As I write this I’m watching a baseball game currently in the fifth inning.  If you asked me right now who won, I wouldn’t have an answer.

This past weekend I built a long cedar planter box for my wife to use near the front of our house.  If she had come out in the middle of construction and asked how it turned out, I wouldn’t have an answer.

Asking about results in the middle of a campaign sometimes does make sense, of course.  If you commit to a 12-month ad campaign, it stands to reason that you should be able to evaluate early performance before the year is over.

But if your ad agency needs a month to build the creative, try asking them how the campaign is performing two weeks into that creative development process.  They won’t have an answer either.

There are campaigns you can evaluate early, and processes that need time to finish.  There are projects that show early signs of failure, and sometimes you do need to cut your losses.

But if you cut off a project in the middle of a designed process and ask if it was successful, I think you know the answer.

It’s important to know the difference.