Our days are filled with questions that oppose passionate visions and whose principle is the need for an answer from one sense or the other. Mac or PC? iPhone or Android? Electric or combustion car? These are some examples that presuppose that we must make a choice because one option is better than another and that, sooner or later, this will be imposed.
Our memory reminds us that in some cases it was like this, such as the iPhone or Blackberry. This one in particular also reminds us of today’s anecdotal reaction by Steve Ballmer, Microsoft CEO at the time, to the fact that the iPhone costs $500 and doesn’t have a keyboard. If this duel confirmed that the best ends up winning and that we have an advantage in choosing the winning side early, we also have examples where the one who won had a relatively short reign, as in the case of the duel between Beta and VHS. In other words, we have examples for everything. Duels in which someone has imposed themselves, duels in which both compete for many years and duels with winners that are too ephemeral for us to truly remember them as such and, more importantly, so that there is a real benefit or harm for those who made an early choice or persisted in the wrong.
A less passionate vision will tend to show us that evolution is marked by incremental progress as well as disruptive leaps. Facebook and Google will be hugely successful examples of incremental innovation, as they weren’t the first to create a social network, or a search engine and an email service, but they clearly became the best while the iPhone is an example of a disruptive innovation not only for the touch-screen hardware but, above all, for the powerful concept of applications in a store open to developers from all over the world.
But this less passionate vision also shows us that evolution is often marked by the coexistence of some solutions and that success in new ways does not always mean the death of the previous ones.
The advertising media market is an excellent example in which incremental and disruptive innovation has more often led to coexistence between new media and those that have in the meantime become the traditional ones, than to replacement, as was almost always predicted. If we trust Wikipedia’s information, the first print ad dates back to 1472 in England, the first radio ad in the 20s of the last century, and just 20 years later, in the 40s, the first television ad. The internet emerged at the end of the century and if today, twenty years later, the internet has not yet replaced television, this will remind us that TV proved incapable of successfully replacing radio, despite many predictions to the contrary.
The emergence of each medium will be disruptive innovation but we cannot neglect incremental innovation in maintaining the attractiveness of each one. And if there is a line of evolution that we can find today, it is that this incremental evolution, which the digital provides to all media, takes us more towards a path of convergence than what keeps the initial discussion alive.
Print has evolved in the quality of print and paper for centuries, but today it is so convergent with the digital that the discussion is between those who produce the content and platforms that only expand its reach. Television is also heading towards convergence with its consumption increasingly impacted by time-shifted, and with TV channels launching subscription streaming offers. Radio lives with the accelerated growth of on-demand podcasts, which grow as we move without having to be 100 percent focused on traffic, either because we prefer the cost of an Uber to owning another car, or because we are going to have auto-pilot cars.
But one of the media that benefits most from incremental innovation is outdoor. The capabilities and cost reduction of huge screens that allow for impressive visual experiences, along with the flexibility to update creativity is revolutionizing this medium. At a time when we all travel less, images come to us of fantastic activations in Times Square, Singapore, Beijing and even Zara stores in New York.
And if these examples show us that convergence is the trend that challenges previous rankings, they also show us that advertising effectiveness is, as it always has been, closely linked to creativity and the impact of the contact provided, rather than the number of contacts. obtained regardless of their quality.
Of course, performance and an analytics tool that we trust are fundamental today, but when we look at these activations, we realize that there is an impact here that should not fail to refer to the idea that the quality of contact overlaps with quantity.
In the same way that the iPhone won, even though it costs five times as much as the Windows Mobile that Steve Ballmer was trying to protect, the advertising asserts itself for the recall and for the attributes that it adds or reinforces in brands. And that’s not in Excel that compares the cost of contact regardless of where and how it happened.
Opinion article by João Paulo Luz, digital business director and publisher of Impresa
Source: Meios & Publicidade by www.meiosepublicidade.pt.
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