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Advertising for People Who Don't Like Advertising

Amsterdam's creative communications agency tells it straight in a new book

by Karen Day in Design on 06 April 2012

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In their new book "Advertising for People Who Don't Like Advertising", the Amsterdam-based communications agency KesselsKramer details the creative side of an industry often considered devilish, making a valid claim that like sex, advertising is "only as warped as the people involved."

Written in a cheeky, conversational tone, the book imparts some sage advice on how to conduct responsible advertising. Established in 1996, KesselsKramer pioneered the movement for inspirational multidisciplinary campaigns that don't think like traditional advertising—instead they engage an audience and encourage interaction with a product. In other words, what they call "Open source over hard sell."

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In addition to showing examples of their own work—such as the brilliantly honest "anti-advertising" campaign for Brinker's budget hotel—the KK team asked top creatives to discuss how they ultimately stay creative in a client-is-right, money-obsessed field. Weighing in with refreshingly candid takes are Alex Bogusky, Stefan Sagmeister, Steve Henry.

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KK's longstanding creative director Erik Kessels puts things into neat perspective in a chapter called "The Laws of Creativity and How to Mess With Them", offering snippets with intriguing and sometimes provocative titles like "Make News Not Ads", "Follow Not The Process of Others", "Never Brainstorm" and more.

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Kramer's rebellious approach to design and creative, responsible advertising—or, communications as KK calls it—helps inject a little confidence in the future of quality brand messaging. The book is out May 2012, and is available for pre-order from Amazon or Laurence King.

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