Chicago Sun-Times
Lewis Lazare follows Chicago media and marketing news

DDB/Chicago's big challenge: finding emotion for Budweiser

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Are there enough old-timers left at DDB/Chicago to get the job done? That was our first -- and most pressing thought -- when we heard that Anheuser-Busch is looking to produce more emotion-driven television advertising to try and boost flagging sales of its iconic Budweiser beer brand. Emotion-driven? Those middle-aged guys left in A-B's marketing department clearly don't talk much to the whippersnappers entrusted with creating most of the ads we see on TV today. These youngsters know how to crack a joke all right. At least a joke that smacks of snarky frat-house humor. But emotion-driven advertising? Come on guys! That requires a firm grasp of one skill that we're afraid is in dangerously short supply among the vast majority of young professionals in the advertising industry today. We're talking, of course, about storytelling -- crafting a gripping tale that engages the emotions in 60 seconds. Maybe less. It's not easy. The copy, visuals, music -- all have to coalesce just so to create a commerical with real emotional heft. This is what DDB/Chicago, A-B's lead agency on Budweiser, is now being asked to do. This would be the same DDB that for years has been driving its Bud Light punch line ad formula into the ground -- producing too many TV spots that were too often too dumb and unfunny. Now, suddenly, the agency is being asked to go all emotional. It's a tall order.

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Lewis Lazare has written the Media Mix column for the Chicago Sun-Times for the past seven and a half years.

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This page contains a single entry by Lewis Lazare published on May 11, 2009 10:58 AM.

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