When I go out for dinner I might take five minutes over the menu.
When I want a pair of trainers I might mull over the options for a couple of weeks.
And when I see a film it might take me years to finally decide how much I like it.
But in all the creative reviews I’ve ever seen, the person doing the reviewing is expected to evaluate and give feedback on whatever they’ve seen in a matter of minutes, sometimes seconds. That’s right: the analysis of multi-million pound marketing efforts in abstract form often happens in the same amount of time it takes someone to decide on which chocolate bar they’re going to buy (TBH the chocolate bar decision is usually one that takes several hours, beginning from the moment the previous purchase has concluded).
Of course, there’s plenty of time after that to change the work, or even change the mind, but at least 90% of the ads I’ve shown, been shown, or watched being shown have elicited an opinion within ten minutes. And if it’s been condemned that decision is almost always final.
Yes, it’s the CD’s job to be able to work out what might or might not save or kill a business in such circumstances, but surely a little longer wouldn’t hurt. The occasions I’ve been sent work to chew over in my own time (within reason) have often been the most fruitful: I don’t just have longer to think over the quality of the work, I’m also able to spend more minutes, or even hours, on working out the advice that might lead to an improvement.
How often do you get complex decisions right first time, with ten people watching you, with so much hanging on the result?
DID YOU LIKE WHIPLASH? WHY? TELL ME NOW!
SHALL WE GET THE BUS OR THE TRAIN? ARE YOU SURE? HOW DO YOU KNOW?
CREME EGG OR TWIX? QUICK! CREME EGG OR FUCKING TWIX??????? GIVE ME FIVE GOOD REASONS!
I guess it must work to some degree, but couldn’t another way work better?