After just a light breakfast at Creamy Dollops Cafe, a nice long think in my office with the blinds down and the light off, a brief 2-hour lunch at El Mexicaniac, a chat with Mandy Fookes about what colour suit I should buy next (blue, or other blue - it's a fucking tough one), an hour to tidy up my desk, a game of Hide Shit Alan's Stuff and a couple of doughnuts, I was on it.
My mother joined me to give me the benefit of her opinion. She's nearly target audience, so I trust her verdict almost totally. (Well, totally totally, in truth.)
Generally speaking, she thought the girls in the ads looked like 'the worst kind of Godless whores, worse than any other whore, the worst whores I've ever seen' and that the headlines were 'nonsense, just nonsense, just awful, poisonous nonsense' and, overall, 'they shouldn't ever be allowed before the eyes of the public - just think of the children, David'.
Then I told her that they were all my idea.
'Well, why didn't you say?' she said. 'I was being polite! It doesn't surprise me that this is your work, David, because it's something a dyslexic toddler with learning difficulties and a paedophile for a father would come up with. You've never been anything more than a walking catastrophe, David. Honestly. David. Oh, now come on. Come on, David. Stop crying. Stop it, you silly boy. Yes, mummy loves you. There, there. I know...I know. Dry your eyes. There we go. Mummy has to be honest, doesn't she? Or how will you ever know you're doing it wrong? Hmm? That's better. Now do it again, and take out all those nasty bits.'
She's harsh, the old girl, but she's nearly target audience - so what can you say?
I called the agency and told them the bad news. Unlike my old agency, the account director just said 'Sure! No problem!' and got on with it, even though my brief was possibly a little sketchy. (I think I said, 'Can you leave in the girls, and the headlines, but make them less whorish and less shit, respectively?')
He called back later to say the creatives were on the case. I think he was in the creative department because there was the usual mayhem going on! I even heard a couple of people shouting 'Go fuck yourself, you yes-man cunt!' in the background. They really are absolutely nuts, the scribblers!
So, there we go. The nearly target audience has spoken and I listened. That is my advice, fellow marketing professionals: always listen to your nearly target audience. And never, EVER, conduct research with more than one person. You'll just end up with lots of opinions you have to write down, instead of one. That's not effective management of your temporal resource. Remember: time is money. And my time is worth more than yours!
Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!