Why craft matters in advertising

Quiet Storm’s Trevor Robinson is President for the Industry Craft Jury at Cannes Lions this year. Here he examines how craft in advertising has changed in the digital age, but why it remains essential to creating emotional and effective campaigns

The role of craft in advertising today is what it has always been: to move people. It’s not just about something that looks good, a clever execution or using the latest tech for tech’s sake. It’s about eliciting the emotional response in an audience that is essential for any brand owner to achieve its business goal. In a world in which platforms are proliferating and lines between formats are blurring, working out what great craft is and quantifying it has never been harder.

In the old days, the value of ad craft could be judged according to whether it communicated effectively with a target audience at a human level, whether by doing so this drove sales, and – from a creative’s perspective – whether it was scary, by which I mean: original.