Tag Archives: insight

Anatomy of An Insight: Don´t Ask The Internet

Cyberchondria is a growing concern among many healthcare practitioners as patients can now research any and all symptoms of a rare disease, illness or condition, and manifest a state of medical anxiety.

I seldom get sick, but when occasionally I start to feel under the weather I will enter to full-fledged hypochondria. After entering the rabbit hole of Google searches I will be convinced that I have gotten some weird tropical disease and I am on my way to early grave. Knowledge is power, but quite often knowing too much about potential diseases will just result in increased anxiety. To tackle this common behavior, the healthcare app Babylon has launched a new outdoor campaign “Don´t ask the internet. Ask a real doctor”:


Insight: People find visiting their doctor cumbersome, so they try to self-diagnose themselves with Google and avoid doctor visits as long as possible. This results in false diagnoses and growing unsubstantiated fear about potential problems.


Good campaign idea combining the humans need of convenience and rising cyberchondria. Babylon health app provides diagnoses from fully qualified GPs (with some AI) to your mobile phone, so you can get authentic info but don´t need to physically visit doctor:

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Advertising Can Make Even Baby Carrots Desirable


The fact is that majority of brands and products are boring. Being boring is a challenge, because your brand will not be noticed. You are not competing against the other products and brands in category, you are competing of mindspace of your consumer which is increasingly filled with Netflix, Snapchat and other way more interesting things than you brand.

The main role for advertising is to sell more products and how you do it is by making your product more interesting, desirable and thus noticed. Rational arguments don´t really work. Every smoker knows that he would need to quit. You know that you should hit the gym. And you know that carrots are healthy, but you still choose to munch on chips because they just taste good.

This campaign from few years back is a brilliant example of the true power of advertising. You have a great product, but it has an image problem. You fix it by going totally overboard. You appeal to heart. You beg, borrow and steal from other categories. You are bold. You make that product differentiated and interesting. If your category is boring, you reframe your whole category. You do what you are supposed to do:

If advertising industry has identity problem right now, it is because we have lost our focus on making the brands we work with desirable. We have gone too deep in rabbit hole of championing social causes or doing unnecessary technological innovations, that we have forgotten why we exist in the first place.

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Anatomy of An Insight: Letgo Commercializer

Sometimes your biggest challenge for growth is not that people are not using your platform, but they are just using it wrong:

Insight: The challenge is not that people don´t have stuff to sell, but they don´t know how to sell that. The pictures look bad, there is not that much story behind the stuff and everything lacks enthusiasm. If you are marketplace where people can sell their old stuff this is naturally a problem. You want to make people better sellers so their stuff moves faster and they can sell even more stuff. More stuff equals more money to everyone.

Would you notice a used product ad featuring Dolph Lundgren?

I know that I would.

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Sequels Don´t Work in Advertising…Expect When They Work

I could not put the following ad to Anatomy of An Insight –section as it is a little bit too in a meta-level. I also have had too many Foot Locker ads featured in here in any case (although they are all pretty much awesome):

Brilliant ad nevertheless and based on equally great ad as well. Now the situation has naturally changed and the match will be happening. Or is it?

Sequels don´t work in advertising, when you just try to duplicate the success of previously successful ad. However if there is opportunity to continue the story and it is still based on strong insight and great idea, you should not change your focus too soon either. The most challenging part in advertising and life in general is to know when it is time to turn on a new leaf.

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Anatomy of An Insight: Rexona Social Experiment

I love doing work that is simple but insightful.

Too often we, as marketers, end up complicating things by weird marketing talk and creating irrelevant associations with our products that are not true. We just should try to be as authentic as possible and honest on what we do. Therefore the recent content series we have been doing with Rexona has been refreshing to do. It is all based on insight about the product and its need on our markets and nothing else.

This is the social experiment from Indonesia (don´t worry if your bahasa is a little bit rusty, you will get the idea):

Insight: People will not say to your face if you smell, but they talk about it behind your back.

The campaign is currently live in Indonesia and Brazil and has gained already over 1,5 million views.

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Anatomy of An Insight: Norwegian Airlines “The Flag of Flags”

The week filled with flying and airlines continues.

Having been part of the team doing Norwegian launch in Finland, I am delighted that there is still creativity behind the brand in Nordics. This  brilliant print ad comes from M&C Saatchi, Stockholm (probably the first print I have featured in here):


Insight: There are over six flags (Indonesia, Poland, Finland, France, Netherlands & Thailand) in the flag of Norway. Norwegian Airlines is Norwegian company (duh) and after 2013 they are also flying long haul to Thailand (European cities being short haul. What would be better way to showcase new flight discounts than put them inside the Norwegian flag?

Is this original idea?

Definitely not.

Is this a great advertisement?

Definitely yes. It has the element of surprise and delight that great advertisements have. Besides great creative hook it still does the hard sell as well. Although you would not get the trick of the ad, you would still get the fare destinations and discounts. This separates this particular ad from certain previous ads playing with flags inside flags.

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Anatomy of An Insight: Mulberry #WinChristmas

“The worst gift I was given is when I got out of rehab that Christmas; a bottle of wine. It was delicious.”
-Craig Ferguson

While John Lewis and Coke do the sentimental sugarcoated Christmas ads, it is Mulberry who does the most authentic and snarky Christmas ad. It is done by adam&eve, who have also done the John Lewis ads. This is a great manifestation that great agencies are not just one-trick ponies (or unicorns):

Insight: Christmas is a material holiday.

Yes, there is some religious aspect to it for those who are into those things.
Yes, it is nice to spend time with your family
Yes, it is awesome to eat all those weird Christmas foods you would not eat any other time of the year.

But, at the end of the day, the Christmas is about presents. It is unadulterated celebration of capitalism and consumption. Forget all “the thought behind the gift is what counts” –bullshit, the greatest gifts are well-known brands with good resale value. Actually based on the studies people appreciate more presents they have asked for instead of surprises. Like my good friend summarized it couple of Christmas ago:

“This year we should buy some proper presents and not any of those self-made ones”

 I have once bought Mulberry bag as a present and I have probably never gotten such a good response for a gift. Not even when I tried to top it up next year with unicorn.

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Anatomy of An Insight: Fartcode

If you are not even slightly entertained by flatulent humor, there is probably something wrong with your emotional state.

“You don’t have to be smart to laugh at farts, but you have to be stupid not to.”
Louis C.K.

Gas is always a blast for me, so not surprisingly this was highly entertaining:

Insight: Kids are not interested in nutritional value of food. Nutrition in food makes you fart. Fart equals fun. Educate kids through farts about the nutritional value of food. Get smart with your fart.

Nice touch on this app, combining utility and social sharing.

Only question with this brilliance is will it really appeal to kids (kids referring to anyone younger than me)?

The look & feel is actually more resembling an episode of Beavis & Butt-Head from 90´s and the song could have been lifted from the glory days of Epitaph records skate-punk.

Is it something that resonates more with us middle-aged kids than the real target audience?

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Great Insight: Balancing Between Obvious & Obscure

“In the advertising business,a good idea can inspire a great commercial.But a good insight can fuel a thousand ideas,a thousand commercials”
-Phil Dusenberry

No matter what anyone says, finding good & relevant insights is hard work. And I think it is getting more difficult all the time. The audience getting more & more fragmented, products been around longer, new medias emerging all the time etc. However in combination with audience behavior, they are still out there. You just have to work harder to find them.

Obvious-A Great InsightObscure
A great insight is not totally obvious. For example that women are the main decision makers in grocery retailing is hardly a groundbreaking insight. Or that men like beer. If you would found out that men contribute actually much to buying certain items in grocery stores, or you found common characteristics of the women who like beer, you might be onto something.

Pitfall of the obvious
: Everyone has already used it.Lacks to surpring and differentiation.
Pitfall of the obscure: It does not touch enough amount of target audience. Lacks the human and business relevance.

There is now shortcut or proven formula to find the insights. Probably every planner has its own method. I believe in combined “gut-instinct” and “rational deduction”. Usually the difference when winning pitches or doing groundbreaking stuff is that you are confident enough to trust your own point-of-view when doing final decisions. When checking for the strategy I usually try to tick the following boxes. These are not necessarily in order and you might not always need to check out all of these (although it would be preferable).

Insight Check-List
Simplicity: Is it simple enough? (Best insights are usually told in couple of sentences)
Surprise: Does it bring new angle to the category? Does it really help to differentiate us from the others.
Action: Does it make people to act (buy, share, try, comment, give their contact details, go to the store etc. This is especially crucial in digital campaigns)
Business relevance: Does it drive existing customers to buy more? Does it bring new business? (The best insights are those which tackle these challenges)
Human relevance: Does it reveal some human truth? Can people familiarize with the insight?
Brand: Does it benefit the brand in the long term? Is it in the brand?

And although it might seem that I only present sports brands in here, I have to share this nice little retail activation that Puma did. Especially strong in simplicity, action and business relevancy (got also Silver Lion in Cannes for Promo & Activation):

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