Lots has been written “attention” in advertising. Recently, I read a neat piece by Catherine Campbell of East Fork Pottery on LinkedIn where she suggests attention as too ephemeral — a social media phenomenon. She advances the idea that “consumer trust” is much more worthy as a goal than attention. Smart women. You can’t argue with her logic. But two things at the same time can be true.
For instance, take out-of-home billboard advertising, where you have about 5 words to make an impression. Back in the 90s when ads shrunk from pages to pixels, the units were more akin to billboards than traditional print ads — a tough time to be a creative person.
One way to get attention is to tell a consumer something they didn’t know. Or show them something they’ve haven’t seen. It sparks attention. If you pair that with a sales message you accomplish something. So, let’s not pooh-pooh attention.
I write a good deal about “We’re Here Advertising” which is little more than an announcement of what one sells and where to buy. This morning I listened to a local allergy doctor radio spot on the way to get coffee. You know what I learned? They treat allergies. All kinds: pet, plant, food, pollen, bad advertising…
When spending money advertising “tell me something I don’t know.” Work a little harder to prove why you’re worthy of a sale.
One of my favorite brand strategy claims, developed for an assisted living company in Westchester, NY, was “Average is the Enemy.” When I left the premises everyone on the marketing team had their assignment.
Pair attention with trustworthy and you can build a brand.