SPOS #327 – Bob Hoffman Is The Ad Contrarian

Posted by

Welcome to episode #327 of Six Pixels Of Separation – The Twist Image Podcast. When was the last time you read a non-fiction business book and laughed out loud? There have been instances where I have smiled, perhaps had an occasional chuckle. The last business book that really made me laugh out loud was Luke Sullivan‘s Hey Whipple, Squeeze This. I came to Bob Hoffman in a very different way. I had heard about this blog, The Ad Contrarian, for some time, but a headline in DigiDay really caught my attention. The article was called, The Ad Contrarian’s Reality Check. And, this is what Hoffman said: "The biggest myth is that the digital ad industry knows what the hell it’s talking about. Almost every ‘expert’ and ‘industry leader’ who has made predictions about digital advertising over the past 10 years has turned out to be wrong. They told us interactivity would make advertising more effective and engaging. It hasn’t. Consumers have shown no inclination to interact with online advertising. They told us traditional advertising was on the way out. Anyone who believes this must have slept through the Olympics. They told us that the DVR was going to devastate the effectiveness of TV advertising. Studies have shown it has had little to no effect on consumer purchasing behavior. They told us the PC and the television were going to converge. They haven’t. They have have had a parade of social media miracle cures that were going to ‘change everything’ — blogs, podcasts, widgets, YouTube, Facebook, games, Twitter, LinkedIn, FourSquare, Pinterest, QR codes and, of course, now content. Mostly they have turned out to be over-hyped, marginally-to-moderately effective marketing tools that have not been game-changers, as advertised. The digital ad industry is unreliable at best, and irresponsible at worst." Ouch. You can imagine how hungry I was for more. I reached out to Hoffman and asked if he would be a guest on the podcast. He agreed. I also bought both of his books, The Ad Contrarian and 101 Contrarian Ideas About Advertising. His books were sharp and hilariously funny. I may not always agree with everything Hoffman says, but his content is well worth digging into as his experience and expertise in the advertising industry cannot be denied. Ultimately, if you just want to laugh about how industry evolves, the books are worth the price of admission. Enjoy the conversation…


Here it is: Six Pixels Of Separation – The Twist Image Podcast – Episode #327 – Host: Mitch Joel.

Download the Podcast here: Six Pixels Of Separation – The Twist Image Podcast – Episode #327 – Host: Mitch Joel.


  1. of course you will disagree with him you need your clients!!!
    what do you disagree with and do you have evidence?

  2. Bob is a crack-up and ridiculously intelligent. I’ve also been screaming about this stuff for years. The URL I filled in above links to all my posts on the subject since 2006. Here’s a recent one about Twitter and Advertising: http://goo.gl/Iqk36

Comments are closed.