By: Daniel Sweeney On: October 15, 2012 In: Advertising & Marketing Comments: 0

As a fan of the long-suffering Fighting Gamecocks of South Carolina  and the perennial underachieving Atlanta Falcons, let me be the first to issue a message of condolence to my Duncan/Day and DFW brethren for the hit their Texas Longhorns and Dallas Cowboys fandom took this past weekend.

I’m at a loss for words on the Longhorns, but there is a silver lining to the Cowboys’ loss to the Ravens on Sunday – the lessons in risk-taking we can all take from the head Cowboy himself, Jason Garrett.

The former quarterback-turned-coach has caught much flak in recent years for his mismanagement in late-game scenarios – doing so in spectacular fashion yesterday in Baltimore. A 51-yard field goal to win the game? An Ivy League education should have taught you more about the dangers of playing it safe, Mr. Garrett.

While we don’t have playcalls and final scores in advertising and marketing, what we do have are creative strategies and goals to meet. In an industry where originality comes at a premium, creative risk-taking fosters a playing to win mentality, one that takes note of all tactics necessary to turn any campaign into a success.

Brilliant, but risky. That’s what two industry pros are calling Samsung’s latest campaign that clearly takes shots at Apple and iPhone. Is the attention Samsung’s campaign is generating worth the risk of upsetting Apple and goading a vitriolic response from the company?

“The advertising could spark an ad war that Samsung might be sorry it even started,” says John Ruf, managing partner and principal at the New England Consulting Group.

“For me, taking risks is incredibly difficult. With risk comes the possibility of failure, and I hate to fail. Yet I know that a successful agency must be a place where risky thinking can thrive,” remarks Meredith Vaughn in an Oct. 2011 post on Ad Age.

Whether it’s thinking outside the box for a catchy line of copy or going out on a limb with a new trend or medium (QR, augmented reality, etc.), taking calculated risks in advertising and marketing can the difference between a marginally successful campaign and one that takes a product or company beyond any forecast goals or benchmarks.

(H/T Dallas Morning News, Ad Age)