ADD is a global phenomena. It's not limited to the US and advanced western economies. People around the globe are overwhelmed with information and advertising and are awash in choices. Whether it's a the beer store, the supermarket or on the TV, global consumers have more options today then even one year ago.
The causes of ADD are many. We can point to the proliferation of texting and twitter for example. We communicate with 140-160 character messages that would make english teachers cringe. Our verbal vocabulary has expanded to include "words" like OMG, LOL, . These acronyms have even entered into our verbal conversations.
What does this mean for marketers in the 21st century? The answer is what I call “billboard marketing”.
“I would have written you a shorter letter if I had more time”
This quote in various versions has been attributed to Twain, Cicero and Voltaire. It doesn’t matter who actually said it first. What matters is it defines the role of marketeers today.
To get your message across to overwhelmed consumers requires marketeers to sharpen their pencils and spend the time to write the shortest letter possible. These “letters”, whether documents, presentations or videos, need to get the key message(s) across quickly. The apt metaphor is the billboard.
Billboard marketeers need to get their message across to drivers in less than a second. Think of driving down the highway at 65 mph and glancing at a billboard. You don’t have time to read lines of text. You have time to grasp an image and a key phrase. That’s why billboard marketing is the ultimate form of messaging. Creators must boil the value proposition over and over again until they have it terse to the nth degree. Figure 1 shows some examples that illustrate this point.
Examples of Effective Billboards
Source: Google Images
These examples are effective since the leave the view with a clear message of the value of the product. Looking at the first on, we see a tasty hot dog and are asked whether we love dogs. If we do, we leave with the action to think Pink’s. The second example hits the viewer with a simple message: Natural, a pineapple and Skyy Vodka. As you can see each of these takes advantage of the number 3.
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