Ogilvy Exec Has Print Epiphany; Here’s Why it Matters

printloveIt’s up to the industry to evangelize itself to a generation that grew up on a different media diet; when they get it, the results can be stunning.

Last month we shared the story of an ad industry exec’s change of heart regarding print.

“I won’t lie, my expectations were low,” said Corinna Falusi, Chief Creative Officer at Ogilvy New York on being asked to judge the print category at this year’s Cannes Lion Festival.

“But everything changed. After one week of judging, I left completely inspired and with a new perspective on print: It’s far from dead,” Falusi stated.

In this industry, we already know that. But it’s a good reminder to view things from our customer’s point of view, notes Dr. Joe Webb, quoted in Bo Sack’s blog.

Dr. Webb is quick to point out that there is an important lesson to be learned for the printing business.

“[Falusi] one of the top executives in advertising in the age group of 35-45 years old who grew up, went to college, and entered the workforce, in the computer and the hyperconnected age,” says Webb.

“This is an executive at one of the ad business’ legendary agencies who was cynical about print,” Webb continues. “Why? Because in her experience it did not deliver results expected in relation to costs and acceptance by a target audience. Why else be cynical?

“She left inspired. Why? The possibilities are the potential for ride-along distribution … the emotion of stunning photography that reveals a story… and the immediacy of a promotional stunt. All of these examples required the coordination of other media or channel owners.”

Webb’s point is that many of us are now dealing with a new generation of decision makers who are not versed in print the way we are.

“We sell print as a communications reproduction process, when today it is the execution of a highly interactive creative process. They’re not familiar with print, and sadly, we’re not familiar with them,” Webb notes.

As an industry, we have to educate and evangelize our medium to a generation that grew up on a different diet, and speak to them in terms that resonate in their work. Then we’ll see the lightbulbs go off, as they did so clearly in Falusi’s case.