Creatives, Marketers, new media and the future?


Would the new creatives please stand up?

So, Coca-Cola has chopped some of its traditional advertising budget in order to make way for social media. What does this mean for you and me and the rest of the creative world?

It means times are changing and skills need to change as well. The big corporates have seen the importance of social media and the rest of the world will follow suit. Being just a designer will not help anymore. Being a web designer won’t get you any further any more. Now, it’s about ideas. Don’t get me wrong, traditional media still plays a huge role, but the landscape has been widened and new skills are being sourced.

What skills?

The ‘regurgitating designer’ will now be pointless. Social media is so vast that conceptual creatives have to now come to the forefront. You need to ask yourself: ‘What does our Twitter page have to say about us? What can we implement that will make our blog an experience like no other?’ These are questions that will require input from the creative, after all, that’s what they want creativity.

Basically, what I’m saying is that a combination of technical and conceptual is vital in the future of creativity. I’m talking about a new kind of conceptual thinker. One that knows and lives the digital space. Someone who understands the online world’s behaviour and trends. Online media is extremely cluttered, and bland work will not do.

So, you’re probably wondering why really badly-shot videos become viral?

That’s my point exactly; we’ve seen so much good quality work that when we see badly shot stuff, it becomes unique once again. This is a lesson that we, as creatives, have to take into consideration. We have to ‘unknow what we know’ in order to churn out fresh material. Companies like Adidas have been known to use material from the average person on the street for a shot of fresh originality.

What about the marketers?

Marketers have an advantage as they have been trained in traditional marketing and are currently learning about social media. That said, I also think marketers should n’t simply eat up the “ready-made“ social media strategies that we see every day. I’m no marketer, but I believe that they too should ‘unknow what they know’.

What then?

Creatives need to pick up a marketing book, and start understanding what the consumer is. They need to also have the edge that marketers have. I strongly believe that the future creative will be one with marketing skills. If I was hiring, I’d hire someone with a blend of social marketing and design skills.

Creative Director. Founder of The SA Creatives. Designer, fine artist, writer, photographer & idea hunter. Arch enemy of Powerpoint. @artwelln


  • Reply October 28, 2011


    Too true for the current changes happening in marketing; but I personally believe that this is a transitionary period where traditional advertising is basically throwing whatever they can at the “social media” wall and seeing if anything sticks. I don’t think that the blogosphere or viral advertising is the true path forward; I don’t think it is a proven vehicle for better branding and ultimately sales. I don’t think you can call sourcing badly made “street” video a new advertising standard for creatives to take note of. All that has happened is that the means of putting your own voice out there has become inexpensive and immediate and therefore completely without any requirement for standards or skills. It doesn’t take a talented creative videographer to make a viral clip on youTube.
    I liken it to the late 70’s punk rock explosion where young people were so sick of rubbish pop/rock and the whole disco glitter aesthetic that they went to the other extreme; they did not create great music or even music that was mildly memorable (save a meagre few); but they swept aside the past and made way for a new era of creativity. But ultimately the creative, the skilled, the clever and the original will always float to the top.
    At the end of the day, creativity, originality, skill and hard work will always serve you well – no matter what the crowd are shouting. I personally think the “next big thing” in marketing / branding / advertising is yet to come…….exciting times ahead!

    • Reply October 28, 2011

      Artwell Nwaila

      Good point. What I’m saying in the ‘bad videos example’ is that agencies can no longer just buy awareness, they have to earn it, and compete with a 14 year old tech kid. These shoddy videos are popping up everywhere and are going viral because they have something that attracts a large audience and interest. This is what the creative and marketer need to figure out and implement in their digital strategies. Not to say that we must shoot bad videos to go viral.

      I completely agree that the “next big thing” in marketing / branding / advertising is yet to come!
      very exciting

      Why don’t you think the blogosphere or viral advertising is the true path forward? Id like to hear your views and possibly write about it

      • Reply October 28, 2011


        I’m on the same page as you here. Agree completely.
        I feel strongly that corporate brand strategy is not, by it’s very nature, Social Network relevant because it is not authentic and organic in the way it implants itself in these arenas; and social networks are in essence spontaneous, organic and authentic. Corporates wanting in on social networking is like your granny wanting to go out with you and your mates for a night on the town. She will stick out like a sore thumb and will make everyone mind their P’s and Q’s and probably go home early, or even worse – plan a secret rendezvous that excludes you and grandma : (

        • Reply October 28, 2011

          Artwell Nwaila

          Ha ha ha ha
          Would you mind sending a me your email address to .I would like to write more about your views on this issue and see what everyone else has to say. I know you will have some challengers out there.

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