Perspectives

Storytelling is the Backbone of Advertising Regardless the Delivery System


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Authenticity and great storytelling combine to form the backbone of good advertising, according to advertising expert Chuck Borghese.
Borghese is an award-winning veteran of the creative side of advertising having spent nearly four decades in the business and charting its changes over time.
He notes that in the days of Mad Men advertising executives, up through the early 1960’s, that most advertising was based on “authority.” The advertisers, according to Borghese, told consumers what they wanted and even down to dictating the colors that would be most popular.
Beginning in the mid 1960’s until now, he claims that most effective advertising is being based on “authenticity.” He says that this is especially true in the era of heightened social media. If a product is not authentic or the message is not accurate, people on social media will be talking about it immediately. Social media can destroy an advertising campaign in a heartbeat, Borghese says.
No matter how advertising messages are delivered in the “Digital Age”, Borghese says that the need for relatable storytelling will never change. He notes the heart of effective advertising is to tell a great story that connects with the potential consumer.
Advertising is really becoming more like public relations, according to Borghese, meaning that stories need to be tailored specifically to the needs of the consumers.
He notes that when information about a certain product that the user looked at online follows that user to almost every site the user visits, it can be considered badgering by the potential consumer. However, if the product is connected to a story that resonates with the Internet user, then the messages, no matter how many, have greater value and will become more effective.
Although the delivery systems for advertising are changing at breakneck speed, the core for advertising agencies success is how they mesh the product with the needs or desires of the consumer in an authentic and not a fabricated way.
If advertisers can do that then they will be successful whether its 2017 or 2025, Borghese predicts.
Borghese started his advertising career in Detroit where he managed the campaigns of large consumer brands. He then became creative director at Ogilvy and Mather in Atlanta. His next move was to go to New York City where he worked for two agencies, topping his career at DDB agency working for one of the pioneers of authentic creative advertising Bill Bernbach.
Borghese currently is a guest lecturer in Strategic Communication in the E. W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University and also is continuing his career with a new worldwide advertising agency.