Same Same But Different
BMW EVolve

Reverse the Polarity

Tweets in Posters

For the less geeky among you, 'reversing the polarity' is a deus ex machina device commonly deployed in Star Trek, Doctor Who and other sci-fi, especially where forcefields and advanced energy drives are common. 

It's the last minute solution that always solves problems - because, for some reason, future technology works better when you route the flow through it backwards. 

For a while now we've

[you and I, not the royal we]

been talking about low latency advertising - work that responds to actions in one part of the media system in other parts of that system, in approaching real time.

I wrote a report thing for Canvas8 called Media is One System about this - the [especially digital] mediascape is a single system of inter-operating elements.

[The title was very loosely inspired by the Squarepusher alubum Music Is Rotted One Note

[The site has a paywall so here's a pdf  Download C8-media-is-one-system, should you be interested] 

Since then, well, Kraft turned a tweet into a TV spot in a day

It's not just the speed - the low latency aspect that's interesting. 


In Jon Steel's excellent book Truth, Lies and Advertising, he relates the tale of Goodby's campaign for Chevy's Mexican restaurants. 

They had a line "Fresh Mex" that GS&P brought to life by shooting ads and getting them on air the same day.

This was in 1991.] 

It's the aspiration through using, doing things with, real people power of endorsement thing.

Tweets are appearing in ads all over the place.

Which is part of what I mean by reversing the polarity. 

Informing broadcast with social, rather than looking at the social activation of broadcast. 

Embracing real people real stuff real tweets.

Increasingly, I suspect, broadcast will be used to reflect what is happening in other parts of the media system.


because people like being listened to [appreciation]

because people believe other people [endorsement] 

because one of the reasons people will engage with brands is to acquire fame [fame] 

because the system allows it, and what can be done, should be tried [experimentation] 

because, like social tv, it brings salience and real-time relevance to a timeshifted, fragmented medium [cut-through]

because it reflects how people are consuming media, watching tv and being online at the same time, tweeting and that [media design]

because, as I've said before, the new model of marketing is to do stuff FOR people and then tell everyone else about it with advertising [solutions, not propositions]

Which is the other part of what I mean by reversing the polarity.

Advertising used to tell you how brands could solve your problems.

Now it solves problems and tells you about it, because everyone gets how products work.