Sep 25 2007

We’re Right Up (Down?) There With Lawyers Now

We’re Right Up (Down?) There With Lawyers Now

I remember reading somewhere a while ago that the least respected professions in America were used car salesmen, politicians, and lawyers.  Well, step aside everyone — according to a J. Walter Thompson study reported in DMNews, only 14% of Americans have respect for people in the advertising business.  I’m going to include that anyone who works in marketing services, by extension.

Don’t get me wrong – I wouldn’t have expected people in the advertising profession to join the upper echelons of the study with military personnel, doctors, and teachers.  But 14% is a pretty low number.  Beneath that single number, though, lie some conflicting data.  For example,

· 72 percent agree, “I get tired of people trying to grab my attention and sell me stuff,” and

· 52 percent agree, “There’s too much advertising — I would support stricter limits.”

And yet

· 82 percent indicate a positive engagement with media overall, and

· Two-thirds claimed, “Advertising is an important part of the American culture.”

My bottom line from these data is simple.  You know something is wrong with your industry when 52% of the general population wants to regulate it.  But with the dual movements towards more free content and more restrictions on data that could be used to target advertising…I’m afraid our profession will continue to do the things that consumers don’t like for years to come.