Last week, a friend of mine told me something that shocked me. He said that Frank Sinatra wrote and sang “My Way” to describe his life before he died. He was of the belief that Frank really did “roll up in a big ball and die” the second the last lyrics left his mouth. He honestly believed this.
Well, well, well. What does this tell us about the audience we reach each day in our advertisements? To be quite honest, it tells us that a great deal of them are kind of … uh … well … stupid.
“My Way” was written by Paul Anka. It was made famous by Frank Sinatra long before he died. He, in fact, did not give his death rattle moments after delivering the final line. But, my friend still believes it. I talked about this a few months back when we discussed the “Illusion of Truth” phenomenon. It definitely applies here too. I’d just like to discuss it in a different light.
How does this apply to advertising?
Quite simply actually; It’s all about perception. People believe what they want to believe. Sometimes they form their own opinions in very personal ways. But, more often than not, opinions are formed subconsciously. These are obviously the smaller choices in life. Forming a political belief is a big decision. But, choosing to believe who makes the best “scotch guard” is unimportant. It often is relegated to the subconscious.
This makes things easy for us. Often just suggesting something in an influential way with a good amount of frequency will make people believe your message. They probably won’t even realize they’ve been influenced by your advertising. We see this all the time in radio. Clients want to know whether an ad is working or not. Unfortunately, customers almost never remember how they were influenced. Returning to my original point…
Just say it already!!!
You have something interesting to say. If you don’t, your business isn’t ready to advertise. I’d argue your business isn’t ready to be “doing business.”
One of the main questions I ask clients is “what is special about your company. What can you say that your competitors can’t?” I’m trying to discover that one interesting nugget of information that will tantalize the listening public. It’s much easier to make an effective advertisement when you have something truly engaging to deliver. I prefer it when it is “something your competitors can’t say.” But, to be brutally honest it just has to be “something your competitors aren’t saying.”
If you’re the first one on something, and you support it with good frequency, you will officially own the position. Everyone else may offer the exact same service. But, if the public doesn’t realize it, it doesn’t matter. That’s why it’s so important to identify what really matters to your average customer. It’s surprising what business owners miss in their own establishments. Usually, the interesting nugget of information is something they glaze over. It’s something simple, but overlooked.
What can you be saying that no-one else is saying?
Remember that you are an expert in your own industry. Your clients look to you for guidance. They don’t know what you know. What you think is obvious, is actually the opposite. Keep your message simple but powerful. Examine what you can establish as your cornerstone. Once you uncover that idea, everything else gets a lot easier. And, if you don’t have one, make one.
I’d be happy to help uncover, discover, or invent a reason for people to patronize your business. If you need a hand, head over to my contact page to send me a message.