Have you ever diligently searched for some information, or at least several sources, and come up empty handed? Happens to me all the time...I'll get a "great" idea and try to substantiate it, only to find that there is no accessible data. It is frustrating and a bit degrading. Recently, I wanted some hard numbers on the state of the Ad Industry, and wasn't coming up with much besides geusstimates and hype: I wanted data on damage done to date; total layoffs, shops that closed, account spending cuts, etc.
Enter AdWeek. Usually a good source; not one that I would consider as a supplier of inane (lacking sense, significance, void) information. AdWeek usually does a decent job covering the industry, and when I saw a piece done by Mark Dolliver, "How Will Downturn Impact Advertising?" I almost peed in my pants. Finally! I excitedly dug in, expecting some hard-hitting insights from a professional publication and journalist that would leave me much better for reading it.
Wrong! Basically, the article is an opinion-based couple of paragraphs derived from a survey completed by approximately 4500 LinkedIn users. The headline is catchy, and Mr. Dolliver's hook is that "If the Recession doesn't kill advertising, it could make it stronger." There were no answers, just opinion. No data, just speculation. No scientific study...just a poll that is sketchy with vague answer choices ...one being, "Less Advertising."
What in the hell does "less advertising" mean? Less revenue? Physically fewer ads? With spot costs declining, couldn't we have more advertising? If we're basing "less" on volume, the rapid unraveling of the print industry would definitely mean "less advertising."
Stay tuned...as soon as the hard facts come in, I'll get back to you.