The other day I had the privilege of listening to a lecture by Kevin Roberts, CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi.
Roberts linked a series of propositions to create an argument that goes like this.
1) “Brands were invented for one reason only: to charge a premium; a higher price, a higher margin.”
2) Creating an emotional connection with the consumer is “bigger and better than more quality, more value. These table stakes aren’t enough”
3) 85% of human decisions are made emotionally, not rationally.
4) “Great communication works inherently at an emotional level”
5) “The only point of advertising is to drive people to do something”.
6) So the role of marketer is to do great communication that works at an emotional level, to create a ‘lovemark’ which “inspires loyalty beyond reason. That is where the money is. Beyond price. Beyond benefit. Beyond attribute. Beyond logo.”
In other words, the role of the marketer is to ‘drive’ people to 'love' you so much that they no longer use their reason and hand over loads more cash to you – more than if they still had the use of their reason. And you do this by emotional advertising.
Never mind the fact that each one of these six propositions is flawed in its own right. Look at the instrumental, self-seeking motives. Look at the attitudes it displays towards people – ‘the consumer’.
Kevin Roberts’ arguments sum up everything that is wrong with marketing today.