Tuesday, 3 March 2015
Why Put Toilet Bleach on TV?
Why waste money advertising things that just aren't interesting?
These days people have a myriad of ways to tune out and turn off advertising for things that don't interest them. So there's a legitimate question to ask about the reasons for advertising the mundane.
This piece is effectively an extension of one of the thoughts behind my last post - why after all should consumers buy into things we don't buy into ourselves?
Sometimes it does have to be conceded that there are certain products and circumstances in which money spent on advertising is no longer worth the candle. It certainly may be the case that television is ceasing to be a worthwhile medium for more humdrum products. But that is not to say that advertising for them needs to be abandoned.
There is though a very important point here, which is that with TV ad effectiveness dropping, advertisers for less “sexy” products have to innovate a lot further than most to keep getting their message across.
This can manifest in highly creative art direction, which can act independently of TV and instead work with lower cost formats such as out of home or print (to further this point there are some great recent examples collated at trendhunter.com/slideshow/cleaning-product-ads). After all, in some ways the obvious solution to a less interesting product is to use your creativity to render it more interesting.
But equally, you can go what we might call the "Ogilvy" route, putting emphasis on facts and figures to drive home trust in products - and this is something that print and social media can do well, by capitalising on the higher dwell time and a broader scope for longer copy. Most especially with social media, that dwell time gives the opportunity to build a rapport with your audience, to build personal connections that just aren't possible in other media types. The power of that kind of personal connection is exactly the response we can give to those who would argue for the death of FMCG advertising.
The truth is that if so-called "boring" products can’t be advertised, nothing can. The heart of advertising is convincing people to buy into not only the product, but also the brand behind it, building a relationship between brand and customer. If the message is good, and the relationship is maintained, engagement will follow.
That is as applicable to toilet cleaner as it is to Toyotas.