Chuck Porter’s nextMEDIA Keynote, a short Q&A and Brammo’s Enertia

What do you say to Chuck Porter the Co-chairman of arguably one of the most successful ad agencies in the US Crispin Porter + Bogusky? Soniya went over some of his keynote here. One myth he wanted to dispel that everything has changed because it really hasn’t he said people get bored so don’t waste the time they don’t have. You have to think global and be able to do it cheaper when you have to. Also surprise is better than consistency, what you do is even more important than what you say in the world of digital noise.

To Mr. Porter the best buzz was free buzz and that they use the 50 million person focus group that is the Internet. Traditional focus groups are skewed by their very nature and they don’t use them in evaluating creative because of this fact. Online you can test things quickly, can easily make mistakes and correct them which you can’t do in traditional media. Another myth was that the consumer was king. Chuck said in reality your message is just easier to ignore.

I asked Chuck Porter about how the campaign model needs to change in the new digital world and he said the traditional model was about an announcement to people and it still does some things well. The problem is that the new models are more engaging and are about conversation not an announcement. They allow advertisers to get more feedback and converse with people in ways that can’t be done on TV. For the mid-term the age of the television spot will continue but there will be “a zillion variations” due to online and its lack of time parameters like TV has.

Will the internet be integrated into television more like the way CNN uses twitter? Chuck said he doesn’t think anyone really knows. It will not be the media who will set the course of this change but the people. They will decide “what media they’re going to use, how they want to use it and the media will react to that.” The audience will be in control of how they consume media.

Chuck Porter and his cohorts have made CP+B a place that constantly innovates from their new site here that integrates social media to The Lead Designer Brian Wismann and ad guy Dave Schiff retraced the steps of the big 3 automotive companies took in their private plane to Washington when they asked for a bailout. They did this on Brammo’s 100% electric Enertia powercycle blogging and tweeting about it along the way. While they didn’t get to give the bike to the President they got close and were able to tell a great story to everyone they met.

This didn’t just launch the Enertia powercycle it became about the passion for what Brammo’s Enertia powercycles came to represent to the designers, the company and some of the agency people themselves. Alex Bogusky said on his blog “that this was a new real-time interactive campaign” that started in social media and was picked up by media in many small towns across the way.

This is the type of story where if you want others to participate as Alex says so do you. More of this is what will be needed to break through the noise and how digital and innovators like CP+B’s will continue to lead the way.


Brian Wismann