Friday, April 17, 2009

Mies in Reverse

We were talking with a magazine art director pal of ours this morning about how so often clients and advertisers want to put so much stuff in their ads.

I certainly don't agree with it, but I do kind of get where this thinking comes from if it's a small business owner who is spending his or her own money. They think they have to protect their investment by getting every possible thing in that print or broadcast real estate they paid for. They don't want to leave anything out that they think might make the sale. What they don't realize is that by putting so much stuff in the ad, they actually make it less effective. The concept of "everything in an ad devalues everything else in it" is not always easy for them to understand.

It's gotta be "Call today for a free-no-obligation estimate in your own personal home by our trained estimators", or the phone number is repeated three times in a radio spot or they want to show a selection of lovely, but teeny and only-distracts-from-the-main-message thumbnail shots of their rooms, golf course, spa and restaurants. That kind of stuff.

Mies van der Rohe adopted the motto "Less is more" which really, no kidding, honest-to-God nails it.

Then again, so does the reverse. "More is less."

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