First in the Q&A series is Ivan Raszl. He has many years working experience in the advertising field, having previously worked in Hungary and Bahrain in positions as Graphic Designer, Packaging Designer, Art Director, Creative Director and General Manager. Now he works as an online business consultant and is the founder and editor of sites like Ads of the World, Brands of the World, CreativeBits and StockLogos.
Could you tell us a bit about yourself?
I was born in Hungary and lived in many parts of the world. I worked as an AD, CD and GM of my own agency. Currently I work as a consultant helping businesses to make money on the internet.
What do you most enjoy about advertising?
The ideas, the entertainment they bring. I also enjoy the problem solving thinking behind the campaigns. When I see a good campaign I frequently imagine myself getting the brief the creatives got and then marvel at the ingenuity of how well they solved the issue.
What makes a good advertisement?
I think there is no one thing. It needs to have several things. It needs creative strategy that can last for a couple of years across different media. It needs a good creative idea that makes the audience feel like they share a common value with the brand. At the same time it should bring something new to the table to make it attention worthy. It also needs to be executed with a good sense of style to make it not only intellectually but also visually engaging.
What is your general approach to create interest?
I assume the question refers to the first moments of engagement. Humans pay attention to things that either offer a reward or pose a risk to them. Therefore you can attract attention with sexy skin, fresh food, hidden treasure, etc. as a reward or you can scare people with a giant spider, blade in the dark, scary eyes, etc. All these can work. I don’t mean these literally. Visuals that do not show objects can act as triggers too.
What’s the most common misconception about being an advertiser?
I assume by advertiser we mean creative, not the client. Many think that creativity is something you’re either born with or not. I think creativity at most part can be learned. There is of course a difference between individuals but I think it’s relatively small.
What skills are most important for an advertiser?
Again hard to pick one. The three most important ones. Have brainstorming skills. Ability to think strategically. Sense of style to be able to judge good from bad.
And last, how should one become a great advertiser?
As with any profession, it takes time to perfect the craft. You need to keep working an learning for years. As I noticed one needs 3-4 years of working experience when suddenly he becomes good. It’s important to gain a lot of life experience. You need to build up your library of observations in your brain which you will use automatically when you need to come up with ideas. Also, it’s important to look at many other good and/or interesting in one way or another ads regularly. It wires your brain to think in terms of ideas. I noticed that creatives improve in their work tremendously after 8-10 month of exposure to a daily dose of creative ideas. Not because they copy existing ideas, but it helps their brains to use similar routes of thinking as other creatives came up with in the past.
In short, work hard, live life to the fullest and read AdsoftheWorld.com 🙂