How many times have you watched a television commercial that made you laugh uncontrollably, sing-along out loud to the catchy jingle, or have you mesmerized at the incredible stunt performance; all to forget the brand or product being promoted just minutes later?
Often times, this phenomenon of clever entertainment features short-term audience satisfaction without any measureable returns for success of the advertisement. Believe it or not, many brands have mistakenly produced entertaining ads and have neglected to achieve the real goal of turning their promotion into increasing business.
So congratulations, you momentarily broke through the marketing clutter. However, do not assume that the call to action is just to “watch” or “listen.” A really great ad can do much more than that. Your ad means nothing if it confuses the target audience and has no noticeable way to convert him/her into a customer. After seeing a dwindling marketing budget from ineffective advertising, you are going to desperately need more customers bringing business to you.
Ultimately you want to grow your business, whether it is through more sales, calls, email subscriptions, foot and/or website traffic. Strategically focus your ad and think about ‘what do you want people who see this ad to do immediately.’
1. Make the call to action simple, easy and noticeable. Be clear on what you want your target audience to do and how it really supports your brands goals.
2. Use different message formats for different media and technology. Facebook is great for deals, promo and engagement, while print ads are good for reinforcing your brand and providing a little more depth to a product or product line. Test your message to see which ones work best for certain platforms.
3. Experiment with purpose. Marketers are always attempting to fill spaces others haven’t thought of. Although it’s rare to find one that no one has thought about, there could be missed opportunities on spaces less used, like advertising in urinals or stalls. Be open to new forms of marketing while still being effective.
There is no real cookie-cutter way to cut through the marketing clutter. Now you must evaluate. Is your advertising effective or just entertaining? We all like a little entertainment in our lives, but sometimes it is good to be able to remember who provided it!
Aneva Matthews is a Graphic Designer at Marketing Matters (www.marketingmatters.net), a communications and design firm specializing in technology, consumer and custom electronics, audio-video and related industries.