Tag Archives: advertising success

AGD’s – Attention Getting Devices

How long does it take you to check your smart phone when you hear the familiar “ding” that you’ve received a text message?  If the phone is in your hand already, only a few seconds.  If you have to find the phone, perhaps 30 seconds.  And who knows how long if you have it on vibrate or can’t remember where you put it?

The point is that little “ding” is a very poignant and effective attention getting device, or an AGD for those of you into types of acronyms, like F2F for meeting someone face-to-face.  That “ding-y” AGD is part of the reason text messaging is growing in popularity for business owners, and why texting has such a phenomenal response rate.  Unless a text correspondence has ended, the sender or receiver is likely to continue responding until it does.  And the end result is likely to stir one of the parties to action.  Hence the effectiveness of flash mob.

Jamie's Baby

This banner from www.greenbayfloorrestore.com’s website is an example of an Internet attention getter; the client wanted more carpet cleaning business.

In more traditional methods of advertising, AGDs are as important, if not more so, than a strong call to action.  Think of a direct mail piece that blends in.  It looks like all the other direct mail correspondence in your mailbox and, most likely, gets recycled before it hits the countertop.  We could spend an entire blog on direct mail, but as it relates to getting someone’s attention, that piece must stand out from everything else, be delivered at the right time, and pique the receiver’s curiosity enough to get them to open it and see what it’s all about.  The odds are still in favor of it getting recycled, but if the offer is strong enough, it may survive.

Watch some television commercials, if only to see what grabs your attention.  This can be important to you as a marketer and business owner if your target demographic matches your profile to some extent.  Is the AGD a recognizable celebrity?  A cute pet?  Someone doing something silly or scary?  Does the AGD tug at your heart strings, make you cry, or cause you to salivate for some reason?  Most TV commercials, while they may seem longer, are only 30 seconds.  That’s a short time to get a viewer’s attention, pitch the product, and call the observer to do something about it.

Music and humor can be attention getting devices for advertising your product or service.  Beautiful images and sexual innuendo can also work, but the key to your success is using AGDs that reflect your image and convey your unique selling proposition to the targeted audience as clearly and succinctly as possible to GRAB THEIR ATTENTION … like yelling in an E-mail.

The fun part is that you’ll know yours when you discover it.


What is a Brand?

A brand is an illusion; a perception in the mind of a consumer.

Every consumer is different, so a brand can mean one thing to one person and something totally different to another.

Consider some examples:

If you drink red wine, and maybe have a glass every day, do you buy the same brand every time or do you try different reds?  Do you drink a red because you heard it was good for you?  Some of you may enjoy how you feel after a glass or two.  All red wines are perceived to – in a branding sense – have medicinal purposes or go good with certain foods.  If you, as the consumer, lock in and buy cases from a certain winery, you have bought the illusion it’s the best red wine … in your mind.

Red wineWhat convinced you it’s the brand to buy?  Was it a commercial or advertising message?  Was it an influential bartender?  A good friend who also loves it?  The perception that you should at least try the brand, followed by a bottle you really enjoyed, are the steps that would have created your brand loyalty.

My grandfather drove a Ford automobile.  My uncle managed a fleet of vehicles for a multi-national company; all Fords.  My dad drove Fords, although he was the trading sort and brought home a variety of makes and models over the years.  This family history created the impression with me that Ford was the vehicle to own, so I’ve been loyal to the brand because of that perception.  Three of the vehicles I’ve purchased new have been Mercury products; a former, now defunct, division of the Ford Motor Company.  The kicker is that the illusion has stuck, largely because of history.

Yes, a brand is an association with a corporate product or service.  Business owners will pay exorbitant fees to a big name accounting firm because of a perception, which might be that “they must be good because they charge so much.”  In reality, accounting is about debits and credits so any certified public accountant (CPA) should be able to service your account as well, if not better, than the higher priced firm.

Is one brand of milk any better than the next one in the cooler?  Only in perception … and probably price.  Think about it.  Where does the milk come from?  A cow.  What the cow eats may change the content of the milk, but it comes out the same way and is processed and bottled according to federal standards.  And here’s a secret that applies to other products as well:  Some milk processing plants bottle milk for a private label as well as for their own label.

From a business marketing perspective, the more people you can convince that your illusion – your brand – is what they should believe in, purchase, and remain loyal to as long at they need or want it, the greater will be the profits on your bottom line.

Illusions can work like magic if you create the right ones.  That’s where professional help such as Brand Irons comes in, to strategize and help you create the most effective marketing for your product and services.