the media budget, we had a partnership at the Australian Open tennis.
“But I encourage clients to have activations and connect with the target market.”
Transcript - Pending Approval Ep: 22 No Laughter Lost with Sue Perry
Speaker 1 [00:00:00] May I have your attention, please? This is Pending Approval, advertising from the inside out.
Glenda [00:00:09] Before we get started, we'd like to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land with which we produce this podcast from and pay our respects to their elders, past, present and emerging. This is the Pending Approval podcast advertising from the inside out. I'm your host, Glenda Wynyard. I've spent about a million years in advertising and media, so I figure I might be a bit of an expert on the subject. With me as my new co-host, Jack Geraghty. Now, Jack is what I call a bit of a slashie. I shouldn't say that some men will have a bit of a laugh at that, but he is a bit of a slashie because what he is, he is a person that straddles strategy across both media and creative. And so Jack brings with him a very different and very fresh perspective on the advertising industry and really just gives me a good check, don't you?
Jack [00:01:03] Got to keep it all above board, Glenda, you know, got to keep it all PC.
Glenda [00:01:07] We'll get cancelled if we're not PC, everyone says that to me, you can't have that.
Jack [00:01:12] Well, definitely not on the first episode, that's for sure.
Glenda [00:01:14] Definitely not, now, Jack, we've got some amazing guests lined up for this series, and I'm really, really looking forward to Pending Approval this year, so who and what topic have we got on the agenda today?
Jack [00:01:29] So today we'll be talking about a couple of things that I think are maybe missing in the advertising industry of recent years. And I think it's going to be really right up your alley, GW. The first thing I'm going to be talking about is whatever happened to a good old-fashioned laugh. So we're going to be talking about humour in advertising and also as well as that, we're going to talk about the good old-fashioned days of the advertising jingle. It's not to say that they don't still exist, but I think there are definitely some glory years of that. We have someone joining us today and someone who's really, you know, couldn't have asked for someone better equipped to talk to the famous advertising jingles, especially some of the Australian ones too. So we have dialing in from sunny north Queensland. We have Sue Perry, who is the director of brand development at the Media Hub, welcome, Sue.
Glenda [00:02:10] Hi, Sue, how are you?
Sue [00:02:13] Very good, thank you, Glenda, Jack, it's really nice to meet you and put some perspective on what Glenda and I might be tarnished with, so thank you.
Glenda [00:02:23] Tarnished.
Jack [00:02:25] I don't know about that.
Glenda [00:02:26] The days are so much tamer these days, aren't they, Sue?
Jack [00:02:29] It does seem that way.
Sue [00:02:31] Absolutely.
Glenda [00:02:31] Now, Sue and I once shared an account, did you know that Jack?
Jack [00:02:35] I did, yes, you've told me a couple of stories about what used to happen back in the day.
Glenda [00:02:39] L'Oreal, we worked on them, we were in opposing agencies at the time, and we used to have a bit of fortitude and so built a bit of character. Sue, look, welcome to Pending Approval, I'm so delighted that you could join us. We always start the show by getting to know the guest. And one of the things that I'd love to ask you is to give us a bit of a bio so that our listeners can actually understand and put into perspective your experience.
Sue [00:03:07] Okay, well, it's interesting because I fell into advertising that wasn't my first choice and as it turned out, but I was very fortunate there was Thompson White back in the old days, Gerald Thomson and then there was FCB and FCB, it was kind of a natural transition because True North brought that out and then it became Mojo. And I went to Mojo because of the L'Oreal account. And so probably those 13, 14 years, that merger was incredible. They were really incredible years. And then in 2011 decided to make a shift because that was a time of great change, especially within the industry. It was huge. You know, we had people where you had the individual agencies and people who were working through that. Then suddenly you had about four or five mega agencies that came in and bought them out. We looked at the amazing network of people that we had and the people that we could work with. And we changed our own formula of how we wanted to work. And so that was hence what happened. And I was hired in the beginning and then it became really good because we actually rely on that network of great people, who we can tap into work with, but we don't have those overheads that sit within the agency structure as it stands at the moment, pretty much that sit in the snapshot.
Glenda [00:05:04] It's very interesting, isn't it, Sue, you're making that shift from a multinational into an independent agency and relying on those networks because it gives you access to some fantastic talent.
Sue [00:05:17] Amazing and I think that those people, you know, you get to use the right person for the right job and because you already have the connection with them, there's already a trust.
Jack [00:05:34] I thought it was interesting you said, Sue, that you didn't actually plan on starting out in advertising, which I think is something I hear quite a bit from a number of people in our industry. I mean, for me personally, I didn't even know what a media agency was when I first started out. And then, you know, you kind of build the kind of industry together as you learn more and more about it. But what were you sort of planning on doing if it wasn't advertising or did you sort of start down another path and then kind of find your way over into ad land?
Sue [00:06:00] I kind of did start down another path, which was very similar, really, when you think about it, it was nursing.
Jack [00:06:07] All of parallels there.
Sue [00:06:10] Full on, you know, it's, you know, hand-holding, doing all of that. But I think the thing about it is that what I always think is people mostly in the industry are eclectic in their own way. They kind of find each other. You find that these people who, you know, like yourself when you talk about creativity and things like that, probably things that you didn't put value on before because you didn't really know where it went. So fortuitously, I was asked to go and work at a big film house, which I did, then met a guy who was in advertising and sort of went in through those doors, so there we were.
Jack [00:07:01] Great call.
Sue [00:07:03] You'll never know, as luck would have it.
Jack [00:07:04] Well, I thought we'd sort of move on. And I think, you know, talking about having quite an illustrious career, as you have, Sue, as we sort of just touched on, sort of spanned several agencies and a number of accounts over a number of years. But we wanted to sort of gauge your thoughts on the state of advertising in 2023. And I thought to use as a bit of a yardstick for some of the work that we're looking at out there now, sort of using some of the winners from Cannes 2022 as sort of a reference point for, I guess, some of the work that's, you know, doing well across the globe at the moment. And what I wanted to talk to at this particular Cannes last year, Droga tried to ban the word advertising at the festival. I sort of read a few articles around that me sort of suggest that we shouldn't be talking about advertising per se. We should be using the word content instead. And I think this idea was actually reflected in a lot of the winning work. And one of the things that I noticed was kind of a big focus on purpose power and a lot of the brands that won a lot of those sort of Grand Prix categories, it seemed like they were sort of talking about the purpose of that brand and its place in sort of society and culture more so than they were, you know, traditionally pushing products and services as advertising tends to typically do. So I sort of just wanted to use that as a bit of a focal point for us and something to talk to because I think it's quite interesting, especially following COVID. And I wanted to sort of ask your perspective on that and sort of, I guess, really ask, do we think advertising or content, as we're now calling it, do we think maybe it's become too serious potentially?
Sue [00:08:30] I think one of the things is that, you know, Dave Droga is a very, very clever man and heavy user as I said he was at Mojo and he's done amazingly. But, I think with all advertising, all content or whatever you want to call it, you really have to take into thought. It's the social currency of the day is what is going on. And so it was quite a serious time through all of that. And I know that with that, Kyra, that they did at Cairns and everything else, it still had a lot of emotion in it. Do we take it too seriously? I think brand purpose; every brand needs to have a purpose. And I always say big brands have big voices that they can help. But at the end of the day, the consumer, whoever it is that you're trying to appeal to, is the decision-maker. And so, you know, we recently did some research, Glenda, you'll recall, which was talking about how important sustainability was. And everybody had said it's absolutely the most important but in reality when it came to price, they couldn't and they won't be able to because the way things are going at the moment, you know, it's serious. They want to support it, but they just it's viably impossible for them. So, yes, but humour, it's for a select few. But I think that social currency thing is really important but people do like humour. They like to like the ad. They like to like you. And they don't want it to be too serious. What they want is to know that you understand them. They want to like you, so it's like anybody else likeability.
Glenda [00:10:36] Because I think a lot of the time we take ourselves too seriously in advertising, do you know what I mean? I think we're losing a bit of that laughter. And I just think that you look at those winners at Cairns and the laughter has gone because we can afford to laugh at ourselves, can't we, you know, that is having a sense of humour and like you say, likeability. I had a very famous politician once who told me that people vote for the person that they most want to sit down and have a cup of coffee or a beer with and or a meal or whatever it might be that's who they actually end up voting for. So I just look at over the years, Sue and you think back over your career, you've seen an awful lot of creative and you've sold in an awful lot of creative that not only includes humour, but it also includes the jingle because I'm a great fan of the jingle. Have you got any favourite campaigns that include any of these elements?
Sue [00:11:39] Music is to me a great, you know, it's incredibly emotive in the way that it's done in some of the jingles that we look at and know that prior to my time at Mojo, of course, you had Mo and Joe the kings of the jingles and you know, Lee and Qantas are very favoured, I suppose, would have to be and I know you would talk about it later, but was always and still is Come on Aussie. I mean I can watch that a million times and a little bit like Mike Brady we did Up There Cazaly for the AFL you know it's to me. And then there were all of the other funny ones but Tourism Vic, which was excellent for a long time, always used great music behind it that was people knew so there was a familiarity there already. And I think the one that was one of my favourites was Run Rabbit Run, which was Darren Spiller who was that? Didn't make it, but it had some magic moments in it that ran with that music that people like that familiarity.
Jack [00:12:56] It's funny how much it sort of can bring you back to a point in your life as well. You sort of just said Run, Rabbit, Run then to me. And I hadn't thought about that phrase, let alone the melody or the song that's attached to those particular words. But in my head, I just shot back to this completely different phase of my life. And it's just the power of the words alone. But as you say, the power of the music is just so compelling, isn't it, it's no wonder why, as advertisers, you know, you see it having such a huge impact on a lot of the work.
Glenda [00:13:23] But, you know, just to your point, before about Up There Cazaly, what do they do, every AFL grand final, what are they all rolling out and singing? It's just been evergreen.
Sue [00:13:35] It's the anthem, absolutely.
Glenda [00:13:39] And it started with a commercial.
Sue [00:13:41] Absolutely, you know, and we love that stuff. And I think, you know, you go back to, say, Queen, the group and even with themselves when they were flailing off just creating the anthem, you know that we hear so many times because that emotive. And when you talk about things with jingles, you know, my son, I remember even now when I was talking to him about this the other night, he is in his late 20s. So he reeled, you know, raised in the city, there you go, every single word and 1330, whatever it was.
Jack [00:14:24] 32, Yes, I remember that one, it was a classic.
Sue [00:14:24] That's the one, well, yes, absolutely and so they were llike ear worms because they went on so often but the media was a bit different thing. But even when I think you mention was Not Sorry Jan those ones.
Jack [00:14:44] Exactly those little phrases that stick with you and it's funny, as you're saying, to kind of use them as a point in time and as a reference point to maybe, you know, it's indicative of someone's age to an extent which ads they may or may not remember. And we actually did a bit of a poll throughout the office and we asked them three questions. What did we ask? We asked what's the best out of all time? We asked them for the best ad jingle of all time. And we also asked the funniest ad, but starting with the best out of all time. There's quite a few different suggestions here, but honourable mentions go to, There Are Dumb Ways to Die. There is a number of different nominations for Qantas. I know they've done a huge amount of incredible campaigns, but the ad that actually won the most mentions here was It's a Big Ad by Carlton Draught. Do you remember two remember that one?
Glenda [00:15:31] Yes.
Jack [00:15:32] What were your thoughts on it?
Sue [00:15:33] Absolutely, certainly.
Glenda [00:15:35] I wouldn't say it was the best ad of all time.
Sue [00:15:38] I'm just going to say, you know, that's another thing of the time. You know, it was a first. And as I said to, you know, Grant Rutherford who had been at Mojo, as well. I met them on the plane that day, they said, we'll be going up to present this idea, people didn't know that it is going to be that.
Jack [00:15:55] There you go, yes.
Sue [00:15:57] Yes but that ad itself, because it was so unusual and it was a first and I agree with you, Glenda, I would say thought it's memorable. And so therefore that recall of it is important and that's what you want. It's awareness. So, yes, so I do understand that.
Jack [00:16:23] Yes, it's interesting because it was one of those things where I saw it mentioned a number of times and the results from the people in the office. And I sort of thought, oh, okay, I remember that, but I don't remember it being that particularly good. Then I rewatched it and I was like, no, this actually is incredible because I think through a 2023 lens it might feel a little bit gimmicky. But I think especially at the time, there's sort of a real level of self-awareness to it and a kind of breaking down of that fourth wall, which I think in 2023 might seem like a bit of an overdone trope in a way. But I think especially at that time, it was such a kind of powerful, almost vulnerable thing to do in the creative to kind of, you know, refer back to yourself and say, you know, this is a beer ad, you know, like I think there's at that time I think that probably really shocked people, which is interesting. But I'm just going to move on to the best ad jingle as well. And there are also a number of different responses here. And I think with this one, with the jingle especially, it was interesting to see some more modern mentions as well as kind of those classic ones. So a number of people actually said the Menulog work that was done with Snoop Dogg and Katy Perry, which is, you know, very modern and quite interesting. Another one I hadn't heard of in a while, but I Feel Like Chicken Tonight, do either of you remember that one?
Glenda [00:17:35] Because my kids used to eat Chicken Tonight all the time because of it.
Jack [00:17:38] I don't know that I ate Chicken Tonight especially, but I definitely spoke about eating chicken too much.
Glenda [00:17:43] Yes, like they would walk around going, I feel like chicken tonight, like they loved it.
Jack [00:17:47] I think I did too. Again here, Qantas got a few mentions as well. You mentioned earlier, oh, no, not this one, this is a similar one to the Lube Mobil, but the 1300655506 for the reading writing hotline, did you remember that one?
Glenda [00:18:02] Nine.
Jack [00:18:02] Oh well that got that got a few mentions.
Sue [00:18:04] My sister, she said that too.
Jack [00:18:07] There you go, yes it's interesting.
Sue [00:18:08] I don't remember it all.
Glenda [00:18:11] Neither do I.
Jack [00:18:12] Well then other than that there was the Lube mobil as you mentioned before, Sue. And then these are more classic sort of iconic Australian ones. We've got Happy Little Vegemite, Aussie Kids Are Weetbix Kids, My Mum Gives Me Milo, then I threw this one here. I wasn't sure if this was just a Queensland thing, but was Slip, slop, Slap National, wasn't that a goodie?
Glenda [00:18:31] That was great.
Sue [00:18:32] That was fantastic.
Glenda [00:18:34] They are still doing it though, aren't they? No, they're not using it. I cannot understand why a lot of these organisations don't bring them back because I remember being part of a discussion at McCann's around whether or not we're going to kill off Louie the Fly. And I was just, no, why would you do it? You know, like it's had years and years and years and years of heritage there that was had a legacy like we talk about, you know, these legacies and I just I'm like, no.
Jack [00:19:05] We were saying that the other day. It's almost like some of these characters and these jingles; they sort of become a part of the family to an extent as well. I think they just become that sort of ingrained in the culture and the conversations you're having just before dinner time. I Feel Like Chicken Tonight or, you know, We're Going Out for a Swim, Slip, Slop, Slap. It's just kind of like that. It's almost as if there's no branding attached to it. It's just what you've been saying your whole life.
Glenda [00:19:25] But I was mortified because I had KFC's Hugo Said, You Go and I Said, No, You Go and nobody actually could remember that. I loved it and you could see, I could still see the cartoon characters and everything going on and I was just how could nobody not know that ad, like KFC bring it back.
Sue [00:19:49] There was, you know, You Ought To Be Congratulated, which everybody knew. And for three freaking years they tried to redo that jingle and made the ad. And it didn't pass in research. What was wrong with You Ought To Be Congratulated. Everybody knew it and off it went. And Peter Jackson made three Lord of the Rings movies in the same time. So you have to ask yourself, where's the power shift because we all know often when a new person comes in, they like to put their stamp on their communications go but I'm with you, Glenda.
Glenda [00:20:31] That's really a good point there. A lot of these ideas that have been brilliant, the most consistent I always think about a lot of the marketers they forget, the most consistent team working on the business is or working on their business is actually the agency. And for years, there's a whole string of new marketing team members come and go and all the rest of it. And often you're the one with all the knowledge and the background. And they do want to make a change and it's not necessary. It's a very brave marketer that sits there and says, actually, this is great, let's make it even better.
Jack [00:21:09] Compare the market.
Glenda [00:21:10] That's a really good example where they've got a difficult name and they've used those meerkats so well, and at one stage they started to move away from it and they've bought the meerkats back because I bet you there's a bit of research sitting out there saying you've taken a dip now and you know that it's not memorable anymore. And that's what I think we're trying to say with humour and a lot of these jingles and things you actually can remember.
Jack [00:21:35] And I think with that as well, I think it requires an element of bravery from the client too. Like I think that is especially brave to roll with the meerkats campaign. But how incredibly effective is it? You know, everybody knows the name so yes, that's interesting. So we've touched on the jingle and we've touched on the best out of all time. So the last question we ask them is what's the funniest ad of all time? And so this one was very divided. There were some mentions for a Specsavers sauna ad, which I wasn't familiar with. I had to look it up. It had Gordon Ramsay in it; it was a little bit racy. There are a few mentions of Budweiser's Whassup, KFC's Awkward Moments. And of course, as I mentioned earlier, Not Happy, Jan, which is a personal favourite of mine, but one that I really liked, and that's arguably one of the greatest Australian ads of all time, the Not Happy, Jan. But anyway, I think this is of a similar ilk and kind of a similar sort of era is the ad for Paul Smarter White Milk, do you remember that one?
Sue [00:22:27] So no, I don't really.
Jack [00:22:29] Glenda didn't either.
Glenda [00:22:31] You know what, I was so disappointed in my staff thinking that that was the best ad of all time, I thought, oh my God.
Jack [00:22:41] I don't know that wasn't a general consensus. There were a few votes for that one. It was also my personal favourite. So I've got to go in front.
Sue [00:22:47] So what did the ad say?
Jack [00:22:48] So effectively I think the reason I think it was interesting is because watching it again in 2023, I think the insight is kind of got a new life. This man goes into a shop and at the time is kind of the insight was around there being that many different varieties of milk at that point in time between, you know, high calcium, low calcium soy something something an extra dollop. And the guy goes, I just want milk that tastes like real milk or real, you know, whatever it is. And I just think it's this sort of deadpaness to the comedy in it that I think, again, sort of at the time was quite almost confronting for Australians to see in an ad. And I think maybe that's why it impacted me the way it did at the time. But I also just think it's funny and I also think, you know, now we're gravitating between almond and oat and soy and, you know, Zymil and all the different milks. It's kind of got a new life in a way. So I just, I think it's an interesting thing to see how that's sort of come full circle. I certainly think it's funny.
Glenda [00:23:46] But you know what, some of us older ones, we think about all the cigarette ads and things like that or Brut 33.
Jack [00:23:55] Is that the deodorant?
Glenda [00:23:57] Where would you be without Brut 33 like, you look at some of those ads and stuff and you go back and you go, they were actually I personally think they are far more memorable and funnier.
Jack [00:24:08] Looking back in hindsight.
Sue [00:24:10] Well, Imperial Leather soap, with those things, the humour, a lot of it is the talent. You know, when you think about it, you say the guy in that ad, the way he responds, the way that he gets an ad, it's a bit like the castle with the Kerrigan, you know. I mean, how much do we love that because everything about that is just so vogue and a bit fabulous. It's the same with the talent selection, the direction.
Jack [00:24:43] Yes that's interesting because there's a bit of Kerrigan in all of us, isn't there? I think that's interesting, there is a relatability and accessibility that I think often resonates with a lot of people. And I think that Paul's milk ad is very much that. I think we can kind of see ourselves in that bloke a little bit, even though we might not want to. I think there's something interesting in that also.
Glenda [00:25:04] So I wonder if the fact that we didn't have the layers in creative that we have now, I wonder all the layered roles that we have leading into the idea. I wonder if that actually helped those creatives a lot more to get a few of those different ideas and our clients were very different, if you think about it, dare I say it, back in those days we had a lot of clients that came from a sales background as opposed to a marketing background, and so they had they sort of leaned on intuition a lot more than learned knowledge. And when I think as marketers have come in from the universities and they've been trained in marketing, they have a very systematic approach compared to what was once, you know, the type of people that we used to do it all. So I wonder if that's actually, you know, has that done something to advertising? I don't know. I think sometimes you've got to.
Sue [00:26:02] Of course it has, you know, because it has because one of the things that used to be it's like marketing roles, which grow the business from within so it was about doing that. And then the advertising role was to work with the marketing people to take that idea and be the invitation to get them across the door, to get people across the door. I think with any ad that becomes a colloquialism in the language, like Not Happy, Jan, have a Winfield or whatever they were Shrimp On The Barbie is something that has hit the point. And not everybody's going to love them. But, you know, I mean, even when you think about how important emotions are, I often think about emojis. I mean, that's become its own language and their emotive single, you know, and people would like, you know, I've done it where you write a whole sentence just using emojis and go work that one out, you know but it's just that's how people think about it. But I think one of the big things about it is this advertising is taken sometimes too seriously and people will complain and, you know, there'll be all the bullshit that goes on with that. But in actual fact, it's not true. It's an ad, it's entertainment, it's a story, it's all of those things. So people have to work with that. It's and I think people, even marketers themselves are fearful because there's a backlash often.
Glenda [00:27:53] Apparently the average person now is exposed to about 10,000 communications in an average week. It used to be about 1500. The last big study, I know Unilever did one in the late '80s. And so I look at that people, your brands have to cut through and there's all this wallpaper out there at the moment because it feels like it's, you know, these jingles and the humour and the brand building is missing at the moment. And I don't believe in going backwards, but I do believe and we can't go back, we can have a laugh about the past and we can bring things back, but we can learn from the past and bring those learnings forward and it helps us to continue to evolve. And I just really feel that when you take an agency like Mojo and they really were hailed as the jingle agency of the day, they really were, weren't they, Sue and I think that they were also nurturing that sense of humour into those ads that was Australian. They were iconic, you know, that dry sense of humour that came through and people really do love that so much, don't they, Sue?
Sue [00:29:05] So well, you know, when you look at MaedowLea they were talking about that and they were saying, you know, how did you come up with that idea? And whichever one it was said, congratulate, it was the only word we could find that rhymed with polyunsaturated. They had that leeway, they had that respect. People basically haven't changed.
Glenda [00:29:31] No, they haven't.
Sue [00:29:31] You know, and you're right, because the exposure of things, it's how you use the medium. So whether it's Tiktok, it gives you a bit of freedom to be a bit funnier and a bit more, you know, have a bit of fun with Instagram or Twitter is a little bit different not that I'm a huge Twitter person, but I just find it interesting is that you have to be able to adapt to the medium because Mrs Bloggs who's sitting there. She doesn't look at all of that. You know, she's a 55+ woman. She's not going on to all of those things. So, yes, it is a bit serious. And you're right, Glenda, you learn from the past. I keep seeing David Ogilvy quotes put up everywhere. David Ogilvy would be probably about 120 by now. But what he says is true.
Jack [00:30:24] It rings true.
Sue [00:30:25] The things that he said.
Jack [00:30:27] Yes, and I think you sort of mentioned this before, Sue, but there's a simplicity in the way in which a jingle can kind of become a part of the Australian vernacular. And we sort of touched on it a little bit earlier. But I guess having worked at Mojo and being so close to, you know, that sort of era, we wanted to maybe talk a little bit to a particular jingle that still, you know, I sing especially during cricket season, which is Come On, Aussie, Come On, we're hoping you might be able to shed a little bit of light on that or maybe any insights you might have around, I guess the inception of that idea and how it's, you know, managed to have longevity for such a prolonged period of time.
Sue [00:31:01] And I think, you know, one of the things with that story was really interesting. It was before my time, as I said, because I think it was in '88, Kerry Packer was doing is one day matches or whatever they call them. First year wasn't that successful and the story has the tech up pulled them in and said, get those blokes in here, get them to write up a song and they came up with a cigarette hanging out of his mouth as he said it. But they did and they did it quickly. I just love the story that came out and it was so even the first time I saw it, you know, Lily's standing there like a machine. You just go, oh, my God, they just nailed it. And I'm sure there weren't five research sessions and new runs on their brains and everything else. They understood who they were talking to well, that's why I think something like that is a thing.
Glenda [00:32:07] They just had that natural inclination, didn't they, they understood the Australian market at the time and they understood the, the passion that they could actually stir up in that game. And when you think about it, you go to a game now and everyone's saying, Come On, Aussie, Come On. Like, you know what I mean, like it's sung all over the place at different times. It's huge.
Sue [00:32:30] But it went off, you know, there was Cornell, there was Hogan, there was the Mojo guys. They were all leading with each other. And once that, you know, I had no interest in cricket really at all. But those one-day matches became great. You know, it was a great time and they did so well the way they did it. There was a lot of fighting going on with that record, etc., etc.. so yes that was a great story.
Jack [00:33:02] Well, there you go well, I think yes, I think that's a great example of a lot of campaigns we've spoken to today that historically have tackled that emotional connection, first and foremost, and sort of being able to build brand from there. I think I sort of wanted to just kind of steer this slightly and we've kind of touched this territory a little bit but something I wanted to talk to is, I guess this idea we talk about in modern advertising or in modern marketing, we're talking about this kind of new school of marketing and potentially are things maybe sometimes becoming overcomplicated? But I guess as a rule of thumb, we often talk to this idea of splitting roughly around, you know, 60% should be based on your brand building. Then 40% is, you know, your mid-funnel and your sales activation and all that sort of thing. But as I sort of just said, we know that emotional brand building ultimately over time really pays dividends. So, you know, why are we starting to potentially see this in decline and are clients possibly becoming too conservative and short-term driven, or do we think maybe agencies are no longer bold or adventurous enough? It's a big question.
Glenda [00:34:01] I think that's a bit of everything.
Jack [00:34:03] I think you could say a little bit for all of those pieces right, it's a big balancing act.
Sue [00:34:08] All I have to say is that I'm a great believer of and with our clients we still encourage it is to connect with their audience. You know, when we did, we launched Garnier of out Publicis Mojo. We had the funds to do it and we did the tennis, the AO. It was an astounding success. We had managed to build amazing structures and do station dominations. We had the media budget. We had all of those things. But even now, and that brand did so well after that. But even now, we encourage our clients to have activations and to connect with their target market. And we've done some pretty, you know, if you go, well, that's pretty simplistic, but oh my gosh, they have worked so much recruiting people that likeability we were talking about and you understand me and they were fun and they got prizes and they weren't complex.
Jack [00:35:22] I think I actually remember this was this for some reason I have in my head and this is probably testimony to what you're saying, just the value of distinct, memorable assets. But I think I recall the so the Garnier logo, but circles were replaced with tennis balls. I have that in my head potentially, I don't know, they're stirring up something for me and I would have been quite young at that point in time that's, you know, that's testimony to what you're saying. These things are memorable and they're salient. They're memorable over prolonged period of time.
Glenda [00:35:48] They totally are but I often wonder, Sue, with digital media coming into play and a lot of clients trying to gravitate towards digital that shorter duration there's all this wallpaper going on they are spending less, you know what I mean and I just wonder if they don't look at the value of that cut through the same as they should do in those environments. Do you know what I mean? It's becomes all about the click, it becomes all about the ROAS or the lead gen and everything like that is even when you go in with a reach-based campaign or an awareness-based campaign and you're using digital media, as soon as the client can see that they can measure a click or lead or whatever it may be, that you're after a sale, they immediately, they bring it back to that. And so it's a real like I had a meeting earlier today and it's for an e-commerce client and who want an awareness campaign and we're sitting there saying one of our digital people or performance people said, well, as soon as you actually use this channel, the client is actually going to compare it to the performance work we do. And they're right; the client will bring it back to that performance base. And I do wonder if that's actually why that adventure piece of being prepared to actually explore other ideas or to actually really sort of start engaging with the audience on the whole is actually dying because it's all grossly diminished.
Sue [00:37:21] It's interesting that you bring that up. The CTR or all of those things. I do think that the client, of course, you want something that's measurable that's what they look for. I have been quite up front with clients and have done lots of my own sort of research where people don't shop that way. You know, as you talked about, whether it's so much wallpaper around there, they think about it longer. I mean, how many times really do you, you have a couple of choices. And so if you get a measure on the CTR that's to me wrong, because that's not how people shop. So all you are really trying to do is to get on their list of options, to be there. Everybody wants a measure of mobility so they can justify what they've done. But I think that you also have to be strong enough, not you personally, but I'm just saying a lot of times with agencies and things like that have to dig deep to find that this is not how this person how they shop because the choices are vast and wide.
Jack [00:38:49] It's tricky.
Sue [00:38:50] Also, who are you with, it is tricky because the way that marketing runs and I feel for them because they want to hang on to their jobs. They often don't have the capacity within their own organisations because you will find and you've probably over the years too, Glenda, you know, when somebody's had this wasn't going that well, the easiest thing to cut was the advertising budget.
Glenda [00:39:19] Absolutely.
Sue [00:39:20] You know, you could slash that in half because it really doesn't have people attached to it except for the agencies so that's why I try with most of the stuff that I give to our clients is to have some sort of substantiated truth under there that comes from a credible source. So it's not just me saying it that it might be McKinsey, it might be PWC, it might be Nielsen, it might be something because it's the truth and that's the truth on those things.
Jack [00:40:01] As advertisers as well, I think it's the challenge you come up against sometimes is as much research that there may be out there to reiterate the importance of brand building or awareness building. It's kind of difficult to put yourself in marketers shoes or clients shoes often because, as you say, they are KPI'd upon often like a sales figure. And I mean, it's in human nature to be inclined to invest heavily into something that's directly attributable to a sale, which is of course typically lower funnel digital conversion channels. But I guess it's our job to reinstate the importance and the understanding of that consumer journey and the multiple consumer touch points in which it starts with awareness. And just because you can't directly attribute awareness to a sale always, it's, you know, stressing the importance of that, which is easier said than done sometimes as we all know.
Glenda [00:40:50] Don't get me started.
Sue [00:40:52] When I got into advertising, I was doing, you know, you did six months in, you did six months in production, you did six months in creative. So you were doing almost like an internship internally, so you were watching other people and doing all of those things. They don't get that opportunity and they don't get that opportunity to see people in action.
Glenda [00:41:15] I did the same, Sue. I did six months, a six-month cycle through the agency and in different areas, you know, six months in production, six months. And gosh, they even put me in finance for six months. And I couldn't understand finance. It was hideous and then they put me in media and I stayed there. But do you know what I mean? Like, we did do those cycles, so we did get to actually get exposed to different parts of the agency and see how, you know, different things actually work. You think about the creative departments back in the day where we had Letraset, you know, Letraset we had bromide machines. We had all sorts of things that just don't even exist now because you used to send physical material to the like film in Chromealons and things like that that you'd actually sent the magazine and the press.
Jack [00:42:06] Like a more heavy-duty fax machine or something?
Glenda [00:42:09] No, it actually made the ad, it actually produced a.
Sue [00:42:13] Go and do your homework.
Glenda [00:42:15] Go and do your homework.
Jack [00:42:17] I'll have to look it up.
Glenda [00:42:21] We had a whole group of people that just don't exist in our industry anymore because of computers basically, don't say anything about us being old.
Jack [00:42:31] I won't, I'm intrigued.
Glenda [00:42:34] It's true because in the '80s, when the crash occurred in the '80s, we literally lost about half of the industry because it wasn't just the crash that occurred. We also had the onset of new technology because all the, you know, the beautiful artists like our art directors, they used to create beautiful all those storyboards and everything and the bits of I've got a lot of art from art directors and that I've worked with and it was beautiful, like absolutely stunning work because they create that all by hand. And so you forget that there were all these people, there that just didn't exist now. Now they push it all out in a computer. We were talking about this the other day, even the way that you actually could do strip heads in the middle of magazines and all sorts of things that you can't do now.
Sue [00:43:27] They were great, weren't they?
Glenda [00:43:29] Yes, despite the fact you've got all this technology, they turn around say, no, they can't do that, it's all cookie cutter stuff now.
Jack [00:43:36] Somehow more limited in a way.
Glenda [00:43:38] It's way more limited, like the imagination now, look, I look at these audiences that we've touched about and we've, you know, they're my passion point. And I look at it and I go, our audience is no longer receptive to some of these ads because it's a one minute world, a one second world, I should say that they, you know, with all these digital platforms and shorter ad durations and we can see that like 6 seconds works much better in social than the 15 seconder, you know, is there, is it too hard to connect with them now? If they just removed, look at Tiktok.
Sue [00:44:13] You've got to have a hook.
Glenda [00:44:17] Don't you think Happy Little Vegemite would work well on Tiktok? I think it would.
Sue [00:44:25] Yes, maybe, you know, I think it's about having that fun. I know that dogs work, okay, absolutely because that's all I really look at is the dog. So you've got me there. But it's interesting that you say that it is what catches your attention, you know and that's the big thing and how can we be clever enough to do it? One of the interesting things was even, you know, like at Mojo, when you're talking about the introduction or the lack of people going, when YouTube came out, the creatives used to go on to YouTube and go through it mercilessly looking for new ways and, new execution people were doing. And so I think that that's where we've got jilted, too, because if you look at some of the ads that are on there, on TV or whatever, you will find that the way that they're assembled is trying to emulate another channel's strength, which doesn't really work.
Jack [00:45:27] Yes, well, it's interesting that, isn't it because that sort of relationship these days between media and creative and I think how much more sensitive creative needs to be and how much more tailored it needs to be to the platform. I think, you know, that's something I feel like we've said a million times and one. But this expectation that for a lot of us, we still kind of see creativity or see a campaign is sort of all starting around a 30-second TVC and then that's just sort of applied across everything, which it does exist to a certain extent. But I think designing platform first is something where in a lot of good work and good campaigns, we're starting to see happen a lot more. And I think that kind of begs the question with this idea of, you know, does the jingle still exist or does brand building still exist? I think maybe it does, but we're just doing sort of old things in new ways when we talk about Tiktok, as you said, so that's it's all about having that hook and having that sort of core idea that gets you in. So I think in some ways, you know, you do have your dance trends and your different sounds and what have you on Tiktok. So potentially, you know, are Tiktoks the new jingles, I don't know, probably not. It's a bit of a stretch, but it's interesting to see how that's evolved.
Glenda [00:46:32] Hey, Sue, so with all your experience, what's the one thing that advertisers need to take out of the past and bring back to the future for success, to set them up for success because it's harder for marketers now, I think.
Sue [00:46:47] Oh, I don't know, love of brand is really important and so the brand that you work on, I mean, you would have found that say even with working with L'Oreal or, you know, Garnier, all of those things, we still have brand love but I think it's almost like a three-way street. You know, there's brand, the agency, the media person or whoever that is and then there's the client and it's almost like relegating trust again. I honestly would have to think a lot harder about that if there was one thing I would say spend more money that would be excellent.
Glenda [00:47:30] I will be seconding that.
Sue [00:47:32] Product.
Glenda [00:47:34] Because I think they try to do too much with too little. They really do these days, they try to do too much with too little and it doesn't set them up for success, you know, it really doesn't. And I feel sorry for marketers, I know that they've got lots of pressure on them internally and some of the key stakeholders within organisations are very skeptical and they give the average marketer a pretty hard time, I think, from an internal point of view. But actually some of those budgets that we have are just totally unrealistic. And I look at it and I just go, you can't do that, or you'll get a young marketer, who doesn't have any senior management above them and they'll spend, you know, $300,000 or $400,000 on making an ad and then they'll give the media team 50 grand and say, why can't you give us all this brand awareness or why can't you actually achieve all these things? And I think they're disproportionately out of kilter with what their expectations are. Do you know what I mean? And I think that's an experience thing. And that's because the senior roles aren't necessarily in organisations that they once were to help teach these young ones and bring them through.
Sue [00:48:46] That's a massive issue, actually, what you bring up, it's about the spend ratio. Nothing's for nothing really at the end of the day.
Glenda [00:48:54] Yes, exactly.
Sue [00:48:55] And whilst people like to leave a mark of I've made a great ad, nobody sees it, is it a great ad? Is it worth it? Is it, you know.
Glenda [00:49:08] It's like having the best kept secret. Now, Sue, we're coming to the end of the show and I like to finish the show with a little discussion around what is the most useless invention that you know.
Sue [00:49:24] Well, interesting you should say that, because I did laugh a lot when you said that and I had to even go on Google to the most useless invention. I knew you wouldn't be happy, but I did decide on something. Being a glasses wearer as I am and going through my I will have a designer, paid a massive amount of money for the rimless glasses. So they had no rims around them whatsoever, it costs me 500 bucks for the frames and 750 for the lens. And I realised that I'd actually pay 550 bucks for three sticks, one stick across here and two sticks the other side. So to me, I'm confusing my own personal experience here that is the most ridiculous invention ever. Apart from all the other things I found on Google, which were fabulous. I'm sorry, Glenda. I had to take that to myself.
Glenda [00:50:34] Do you know what mine is?
Sue [00:50:35] Pray tell.
Glenda [00:50:37] Viagra, I was working on a competitor of theirs, and Viagra only works in 70% of all cases where the client's product was the only one that worked in a 100%, it gave you an instant erection. I went from that brief to a brief on Durex, which is for another story on another day, because it was very funny and we were in hysterics because we just had been briefed on this injection on the base of the penis. And then we had to go to the Durex client and be briefed on Durex and we literally went from one to the other. We just [00:51:09]felt with [0.2s] our pants it was just shocking. It was a great day. It was hilarious. And so I was saying to the team before, it's quite interesting the amount, the information that we retain because we come across so many different products and so many different brands and we've had so many different briefs and we're exposed to things in the background. And so you remember the most, you retain these weird facts sometimes, anyway, that's my sharing for the day that'll probably get edited out.
Jack [00:51:38] That might end up on Tiktok, Glenda.
Glenda [00:51:40] No, we can't go on Tiktok, I'll get cancelled.
Jack [00:51:45] My nomination for the for the invention was a little more savoury, but I had to do the same thing, so I couldn't think of anything off the top of my head. I had to Google it, but I came across these things that exist apparently they are called shoe umbrellas and you clip it to the front of your shoe and it keeps your shoes dry, which I think, you know, serves some purpose.
Sue [00:52:05] What's wrong with that, Jack? I think that's excellent.
Jack [00:52:09] Like I said, I guess it's practical maybe from an appearance perspective; it wouldn't be too crash hot. But then again, I'm a wearer of Crocs every now and then. So, you know, I probably can't talk.
Glenda [00:52:20] So not only do you wear Crocs.
Jack [00:52:23] I do every now and then and they actually have the little things you can clip in. So maybe they have an umbrella one, but you don't need it with Crocs because they're waterproof.
Glenda [00:52:32] I've only got about two brands, I wear these days Hush Puppies and Rollies, they are about the only ones I ever use and they are both Australian brands, aren't they or no, Hush Puppies aren't but they're good Aussie brand.
Sue [00:52:44] Yes, we won't talk about your Crocs anymore.
Glenda [00:52:47] Because they're dreadful.
Jack [00:52:49] Yes, I mean I was very anti-Crocs for a very long time.
Sue [00:52:55] Justin Bieber, you saw Justin Bieber was selling them, didn't you and you went, I'm going to have those Crocs.
Jack [00:52:59] Does he have a brand?
Glenda [00:53:02] He does.
Jack [00:53:02] Does he have a Bieber variation of Crocs?
Sue [00:53:06] Yes, I have to tell you, that Crocs have been, every part of them is hideous. They have spent, have a look at people that they have used for their shoes, like Bieber, he did a whole sort of range for them, somebody else; I don't know who that was. But you know and they just pumped it out there through social media. And it was you know and then at the not the Grammys but one of those millions of award themes there were people wearing Diamonte Crocs and Balenciaga had a pair for $1,100 dollars.
Jack [00:53:48] Of course they did. Well, there you go. It's a sophisticated brand.
Sue [00:53:51] It is actually. You are on it. You're on it.
Glenda [00:53:55] Because you are wearing them, of course they are, Jack, of course they are.
Jack [00:53:58] That is in vogue at the moment, maybe they're on the way out, I'm not typically on the trends, to be honest, I'm pretty behind the eight ball.
Glenda [00:54:06] Sue, thank you so much for giving us your time.
Sue [00:54:09] I loved it. It was great. Take care. Thank you.
Jack [00:54:12] Thank you so much. We've had wonderful guests, Sue Perry on, Director of Brand Development at the Media Hut. And you can find Sue's bio and link in our credits. And if you want to get in touch with G.W. or myself, please see the contact details in our bio.
Glenda [00:54:26] Yes, thanks, Sue, she was just amazing, wasn't she? She's really brilliant. And look, please feel free to join the Pending Approval community if you'd like to. You can sign up to our mailing list and join the conversation at mediaprecinct.com.au/pending approval.
Jack [00:54:43] There we go.
Glenda [00:54:44] Oh, my God, good bye, everybody, do come back.
Speaker 1 [00:54:47] May I have your attention, please? This is Pending Approval, advertising from the inside out.