Thursday, September 17, 2009

Advertising Anti-Advertising

Here's some irony for thought: The more you advertise, the more consumers will ignore you (Adweek, 6/30/09). Hyundai Financial Services seem to have taken this into account with their new campaign in South Korea.

On Monday, the WSJ published an article, entitled "Advertiser Banks on Blank Look" detailing their new ad strategy.

Essentially, Hyundai chose to leave the newly acquired and rather large amounts of ad space minimalistic, if not blank. As Evan Ramstad describes in his article,

"Inside the stations, giant wall signs are all white, except for a small icon that symbolizes one of the company's services, such as a car for car loans, plus a small company logo.

At the entrance and exits of the stations, the giant white panels have a pink eraser in the lower-right corner and a two-sentence explanation. 'The world is flooded with too many ads,' it says. 'For a short while, we want to leave it empty for you'"

While Ramstad reports of other past incidences of "less-is-more" advertising, it certainly seems unique in the current marketing landscape, where every fixture seems to have an ad pasted across it (we are especially aware of this living in New York City).

However, it seems as if we are introduced to yet another example of irony,
as this attack on advertising is really simply another creative way of advertising.

Ironic evaluations aside, what are your thoughts on this campaign? Is this respect for the consumer genuine, or laudable? Is the "ad", by contrast to other ads, captivating? Or have we become so skilled at ignoring ads, that it makes no difference?

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