On Wednesdays, we look at artist statements or design philosophy statements and discuss the best vocabulary to describe an artwork or design. Today we’ll look at the About page for the ad agency Goodby, Silverstein & Partners. They created the upcoming Super Bowl ad campaign for Doritos Blaze vs. Mountain Dew Ice.

This is from the About page for the GS&P website:

We are a creative company that puts people at the center of everything we do. We work with both clients and consumers in an atmosphere of honesty and truth, wiping away preconceptions and learning together.  

Our mission is to create experiences that reach millions and even billions but seem to speak only to you. We call this effect mass intimacy.

The smarter, braver work that results from this approach brings people closer to our clients’ businesses, gets them to care, and urges them to take action. Because great work is only great if it reaps results.

In the first paragraph, they say that they put people at the center of everything we do. This is another way to say that they feel people are the most important part of everything they do. Next, they say: We work with both clients and consumers in an atmosphere of honesty and truth, wiping away preconceptions and learning together. This sounds very nice because honesty and truth are virtues, and I can believe that maybe they are very honest and truthful with their clients, but the consumers? The purpose of advertising is to get consumers to buy things, not to be honest and truthful. It sounds a little too good to be true, but that is how advertising works its magic on us. They are using the power of effective advertising to sell us on their services. Clever.

In the next paragraph, they talk about their mission. Again, they talk about experiences and a sense of intimacy, but of course, in reality, they are trying to sell products. No one wants to feel like a fool or like they got talked into buying something they don’t need. However, if you feel that you are part of an experience, or that a product is designed just for you, it will be more appealing.

In the final paragraph, they describe their work as smarter and braver. Again, these are very positive words, but what do they really mean by braver? How is advertising brave, unless you are tackling difficult or controversial issues to make the world a better place? Perhaps they do this with other clients, but I’m not sure what’s brave about selling chips and soda during the Super Bowl. They also talk about how great work gets results. Again, this may be more related to some of their other clients, like the Ad Council’s anti-bullying campaign. You can see examples of these on their Do Good page.

I think this About page is very appealing, as good advertising should be. It may focus more on their altruistic motivations than is totally believable, but that’s what sells. At the end of the day, most people just want to watch a rap battle with Peter Dinklage and Morgan Freeman.

What do you think of this ad and the about page? Do you agree with my comments? Do you have questions about the vocabulary? Do you want to suggest a piece for me to discuss next week? Leave a comment below!

I’ve chosen 5 words or phrases for you to focus on today.  They are in bold.  If you don’t know them, look up the meaning, synonyms, antonyms, and other forms of these words. You can find links to Merriam-Webster dictionary sites at the bottom of this page.

To see the original post from Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, click the link below: