Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Tropical Vacation Ad?

What do you think this picture can promote if used in an ad?

When I put this question in the poll with the bicycles from below I wanted to learn what concepts are more appealing from a marketer stand point. What makes you click? What connects with your feelings and obsessions? I looked at the picture and I came up with the five ideas: public transportation, cotton candy, tropical vacation, jobs website, and banking savings account. I don’t know about you, but for me they all make perfect sense. Plus, one is subtle, one is strong, one is cute, one is obvious, and one is simply common. Honestly, I voted for “banking savings account”.

But interestingly, most votes (not that the poll could be representative for all universe) went to one of the oldest advertisement tricks: use the opposite to emphasize the message.

The results make me wonder whether the customers are more receptive to new poignant messages and products or they have a propensity to better assimilate familiar images and ideas. Assuming that we target the majority, the average John and Joe, if I had to choose where to use the bicycles it seems that I probably should go with the tropical vacation.

What does this mean? My friend says that the most important trait that makes people so alike is their desire to be different. Back to our marketers stand point, this is good, this is very good! It is way easier to conceive a strategy for a niche than for myriads of different cranky tastes.

Associating snowy bicycles with tropical vacations is how most of the companies think. It doesn’t make sense to change the world, let’s just give them what they know. But the big prize is in the bag of those who can change the way people see things. There is a famous example of a cloudy vision (coming from the early years of the Internet) when a former IBM top executive predicted that the maximum number of computers that would be connected to the web was five. Five?! At that time, who would have thought that computers could be used for something else but military stuff?

So, should a marketer be a step ahead today’s trends or stick with the good ol’ tricks? I guess the answer is yes!

1 comment:

James Moore said...

"the most important trait that makes people so alike is their desire to be different" - reminds me of the "we are all individuals" line from Life of Brian