Repeated studies show that the ear works much faster than the eye: in fact, the mind is able to understand a spoken word in 140 milliseconds, while it takes 180 milliseconds to understand the printed word. Psychologists believe the 40-second millisecond delay occurs when the brain translates visual data (in this case, the printed word) into aural sounds it can understand.
Similarly what you hear is retained longer in your memory than what you see. A visual image can fade in one second, while an auditory "image" can last four or five times as long. Because sound lasts much longer in the mind, the spoken word leads to greater clarity of thought than a picture does. Plus, the tone of the human voice gives words an emotional impact that printed works alone can't impart.
"There is much evidence that the mind works by the ear, that thinking is a process of manipulations sounds rather than images (even when pictures or photographs are involved). As a result, you see what you hear, not what the eye tells you it has seen."
Implications for Advertising
Are visuals worth all the money that is spent on them?
Not if you consider that, to consumers most categories of products – cars, computers, appliances, toothpastes, toilet tissues – pretty much look alike. What is different is the intangible ideas attached to them. BMW has "driving," Apple owns "ease of use." Maytag has "reliable." Crest means "cavity prevention." Charmin is "squeezable." But while they may look alike, they don't sound alike.
Written language must be processed by the mind into an internal form of ORAL languages. Scientific evidence strongly suggests that the ear drives the eye, and the ear works the mind. Thinking is a process of manipulating sounds, not images. As a result, you see what you hear – and what the sound has led you to expect to see – not what the eye tells you it has seen.
"Radio has brand-building power all by itself. Marketing plans aren't dependent on pictures, but they do need words or sounds. Radio's sound brings an ability to capture the emotional content of the human voice."
The implications of these findings are staggering. In many ways, they call for a complete reorientation from the visual to the verbal point of view. The visual still will play an important role in communications – but the verbal should be the primary driver, while the pictures reinforce the words.
Consumers spend 85% of their time with ear-oriented media such as Radio and TV, but spend on 15% of their time with such eye-oriented media as newspapers and magazines.
Yet advertisers spend 55% of their dollars on eye media (print) and only 45% of their dollars on ear media.
So What Does This Mean to You?
Since marketing (and branding) is a matter of successfully creating a positive association for your product or service in the mind of the consumer,
And since the mid works by manipulating sounds rather than images,
Then Radio, the premier sound medium, is one of the best ways to directly influence the minds of consumers.
Jack Trout is the author of Positioning: The Battle For Your Mind, Marketing Warfare, bottom-Up Marketing, and The New Positioning.
1. Radio Targets Key Prospects
Each radio format attracts specific age, income, education, and lifestyle groups. You can identify the best prospect for your product and advertise towards those primary targets with little waste.
2. Radio Is Powerful and Intrusive
The use of the human voice, sound effects, and music can evoke strong emotions and images that grab attention faster than visual media. Your message is front and center with a listener, never buried in the back pages or right next to your competitors.
3. Radio is Intimate
Radio creates an intimate one-on-one relationship between the advertiser and the listener that parallels the relationship listeners have with their favorite radio station. It's the most personal of all mediums, and the next best thing to word-of-mouth advertising.
4. Radio Builds Top-of-Mind Awareness
To be successful advertising must be repetitive. Radio's affordability allows you to buy the repeated exposures necessary to sell products. Repetition builds awareness, reputation and store traffic.
5. Radio Reaches Everyone.
Radio reaches 93% of all persons every week, including teens, adults, men and women. San Diegans 12+ spend over 18 hours with radio each week.
6. Radio Goes Along with Customers on the Go
Today's consumers spend their lives on the run. That's why they spend an average of three hours a day with radio. Radio is uniquely able to reach the consumer where other media can't... commuting, at home, at work, on-line, jogging, at the beach, the ballpark...the anytime, anywhere medium.
7. Radio Influences People Closest to the Time of Purchase or Activity
The closer the media impression can get to the time of purchase or activity, the better the chance of influencing behavior. Radio is the medium of choice between the hours of 6am-6pm, when most purchasing behavior occurs.
8. Radio Involves People with Their Community
People depend on the radio each day for news and entertainment. Listeners can find out what is happening in their community and around the world as Radio updates them all day long on news, traffic, weather, financial information and local events.
9. Radio Is Flexible
One of radio's greatest strengths is its flexibility. Copy changes can be made quickly and production prices are far less expensive than all other major media.
10. Radio Motivates People to Shop and Buy
Radio is an active medium capable of stirring emotion, creating demand, and selling your product or service.
by Roy H. WilliamsYou ran an inspired series of wonderful ads.
And got nothing in return.
Like so many Sir Galahads on the quest for the Holy Grail, businesspeople continue to search with near-religious ardor for "the perfect ad campaign." And many, when they have found it, learn that it's not enough.
One of the greatest myths in marketing is the belief that advertising, by itself, is able to drive steady traffic into a business. This perception is supremely evident when a businessperson looks at an ad professional and says, "My only problem is traffic. If I had more traffic I'd sell more customers. Traffic is your department. Bring me customers. Now."
What makes good ads fail?
1. Too Little Repetition.
If your ad doesn't make an irresistible, limited-time offer, you're going to have to run it often enough for customers to first become aware of it, and then to become familiar with it. Next, you've got to wait for them to need what you sell. And the longer the product-purchase* cycle, the longer you may have to wait. (*Restaurants will see results more quickly than carpet stores because we eat more often than we replace our carpet.) Ads that make an irresistible, limited-time offer may work like magic, but the longer you run them; the less well they work. Until they finally quit working altogether. So what do you do then?
2. Deeply Entrenched Competitors.
No matter how good your ad campaign, it may not be enough to take customers away from a competitor who's doing a good job of meeting their needs.
1. Advertising Creates Store Traffic
Continuous store traffic is the first step toward increasing sales and expanding your base of shoppers. The more people who come into the store, the more opportunities you have to make sales.
2. Advertising Attracts New Customers
Your market changes constantly. Newcomers to your area mean new customers to reach. People earn more money, which means changes in lifestyles and buying habits. The shopper who wouldn't consider your business a few years ago may be a prime customer now.
3. Advertising Encourages Repeat Business
Shoppers don't have the store loyalty they once did. Shoppers have mobility and freedom of choice. You must advertise to keep pace with your competition.
4. Advertising Generates Continuous Business
Your doors are open. Employees are on the payroll. Even the slowest days produce sales. As long as you're in business, you've got overhead to meet and new people to reach. Advertising can generate traffic now... and in the future.
5. Advertising is an Investment in Success
Advertising gives you a long-term advantage over competitors who cut back or cancel advertising. A survey of more than 3,000 companies found that advertisers who maintained or expanded advertising over a five-year period saw their sales increase an average of 100%, and companies that cut advertising grew at less than half the rate.
6. Advertising Keeps You in the Competitive Race
There are only so many customers in the market ready to buy at any one time. You have to advertise to keep regular customers and to counterbalance the advertising of your competition. You must advertise to keep or expand your market share or you will lose to more aggressive competitors.
7. Advertising Keeps Your Business Top-of-Mind With Shoppers
Many people postpone buying decisions. They often go from store to store comparing prices, quality and service. Advertising must reach them steadily throughout the entire decision-making process. Your name must be fresh in their minds when they decide to buy.
8. Advertising Gives Your Business a Successful Image
In a competitive market, rumors and bad news travel fast. Nothing sets the record straight faster than advertising: it tells your customers and competitors that your doors are open and you're ready for business. Advertising that is vigorous and positive can bring shoppers into the marketplace regardless of the economy.
9. Advertising Maintains Morale
Positive advertising boosts morale. It gives your staff strong additional support. When advertising or promotions is suddenly cut or canceled, sales people and employees may become alarmed or demoralized.
10. Advertising Brings in Big Bucks for Your Business
Advertising works. Businesses that succeed are usually strong, steady advertisers. Look around. You'll find the most aggressive and consistent advertisers are almost invariably the most successful. Join their ranks by advertising and watch your business grow!
by Roy H. Williams
The length of the "ramping up period" an ad campaign will require before you begin to see results is determined by the following factors, listed in descending order of their importance:
1. Product Purchase Cycle
Product Purchase Cycle: How often is the customer in the market for this product? Because we eat more often than we redecorate, ads for restaurants will yield results much faster than ads for carpet or furnishings. Nearly every person reached by advertising will eat at least one meal in a restaurant this week, but only 1 in 452 will be involved in any particular 7 to 10-year product purchase cycle. The longer your product purchase cycle, the longer you'll have to invest in advertising before you feel like it's working.