There’s a lot of pressure in the advertising world to think big. Agencies compete for “big” clients, who in turn want big ideas for big returns in the form of increased customer awareness, sales and profit. Type “think big advertising” into your Google search bar and you’ll score no less than 165 million hits. The “big” mentality can be intoxicating, with its attendant rushes of adrenaline, awards and acclaim. But merely thinking big can leave some important things behind in the dust—things like integrity, loyalty and just plain human decency.
In their book The Power of Small: Why Little Things Make All the Difference, Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robin Koval talk about how focusing on the details yields big results. They know whereof they speak. Their agency, The Kaplan Thaler Group, started as a two-woman ad firm with a single Clairol Herbal Essences account and grew to renown as the creator of the ubiquitous Aflac duck. An excerpt from the inside front cover flap captures the flavor of the book: “Our smallest actions and gestures often have an outsized impact on our biggest goals… Going that extra inch—whether with a client, customer, family member or friend—speaks volumes to others about our talent, personality and motivations.” Read the rest of this entry »