Another old adage that had been a mainstay: “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” Don’t give up, don’t be a quitter. Work hard, work smart, but keep trying until you you get it right. Get up. Get back on your feet. Get back on your horse. So many ways of saying: You’re probably going to fail the first couple of times.
It’s a good thing to fail. Often we can learn more from our failures than we can from our successes. Failure forces us to analyze our approach and find the flaws that cause the failure. When we succeed, we often don’t take the time to see if we succeeded by luck or by design, or where the collision of those two things might have covered up inefficiencies that we will overlook the next time we perform the task.
Specifically, in the world of branding and advertising, there is a huge shift in progress. With the rebuking of traditional noise mechanisms like radio, television and print media, we are experiencing an age where even repetitive messaging is starting to fail in the marketplace. The decline of click-throughs on banner advertising is a solid indicator that pay-and-display advertising is not going to be a the most viable method of brand message delivery in the future. There’s solid statistics to show that the old forms of ad delivery on the internet, as well as in the mainstream, are losing their effectiveness.
In speculation, it might not even be possible in coming years. With Torrents, On-Demand, PVR’s and other forms of advertising excluding media, it will be harder and harder to get citizens to even be aware of new products and brands in the market place. Consumers are actively trying to block out and ignore advertising whenever possible. While it is not a completely hostile revolt, it is a passive/aggressive boycott of the amount of noise that advertising has created.
It’s a difficult problem to face – since the industrial revolution, the free market economy has relied heavily on mass-market messaging to deliver products far and wide. Our entertainment creation and delivery systems are extremely dependent on advertising. If the ads aren’t effective, then producers aren’t going to pay for it. And if that cash flow system isn’t in place, how are we going to get episodes of the Big Bang Theory?
It’s not to say that advertising itself is dying. Simply that we need to be able to adapt and change approaches. What worked twenty years ago isn’t going to work now. What worked five years ago isn’t going to work next year. And adding a twitter feed isn’t going to salvage that.
One of the key factors is interaction and being flexible, dynamic and quick to respond to change. Social networking isn’t going to be effective unless corporate producers become social. It’s becoming more important for advertisers not to just deliver a message to the masses, but to deliver a question. From there, they have to listen to the answers and respond, continuing to engage people on a person-to-person basis. The real question is – can they? Can you?