What are advertisers thinking?

  • Feb 10, 2009

Really, don't you wonder sometimes? We've just experienced the biggest (or at least most expensive) advertising blitz of the year - the Super Bowl. Brand awareness is the main objective of most of the ads. At $3 million for a 30-second ad this year, few but the largest and best-known brands in the world can afford this exposure. 100 million sets of eyeballs are expected to see the game, and unlike the usual TV behavior, most actually WANT to see the commercials. The Wall Street Journal was predicting that more of this year's crop of commercials would actually try to directly SELL SOMETHING, but if you were watching last night, you probably remember the entertainment factor most.

The advertising industry uses the term “impression” to refer to the number of times an ad is “experienced”, usually via sight or hearing. The implication is that after enough “impressions”, the advertiser is (theoretically) remembered. But don't forget, humans have 5 senses. TV advertising tends to be the most expensive form of advertising because it entails 2 of the senses, sight and hearing, in order to promote a brand. A drinkware item, by itself, entails touch and sight. It also allows someone to experience taste and smell at the same time when it is filled with a beverage that the recipient has chosen to use it for. So, in effect, a drinkware item delivers its “impression” 4 times faster than a normal, single-sense ad does.

The most expensive advertising in the world is done for the Super Bowl

In December, we reported on a new survey that showed promotional products to have the lowest cost per impression of any type of advertising. That survey didn't even take into account this multiple-sense consideration. In this current economy, with so many minds focused on tight budgets, cost-per-impression is an important factor in advertising decisions. But this is a time when we need to go beyond that. So what's the more important factor?

EFFECTIVENESS! That's what advertisers often fail to focus on. Think of all those Super Bowl advertisers who spent the big bucks, but simply entertained you without leaving you any more inclined to buy their product! Something that you give away with your name on it could be just as big a waste. There's a huge difference between a giveaway and a promotion. Selecting the right product is important, but just a piece of the overall strategy that is needed to make an effective promotion. If you want your target audience to actually DO SOMETHING, call us for some new ideas. Then you'll see what effectiveness means.

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