Last night I had the misfortune of watching ‘free to air’ television. I say misfortune because while the program was entertaining enough, one particular advertisement left me wanting to throw my ‘Crownie’ at my set and strangle the cat.
Not content with a mumbo jumbo of technical information, the ad was filled with red lines chasing each other while someone told me how my computer could be protected from everything, including pneumonia and the flu. I exaggerate; but it felt that way.
It was boring as bat excrement and, worse, they played it at every one of their numerous ad breaks – sometimes twice in one session. Talk about water torture! It wasn’t a locally made ad – no, it was made in the land where diets and portion sizes are as unhealthy as their Presidents.
Speaking of which, Trump would have you believe “if you tell them enough times, they’re gonna believe you.” Not quite, ‘Commander in Cheat’ – us Aussies are not so gullible.
It begs the question: if it annoys people so much why do it? Good question. I don’t have the answer, but I do have a solution.
First, it’s important to understand that frequency doesn’t mean ‘all the time’. Frequency means just enough – enough to keep people interested and, importantly, being shown at differing times.
That alone is not a solution. What people really respond to is stories.
A journey, an adventure, a little example of magic, or simple tales of others. Sometimes obvious, other times obscure. Tales that are beautifully threaded together with creative ideas, copy that manufactures dreams, silky moments which make us smile, that warm our hearts and bind us to the brand and the product.
It’s not that difficult. Storytelling is age old – from Hans Christian Anderson to Walt Disney, they all knew the secret to people’s hearts.
That is the solution. No matter how big or small your company is, start thinking with your heart instead of your head. Link your product, your service, your brand with dreams and stop believing that everyone’s idea of delivering the facts is the only successful way to communicate.
Advertising is not an icy cold business. It’s about telling a story – your story.