Get Real. Be Real. Stay Real.

As we examine Hugh’s latest creation, do we find truths neatly revealed? Or clever obfuscation?
First, terms need to be defined. “Madison Avenue” is an actual place, but it’s also a blanket statement for any big, powerful ad agency. There are maybe 100 to 200 such shops in the U.S., of the 10,000 agencies in business.
“Real blog” is problematic, becasue what’s real to one is fantasy or spoof to another. I can see where someone who deploys Moveable Type, Word Press or any other blogware on their site could argue that they have a real blog, whatever it’s style or contents. For our purposes here, real means a blog with an authentic voice, or voices, where there’s a genuine back-and-forth between users and those generating the content.
Here’s a real situation. Marketing people on the client side have to get copy approved by their lawyers. In a regulated industry like beer or spirits, all copy goes through legal, everytime. Period. So, to relax that rule for the blog’s sake is actually asking a lot. It’s asking the client to rethink their approval process.
It is a maverick move to have a real blog. And that fact favors organizations with few layers, who can think on their feet and act fast. To do a customer-facing blog right, the brand team needs to empower an individual or a group of writers to act in real time on behalf of the company.
Those of us who bring marketing blogs into being do not ask much. Just that our clients rethink everything and learn to trust.

About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. In order to both celebrate and critique the industry, I started AdPulp in Chicago in 2004. In 2006, I launched and led an agency content department at BFG. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.