Do businesses still need advertising? Of course. You cannot take advertising away from any industry. As a matter of fact, without any level of advertising, even sales from household brands will plummet. Now making an ad noticeable? That's the more interesting question. Every time you publish an ad, you have one singular goal in mind: to get noticed. Your advertising efforts are your one-way ticket to attracting attention and making a buzz. Getting your message across is key to getting noticed in a world full of digital noise and content overload. I repeat, it’s about delivering your message, never the medium. The truth is, noticeable ads will remain noticeable no matter the medium. Sadly, not every business owner thinks the same. Roy H. Williams has had his moments dealing with people who believe otherwise, like:_“I work in the furniture industry. Which media should I choose?”“My target audience is people who are afraid of the dentist. What’s a good mailing list company?”“TV ads work very well for my uncle in attracting new customers. He’s made a fortune off them. What's your opinion of TV?”“No one in my town listens to the radio anymore. Everyone has a smartphone.”“Advertising doesn't work for my kind of business.”_These are the kind of questions and statements that leave Roy dumbfounded. Crappy messaging emblazoned on a billboard will still add no sense of value to customers. They will walk past your invisible message without a second glance. To get noticed, you must master the art of crafting provocative, flabbergasting, and stupefying messages in your ads. We'll share that art with you today. Keep reading.
Mastering the Art
We see thousands of commercials every single day. You hear ads over the radio. You read them every time you scroll on social media or those in-video YouTube ads we all hate. But every once in a while, you see that one ad that makes you go, "What the %*$# just happened?"Have you ever had that moment?Weird advertisements make you cringe, laugh, disgusted, surprised, and even question your existence. Yet no matter how dismayed you felt, you couldn't get enough. It’s as if you have tofinish the weird commercial; otherwise, the experience is incomplete. Throw in all the flak you could think of, but one common denominator binds them together: they get noticed. That's the kind of advertising you should aim for. There isn't a treasure trove of unusual advertisements scattered all over the internet because most people are not weird. Only a few of them still make appearances on TV. A considerable chunk gets banned. However, they won't fail to induce a good dose of chuckles after a rewatch. Weird adverts or odd-vertising, as I'd like to put it, are not the golden standard to get noticed. It’s not all about how your advertising team writes the ad. Understanding your audience is a significant part of mastering the art of getting noticed._What do they relate the most to? What sort of value are they looking for? What makes them tick? What infuriates them? What forces them to take action?_Advertising is never about what makes your business happy. It's always been about the audience. You will only master the art of getting noticed when you produce ads FOR audiences. Throw in your values and beliefs, then mix in their pain and pleasure points. Pour a sprinkle of humor, drama, or audacity. Then add a smidge of weirdness. That’s how you concoct a head-turner ad. Keep in mind, industries vary from one another. In the residential home services, you're selling externally triggered, grudge purchases. That means you’re selling solutions people are forced to buy, and this brands your business with a negative connotation from the outset. Comedy is one way to appease your customer's raging emotions, and sometimes that's what your ads need. If you’re looking for killer ads that give your business all the buzz, we got you fam. Book a call with Ryan Chute of Wizard of Ads™, and we’ll hook you up.
Importance of Relevance
“Relevance is what determines whether an ad works or not.
Every media fails when it delivers a message no one cares about.”
— Roy H. Williams
Relevance has always been the foundation of effective communication. Say otherwise and suffer the roars of contempt from the advertising Gods. However, in this day and age, relevance doesn't seem to be as relevant. To be relevant is to appropriately connect with people within the right context. A relevant ad satisfies what audiences are searching for, not what you are selling. Every day, businesses answer unasked questions that nobody cares about in their well-intended and inoffensive ads. _How is this helpful? Is what you’re saying going to make a difference? Does it satisfy anyone's actual underlying felt needs? Will it make your prospect happy or waste their precious time?_These questions form the litmus test that examines the relevance of information. For your business to get noticed, you must put out relevant ads. But in the context of advertising, relevance has nothing to do with entertainment or artistic delivery. Being relevant is all about what your buyers actually value. Your set of solutions has a corresponding value, no matter what business you are in. Creating ads that get noticed means leveraging what your customers value. Your customers will only buy based on these motivators. In other words, a tastefully crafted comedy advertisement with lackluster value will still yield mediocre results. Whereas weird ads with great value? Those are the ads that get noticed. Let's look at an example:Old Spice - The Man Your Man Could Smell LikeOld Spice is known for the absurd ads that are densely packed with intrinsic value. Take "The Man Your Man Could Smell Like," for example. If there were a list of the weirdest Old Spice commercials, this would rank within the top three. Contrary to the deodorant company's market, this 30-second video ad targeted ladies. It featured a handsome man, Isaiah Mustafa, with an oddball sense of humor. The commercial was very effective in generating a lot of social media chatter. Dissecting the ad, you'll notice that underneath the banter and funny quips, Isaiah never stops talking about their value. The transforming landscapes, being on a yacht, pouring diamonds, and riding a horse were all Old Spice's essence metaphors. This ad etched Old Spice as the epitome of scented masculinity. Any woman who watches the ad will desire their partner to smell like a million dollars. Weird, quirky, smooth, fun, and relevant. Good advertising. All in all, this odd commercial is an excellent example of how to get noticed for all the right reasons.
Ads That Failed
You see countless ads per day. How many of those do you actually remember? Exactly. That's what North Americans experience each and every day. You see an ad, you forget the ad. This vicious cycle happens day in and day out. All those unremarkable ads drown in the Sea of Sameness, never to be recalled again. That's the reality, but you know what's worse? Your advertising efforts could be one of those ads that won't sink in and make their mark. For businesses like yours, you can't afford to waste resources on ads that don't generate strong retention and recall. Producing disruptive and attention-grabbing ads delivered at the correct frequency is the only solution when you want to get noticed. However, if you've run ads before that failed miserably, here are the potential reasons why:
1. The ad was so predictable that few people paid attention.
How would you feel if you sat through a movie that has already been spoiled to you? Predictable advertisements follow this same theme. They lack anticipation, surprise, and delight which puts your audiences on edge, looking forward to the punchline. In this case, your only solutions are to get a new ad writer or give the one you've got creative freedom. The best ads pack an unexpected twist that leaves audiences open-mouthed and in complete delight.
2. Prospective customers didn’t care.
This is where relevance comes in. You want ads to be relevant to your market; otherwise, what value are they even getting from you? If you are met with this problem, it's time to dump the irrelevant subject matter. Spruce up your value by discovering what people actually care about and then talk about that instead.
3. The ad’s message is relevant but unclear.
The thing about Old Spice is that their advertising is funny and relevant at the same time. Plus, they conveyed both fronts perfectly. You are doing something wrong when your creativity waters down and confuses your clarity. After all, what’s the point of being cute and clever if your prospect can’t remember the name of your business?Furthermore, tell your layout artist that the prettiest ad is rarely the most effective. You're running a business, not a fashion magazine. Ensure the creative team understands their continued employment depends on creating ads that sell the product.
4. Your ad campaign commitment is shorter than your product selling cycle.
This is a common rookie mistake that dooms many advertising campaigns. The sales cycle for some products or services can be measured in years, yet the ad campaign is only committed to three months. How effective can any ad campaign be in such a short time? It takes time to get noticed, then get remembered, and finally, get liked and trusted. You have to do all of this before they even need what you sell! Your only solution is to commit to an ad campaign longer than your product selling cycle.
5. Ads written from a different cultural perspective than the customer's own are not engaging.
It's crucial to get noticed for the right reasons. Tone deaf, culturally insensitive, or just plain irrelevant advertising will not get you noticed in a good way. Ensure your ad speaks to your target audience in a language and style they can identify with. To solve this, hire an ad writer who understands the cultural background they are trying to reach. This will add a more personal touch that takes your business closer to your market. Always remember that ads fail not because of the delivered medium. **Great advertisements always make the medium work when delivered at the correct frequency.**Here’s the bottom line from Roy H. Williams:“Ads that fail in one media would usually have failed in any other. The media is not the message. The message is the message. And the message is what matters most.”
Noticeable ads appeal to Broca’s Area, the same part of the brain that makes us notice and fixate on something. Think about it this way. What makes you look across a crowded club and see a person you'd like to interact with? There are probably a hundred people inside, but not everyone possesses the quality that makes your eyes linger. To get noticed, your ads need to stand out of the ordinary. They need the element that binds weird, ridiculous, and absurd ads together. If your advertising stands 600 ft. above the competition, only the blind won't see. Always remember that the more disruptive an ad, the higher traction it gets. However, the relevance must never get drowned out by the creativity.
What Makes Bizarre Ads Undeniably Noticeable?
If we try to break down every successful bizarre ad, we'll find four qualities that made them noticeable. We'll discuss them below:
- Visually stimulating
You should design a good ad to get noticed and stop scrolling thumbs. It should be so visually appealing that people can't help but give it a second look.
Anyone who remembers the Squatty Potty understands what visual appeal looks like. Can you imagine showing a unicorn pooping rainbows to promote your bowel movement stimulating brand? Despite the rather distasteful concept, they pulled off a 3-minute ad that got eyes glued to the screen with their visual appeal.
“There is no such thing as an attention span.
All you have to do is leave out the boring parts.” - Roy H. Williams
- Emotionally moving
Do you know the saying, "bad publicity is still publicity"? Well, that still applies to advertising. Ads that get noticed are effective in evoking audiences' emotions. The kind of emotion is irrelevant, so long as it gets under your skin.
When you portray experiences relatable to people or share values that align with them, you can nudge customers into buying. Do you know why?
The part of the brain that controls decisions has no faculty for words or logic. Because of that, you only need to tug the right emotional triggers to convince people to justify the buy with logic.
- Punchy headlines
In terms of written advertisements, your headlines are your sales pitch to an indifferent crowd. Win the headline battle, and you have secured a click that will listen to what you have to say. Your headline is the hook to catch your fish.
A weak headline will kill your campaign even if you offer some of the best solutions paired with a killer advertising copy or a sensational offer. Don't skimp on the headline. It does 80% of the job for what comes next.
- Sense of urgency
Ever notice how online ads have a call to action? This is because you want to inspire action from a sense of urgency in your audiences. Great advertisements without a sense of urgency will not activate people's impulse buying tendencies. That's not good business for you.
Whether that's limited inventory or an offer with an expiration date, urgency pushes people to act fast. Otherwise, you slice a thick amount of leverage from your solutions.
For example, look at one of the most recent controversial ads in the Philippines. It’s about a soda product called RC Cola, as observed below:
For context, the ad follows a student who goes home after being bullied and teased as ‘adopted.’ He goes home complaining to his mom and then exposes his back implanted with four drinking glasses. To appease her son's raging emotions, she takes her head off, revealing that she has a bottle of RC Cola for a head. The ad ends with the entire family drinking the soda from the son's back. The advertisement obviously checked all the boxes that make weird ads, well, weird. Visually stimulating, also a check, the editing was spot on for a commercial. Emotionally evoking, agreed, the acting was convincing. Bizzare, very– in fact, I'm still not sure what the advertisement suggests. While seemingly the perfect ad for getting noticed, one element they lacked is relevance. Your relevance is the value you're trying to convey and convince audiences to choose. Despite artistic efforts, RC Cola failed to explain its relevance over other popular brands. That's where the problem begins. You create a popular buzzing ad but lacked the punchline to make it a head-turner. In the end, all RC Cola had was hype and nothing more. As Roy H. Williams puts it:
- Delivering a pointless message in a powerful manner results in hype.
- Delivering a powerful message in a pointless fashion is the result of weak creative.
- Delivering a powerful message in a powerful style is the ad that gets noticed.
You have an eye-catchy ad, but how are sales? Again, relevance is the lynchpin. When RC Cola evolves this ad into speaking emotionally to the underdog and builds a tribe of raving fans, they will have turned the corner on cute and clever, joining the titans of industry.
Why Showing Reactions and Facial Expressions is Powerful for Ads
All the ads are geared to an audience's rational or emotional sensibilities. On the whole, emotional ads achieve more success than rational ads. You're more likely to get noticed when your ads bank on pure emotions than if it was purely informational. Adding in a sprinkle of sentimentality propels an ad even further. Feelings of pride, love, happiness, loneliness, sadness, nostalgia, and friendships are all great emotional value boosters. Showing facial expressions and reactions in ads is a powerful weapon. It's one of the quickest ways to get noticed. A person's face is an emotional center; by using it in ads, we get a quick connection to the feelings being conveyed. In contrast, bland emotional portrayal compromises the messaging of an advertisement. Look at those ads with silent laughter. A part of us feel uplifted and light when we see people smiling. This emotional connection translates into advertising. Look at those ads with silent laughter.
Are Your Ads Capturing the Attention of Your Target Audience?
Advertising is a tricky business. It's an art and a science that takes years to master. The most important thing is to get noticed by the right people in the right way. Ads can fail for many reasons, but they're often not relevant to their audience or don't stand out. If you're looking for relevant, weird, disruptive, and funny ads that will make your audience say yes, we can help. Book a call with Ryan Chute of Wizard of Ads™, and let's create those mind-blowing ads.