There were two responses
[Letters, Nov. 1] to the excerpt of my forthcoming book, Another One Bites the Grass [Adweek, Oct. 4], to which I would like to reply.
First, let me reassure Tom Cammarata I do go on to define cultural mapping in some detail, but not in the chapter that was picked for the Adweek excerpt. And yes, it's true that in the Adweek excerpt, I dwell on cultural particulars, but most of the second half of the book deals with identifying and using cultural universals in advertising. My overriding attitude is most certainly not that "Brits are somehow more culturally adept at being creative in this country than Yanks." I am critical of British attitudes throughout the book.
In response to John Jaeckel's letter, let me add that my book is not based on the simplistic message that "great advertising in one language doesn't always translate to another language." As later chapters will show, I'm actually in complete agreement, as Mr. Jaeckel elegantly puts it, that "the most powerful language of all [is] the powerful emotional language that all of us, as human beings, understand immediately." Finding out how to access and make use of this "powerful language" is what my book is all about.
Let Your Fingers Do The Walking
In refuting the 4A's position that its planned Web-based "neutral" database of advertising information will serve as an effective resource, Skip Pile noted, "It won't be used any more than a homeowner would choose an architect to design an addition to his home from the Yellow Pages" [Art & Commerce, Nov. 1].
Seizing on Mr. Pile's analogy, how about a few facts that support the idea that people do indeed use the Yellow Pages. In 1998, according to SRI usage research numbers, there were 8 million annual references to the "Architects" heading in the Yellow Pages. Of those, 37 percent had no name in mind, 52 percent were shopping, 63 percent made a contact and 75 percent intended to or made an appointment. The heading ranked 147th in directory usage and has shown increased annual usage since 1992.
Interestingly, people also select ad agencies from the Yellow Pages. Last year, more than 10 million consulted the "Advertising Agencies" heading, and a substantial number contacted 4A's-identified shops.
Wahlstrom & Co.,