“The basis of advertising is: You have to attract, you have to interest, and you can then get your message across. It’s in that sequence.” – L. Ron Hubbard
This sequence is often violated, when ads and commercials are trying to get their message across without first attracting the interest of the viewer. The result is that the ad or commercial isn’t even seen by the viewer, much less duplicated. How many times have we simply muted the TV or changed the channel when the commercials come on. Yet for some reason we are glued to the TV when the commercials during the Superbowl come on and we never seem to forget those commercials either. It is 1. Attract, 2. Interest and 3. Getting your message across.
You’ve probably seen this in ads all around us. But now look at an ad and ask yourself, “Did it attract my attention?” “Did it interest me?” “Did I get a message out of it?” When you can answer “yes” to all three questions, you can safely say it’s a good ad.
“’Shotgun marketing’ is marketing without any concentration on the actual marketing of any one individual product. Pushing everything all at once scatters the audience attention and weakens the impact of the individual items.” L. Ron Hubbard
This is another make-or-break datum in marketing and a mistake almost everyone makes who starts marketing his or her products. “More is better” is what they operate on, but in marketing this is a deadly sin. You market ONE product or service and get it to sell, then the next, then the next, etc. The effect will be that people will start to recognize your brand and your product, and you can use that recognition to put the next product on the market.
Nike has done this successfully by first starting out with popularizing their athletic shoes, and then tag an entire sports clothing line to it.
Here’s an example of shotgun marketing:
“RESPONSE is key to word here. Whether it’s in terms of services sold or commodities sold or communication or goodwill, it’s response that is the test of all promotion.” – L. Ron Hubbard
What is good response?
One of the most expensive commercials ever made was the 2003 Honda Accord “Cog” commercial. It’s a two-minute video that shows Honda Accord parts interacting with each other similar to a Rube Goldberg machine. It took 6 months to put together and was aired during the 2003 Brazilian Grand Prix to millions of viewers. Yet, only 10,000 people requested a brochure for the Accord that year. So even though it was an awesome ad, it didn’t get much response. Why? Because it was not a clear ad for a car. People want to see cars driving down country lanes or mountain roads, preferably with cool guys behind the wheel and gorgeous ladies next to them. They want to see the product in use and boost their own image with it.
Here’s an example of a great campaign. Doritos changed how everyone looked at Super Bowl ads when it asked its consumers to submit their ideas. By counting on their fan base to create their ads, Doritos secured the “attracting interest” part and whether or not Doritos commercials were the best each year, they were the best marketing innovation fueled by user content. On top of that, their famous “dog eats cat” ad cost $1 (the price of a bag of Doritos), went viral and Doritos secured a top position in Super Bowl advertising.
What you’ve seen so far is a virtual tip of the marketing iceberg. There’s so much more to know about the subject. Stay tuned for part 4 in this series on Marketing, “Marketing Exchange”.