Remember that classic line from When Harry Met Sally?
For some reason, these women are wildly ecstatic about their salad. Seriously? Is it topped with Thousand Orgasm dressing?
Nope. Just more fake advertising.
Americans are the most advertised to society in the history of the world. And after decades of being pitched, we’re numb. We’ve become zen masters at filtering out sales pitches. Whether it’s salad or corny insurance spots, we’re done with anything contrived.
Still, advertisers just can’t stop churning out crap, regardless of whether their ads are effective. Sales metrics can dissect the reach, clicks and transactions of digital campaigns. But mass media campaigns are just launched into the ether. Rather than reverberate and spread, they evaporate.
So, if commercials don’t move the needle, how can companies get noticed? It comes down to the three R’s; Ratings, Reviews and Recommendations.
Here’s my take. It’s all about building a great reputation. And that comes the old-fashioned way, you earn it. Deliver the goods, then let happy customers fan the flames. Yes, it’s a slow grind, with no shortcuts.
But here’s the secret to having impact: Authenticity. Seduce us with sincerity.
America’s most admired companies know this. Ever seen a commercial for Netflix? Of course not. They focus on hooking viewers with content we crave. Amazon doesn’t need doorbuster sales. Google doesn’t boast that they’re number one. Apple promotes their vision for making our lives better. Truly great brands don’t bother with gimmicks and slogans. Instead, they win loyal fans by solving our problems – not pitching their wares.
Real is the new fake. Raw is the new polished. Honesty is the new hype.