This observation comes from Mr M. D. Esq, but it’s a darn good one, so I thought I’d give it a wider audience.
Certain ads from certain agencies are given a kinder shake of the whip than certain other ads form certain other agencies.
No need to mention specific examples here, but I think we can all come up with a few instances where the agency name or client logo can give an ad a big lift or kill it dead.
Actually, sod it; here’s an example:
That Toshiba spot was well received, but I’ll bet it would have been far better received if it had been done by BBH or Fallon than by its actual agency, Grey. There’s an inbuilt quality check that makes you think that if Nick Gill or Richard Flintham thought it was worth putting out, then it must be good.
The comparison Mr M. D. Esq made was with clothes. Like an ad, the quality of a shirt is a matter of individual taste, and therefore debate. Some ads and shirts are more obviously better than others, but if you have the Paul Smith/Prada/Alexander McQueen label tucked away inside, you can feel much more confident that your piece of cloth is better than the next man’s.
However, we all know that those clothes labels (and, more often, Gucci, Versace and Dolce and Gabbana) are capable of occasional poo, as is every agency in the world, even the very best.
I guess this permeates every art form. Is it a Dylan track? A Scorsese movie? An Amis novel? Not a guarantee of genius, but close enough to act as a kind of force field against criticism.
And no, it’s not fair, but those good shops seem to have earned the right to the benefit of the doubt because of a legacy of quality.
And if Grey produce 10 years of brilliant work, they’ll have earned it, too.