Digital Advertising or the Bulgarian Version

Yesterday, I had yet again to meet a friend over beer and talk about life and business. At a certain moment, the conversation came to a previous post of mine concerning digital advertising and expandable banners (so far my most popular post by views and comments left).

My friend, a marketing professional with extensive brand management experience for a major global brewery with quite a few labels here in Bulgaria, was shocked how personally I am taking this issue. She argued that about 4% of the advertising budget in our country goes online, and very few CMOs take the Internet seriously. So, it is often indeed that whatever the agency offers or the CMO thinks that should be done, is executed without research, analysis and true measurement.  The approach is rather ATL-ish, which means mass media – “Yo, the client! This is the ad. Deal with it!”.

There are almost 1.5 Mn Bulgarian profiles on Facebook (out of a very ageing population of 7.5 Mn in total). There is also that thing called Wi-Fi that is available pretty much everywhere. As a matter of fact, the other day, a friend was able to get connected through a non-secure network in a God-forsaken village with 15 houses. How about that?!? Having that in mind, I think I am entitled to freely getting pissed off at the lack of professionalism and disregard of user experience.

In my mind, marketers are creating valuable experiences, maintaining relationships, and engaging the user. Whether it is the Internet, the mass media or mobile, the purpose of every advertising effort is to generate a positive outcome for the company – sales, cash, better brand/company image etc.

And this is not achieved through screaming at the customer or disrupting his/her life. Advertising campaigns should be carefully researched, planned, executed and analyzed. But more importantly, they should attract, tease and appeal. And if your CMO does not understand that, your job is to point out, without fear of losing your job.

Remember, your boss is the customer! He is the one that pays your salary, mortgage and your daughter’s piano lessons! His Highness is the one that truly writes your performance sheet, no matter what corporate mumbo-jumbo the office uses in their praise.

Copyright © 2010 Borislav Kiprin. All Rights Reserved.

2 Comments

  1. Eric Reiss August 11, 2010 at 10:38 am

    GREAT article! And how curious about the wireless. Here in Denmark, access to the full range of internet services via a phone is either very limited or very expensive. And if I go to the United States, despite free wi-fi at McDonalds and Starbucks, I risk a bill of almost USD 200 per day if I let my phone roam.

    But to your main point. The ads ARE annoying, particularly those that physically get in the way of what I want to read. I take this personally, too, and often boycott products whose advertising I object to.

    Again, great post, Borislav. Remember, if we don’t demand better conditions, we will never receive them.

    1. Borislav Kiprin August 11, 2010 at 11:13 am

      Thank you, Eric!

      I completely agree that the user and the general public for that matter should voice out disagreements and fight for better life, experience and basically quality. There is so much crap around us that we blindly decide to ignore, not considering the fact that we are giving away inch by inch our freedom of choice, speech and personality.

      I hope we’ll have the opportunity to sit down over a lager soon. I am piling up info from my Bulgarian surrounding here that you will find interesting to learn.