Wunderkind U is gathering for individuals in the advertising realm to connect in a salon type environment. This week, the topic of “Motion Picture & Advertising” came under the microscope. The main presenter Chilion Benedict, Strategist of Penguin Perspective took the stage to present his perspective of the current state of the industry and how important telling a story is in the communication of a brand campaign.
Chilion, began his presentation by giving his point-of-view about business, which are “under performing”. His belief is that there aren’t many companies who are challenging the status quo. But if companies come together, you can move the field forward to create a perspective shift. Through film and motion pictures can “little moments” lead to a world we haven’t seen before. Which can come in many forms: conversations, books, movies, etc.. Chilion sees himself as a “creator of these moments” and sees motion picture is an exciting form that can move the human heart.
He then turned the presentation to us and asked each of us to come up with a word that describes someone that we like, are attracted to, etc… As an inventive bunch we came up with some expressive words: creative, encouraging, inspirational, genuine, authentic, passionate, accepting, challenging, imaginative, and real.
Then he proposed the question: “Is this how organizations talk?” Which to me immediately resonated with no.
Next, Chilion presented the question: What happens when people walk into their towers?” To me, it’s the system, the bureaucratic red tape, the dilution of ideas to fit the norm, where people loose their passion and inspiration to think outside the box.
This led us to his realization is “The Appeal of Real”, which lead to him quoting Wahn Yoon’s latest blog post: “Truth can be more powerful than fiction if handled with emotional intelligence.”
So what does this mean for advertisers and consumers? Well, it means that one needs to have a sense of self awareness, they need to identify with what they are feeling, the subject matter needs to be empathetic and you need to exercise good social justice. In essence, emotional intelligence in communication is a sixth sense that very few can capture and achieve in a cinematic form. But what an advertiser has to be aware of is in not being manipulative. And making sure that you are not tricking the consumer and creating a negative effective to the outcome.
In the end, to create the appeal of “real” your intention has to express reality and has to speak from a voice that is moving not jaded. For example, in the movie Arrival, director Denis Villeneuve is able to evoke an emotion on multiple levels. The story of Louise Banks truly pulls at the heart strings. Meanwhile, the TV show Scandal on the other hand, really knows how to push your buttons, but doesn’t give you a sense of release after each episode.
So where does this leave us in terms of authenticity in advertising? In the end, advertising is about selling a produce and service. The “real” will always been manufactured to some degree. And it’s the consumer’s knowledge and emotions which will determine how well received the commercial will be. And in the end, if the product sales rise or fall.