Is your brand suffering from Attention Deficit Consumer Disorder? It’s not them, it’s your ads.
Two contributing authors to MediaPost, an online and print resource for all things advertising, have engaged in a debate over the state of advertising today (links to the back-and-forth are at the end of this post). It all started with an article by Joe Marchese called “Advertising Is NOT Content”. Joe’s point is that advertising is becoming a “consumer’s choice”. Offered technology like Tivo and DVR options which allows purchasers to skip ads, we’re also embracing this option across a variety of other platforms – Pandora upgrade, anyone?
The attention economy, he explains, is changing the dynamic of advertising. No longer will consumers sit idly and be subjected to ads, nay!, advertisers must demonstrate that the ad is worth the consumer’s time. “Good” advertising and “bad” advertising are subjective and “largely irrelevant” he states. Hmmm…irrelevant? Not really.
Where attention economics views human attention as a scarce commodity, thanks to our over-exposure to information, relevancy helps to bring it back into focus. The difference between a “good” ad and a “bad” ad starts when it becomes immediately boring and irrelevant. Consumers don’t want to be barraged by ads that mean nothing to them – ads that offer neither information or entertainment are annoying and frustrating. This is why we’re skipping ads – we don’t want to be served mediocrity.
And isn’t this the real issue here? Poor advertising content. Engage us, please!
Some consumers will pay to avoid ads, and some will put up with a few commercials – but eventually everyone is a consumer and we all want to make informed choices. Brands need to be ready to engage that consumer in the ways that they seek product knowledge; know your audience, know your demographic, and understand the mediums – however they are evolving.