October 29, 2008

Emotion and Advertising

Posted by Bizaholic | 7:40 PM | , with 0 comments »

Marketing is an emotional game and good marketers know how to leverage emotions. But sometimes we get so engrossed in emotion that we forget that our ultimate objective is to sell a product and establish it as a brand. Often, we get sentimental and end up showcasing an emotional stuff that is brilliant yet fails to deliver the brand message.

If you are following some of the advertisements running on TV these days, you must have noticed the increased frequency of using kids to tell the brand story. Nothing wrong in it. Cute kids and doting parents typically generate emotions that are hard to ignore. Yet I was wondering if the emotional stuff generated through kids in advertising was putting the brand on the back seat.

There is an ad in which the proud parents ask the toddler to pronounce daddy, mama, banana, and Czechoslovakia. Touching ad and people may love to watch it many times. I too watch it when I find it on air. But it took me more than 10 exposure to realize that it is an ad for some insurance company. Max New York Life got in my head only after some 15 exposures. Well, I was too focused on watching the kid! Similarly, there is an ad about "a little girl intending to cultivate sone ke ped (golden tree) by sowing teeth". I guess it's Union Bank of India. There is an another "too focused on kid" ad about a small boy trying to learn to click his fingers. It's Indian Overseas bank (I just found this out!)

These ads look good to watch. But where is the brand connection? Do they tell a brand's story or a kid's story? Is it easy to identify the brand while watching the ad and relate to it? In my view, these kinds of ads fail in their primary purpose of delivering the brand message. If the process of delivering the message and building the connect with audience is through entertainment, it's great. But there is no point making ads to entertain people!

Emotion and entertainment is important in advertising and marketing. But ignoring reality is hazardous.