The 100% factor

Why do agencies bang on about being single minded?

Well, it’s a little known fact that an ad/idea can only deliver a maximum of 100% effectiveness.

Seems a bit stingy doesn’t it?

Thing is,  your agency will tell you that if your concept aims to tell the world that your drug is super tolerable, then you should really be single minded about saying that.

Drug X is super tolerable.

Add in a nice idea, stir well and job done.

“Wait a minute Mr Beard and skinny jeans. The thing is, we’ve got more than one thing to say, okay so the main thing is super-tolerability but what about efficacy?….ooh and that new license coming in March? and our ‘commitment to tolerability’ statement”

Hmm…that stupid 100% rule does rather get in the way of that.

Drug X is super tolerable, efficacious and has a new license in March and we’re committed to tolerability!

“Great! now we have a 400% effective concept!”


Now you’re actually using 25% to say super tolerability, 25% to say efficacy and 25% about that new license and…oh you get it.

So it’s still only 100% then?

‘fraid so.


“Okay, so….so now…now….what if we make the headline a bit bigger to really push home the message of super tolerability but keep the other factors at 20%?”

Well, I have actually reached the outer limits of my mathematical skills but, at a guess, your main point is at 60%- at best.

“No…surely 140%??”

Um…well the thing is…remember the 100% factor?

Bloody ad agencies.

The problem with loading your concept with icons and multiple logos and subheads and bullet points and flashes and call to actions and website addresses, and corporate statements, is that they don’t add what you might think they add. Sometimes they support, if used judiciously, but mostly they subtract from what you thought was a single minded idea, simply by cluttering.

And even then, just saying it doesn’t always work.

Just because it’s right there in front of you doesn’t mean it’s getting through or motivating.

I mean, who fancies a cigarette right now?


The thing is, remembering ten things is harder than two things. And remembering two things is twice as hard as remembering one thing.

Even if you’re saying one thing, saying it twice doesn’t help.

Even if you’re saying one thing, saying it twice doesn’t help.

It’s just annoying.

So if you want your concept to deliver 110% it’s worth giving it 100% impact.

By being single minded.

Happy Easter everyone.




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