Silence is Golden: Be Heard in the World of White Noise Marketing
Consumers are exposed to as many as 5,000 marketing messages per day. So it’s no wonder our senses have become accustomed to the blur of brightly coloured advertisements plastered on city surfaces and our screens. Each trying to shout louder than the other.
In the disarray of white noise marketing, silence has become a rare and almost luxurious commodity. There is rarely space in your house, on the street, or even in your own mind, that is entirely free of this noise.
The greatest concentration of marketing messages is usually found in the places consumers go to escape, such as entertainment and social media. But what function is this ‘noise’ actually serving, and are consumers even listening to it?
Those that shout loudest…
The sheer volume of the marketing messages we are exposed to on a daily basis inevitably requires heavy filtering. Which consequently renders a number of marketing material redundant. So, how can we cut through and ensure our message is heard? It may sound obvious, but giving consumers something they actually want to hear is a good place to start.
Put yourself in your customers’ shoes. People are not simply going to take their ‘medicine’ because you push it down their throat. After all, marketing is not just about selling, it’s about communication.
The power of persuasion
Native advertising, sponsored content, and product placement are some of the more recognisable responses to ad-blocking and consumer resistance. They offer a slightly less aggressive compromise between the content consumers want and the advertising marketers want them to engage with.
It is no surprise that social media has become the biggest driver for this type of marketing. Celebrity endorsements on Instagram for example, have created an avenue for marketers to persuade consumers to interact and identify with brands through the more convincing authority of iconic figures. When done well, this can instil a greater sense of intimacy, leaving a lasting impression and ultimately generating greater traction and brand credibility.
The Ad-Blocker advantage
Ad-blockers are emblematic of consumer attitudes towards the influx of banner and YouTube ads that plague the Internet. The unrelenting demand to draw consumer attention has created a vicious tug of war between media users and marketers.
Many brands have countered this problem by requiring users whitelist their sites to access content:
Although this approach may be effective for valued content, there is the danger that it will turn consumers away to competitors.
On the flip side, studies suggest that ad-blockers can work to some marketers’ advantage. In streamlining the Internet of other competitive ads, ad-blockers give greater advantage to marketing that can slip through the cracks, such as native advertising and product placement. Meaning ads that are seen will have more impact as a result of the reduced noise.
Play a different tune
Differentiation is one of the principle marketing concepts. Sometimes the most effective way to cut through the noise and be heard is to go against the grain.
Take TAC’s ads for example; the switch from blaring television commercials to a TAC ad is an apparent one. The dulled volume and sombre mood demands attention and draws focus to the actual message. This less is more approach by TAC has meant that many of these campaigns have left a lasting impression on Victorians and their driving habits.
Have the last word
Effective marketing requires a thorough understanding of the noise surrounding consumers. In the ongoing campaign to harness consumer attention it is important that marketers are aware not only of the noise they are competing against, but also the noise they are contributing to.