It’s a new year! We’re looking forward to the latest in virtual reality and augmented reality, anticipating advancements to the Internet of Things. But, really, no amount of dazzle beats the basics, the ABCs and 123s. With that in mind, we want to steer back to the fundamentals of creating successful ads.
1. Tee it up. Viewers want to relate to your ad. They want to pull from their experiences, their memories to connect your advertising to something that is relevant to their lives. Establish the situational context early to put viewers in the right frame of mind. This Progesso ad, which begins with a view of ingredients stacked on the cutting board next to a pot of broth cooking on the stove, wastes no time in setting the stage for a savory soup.
2. Don’t bury the lead. “New” is a lead. Thousands of new products are launched each year, but many fail simply because the “new” gets hidden instead of highlighted. When you can say “new,” shout it from the rooftops. A strongly proclaimed “new” works to motivate consumers in ways other messages cannot.
3. Maintain focus. We’ve said it before; we’ll say it again. We just can’t say it enough. Single-minded messaging is a must. Advertisers too often want to tell consumers about all of the features and benefits their product or service provides. However, instead of enticing the consumer, this approach frequently does the opposite. Too much information can be confusing and distract from what’s really important. Keep your message on point (like this Hershey’s ad does) and your ad will work harder to engage and motivate your customers.
4. Say it and show it. You’re already competing with the phone, laptop, kids, dogs, etc., for viewer attention. When visuals are out of sync with the audio, it becomes hard for viewers to catch up or keep up. Viewers have no trouble keeping up with this Neutrogena commercial for makeup remover. Kerry Washington’s voiceover is timed perfectly with the visual effects, from her full make-up look to her fresh 99% make-up free face to the on-screen text.
5. Take advantage of virtual consumption. Advertisers understood this concept even before virtual reality was a figment in the “Father of PlayStation” Ken Kutaragi’s, imagination. When we watch someone interacting with or enjoying a product, our mirror neurons kick in and we envision ourselves interacting with the product in the same way. Any moment that puts the viewer in this state of “virtual consumption” will effectively create desire for your product. This Pillsbury ad contains several tactile images that puts the viewer in the moment of enjoying the products, from opening the package to placing the biscuits on the tray to icing the cinnamon rolls. And don’t forget to connect the “bite” to the “smile” to complete the experience in the mind of the viewer.
Anyone can entertain the audience with an array of dazzle and pizazz, but the basics are what work to create those branded, motivating moments. As you move your advertising plans forward to reach your 2017 goals, remember your ABCs and 123s!