Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The Easy Way To Shoot Yourself In The Foot

I have an anniversary coming up. So finding a perfect gift has been top-of-mind. I’m on the web reading every ad, checking every review, searching sites for ideas. I’m watching the television and tuned in to each 30 second spot. Then, on my way to work I notice a great sign on the sidewalk in front of an intriguing shop. You know, one of those places you may have passed a million times before, but with your current elevated awareness, its seems to jump at you from the road. It says “Original Gift Items - Perfect for your anniversary”. This is crazy. How did they know I would be driving here? So I take the time to find a parking spot. I get out, and walk towards the store front. The sign takes up the whole store window, and its promise has me thrilled about what lies ahead. With a message like that, I know that what’s on the other side of that door has got to be exactly what I had in mind. I try the door. It’s locked. The sign looks down at me, taunting me with a promise it won’t deliver. This store probably had 200,000 people go through this same experience.

Lots of impressions. No conversions.
Big Promise. No Delivery.

This store probably had 200,000 people go through this same experience. Why would this store/brand/website waste its time and money on grabbing attention and not making sales? An easy answer, but a scenario that pollutes the traditional marketing space and has crept into the online and new media space.

Why do marketers continue to build hype and break trust? Why do marketers continue to degrade every possible way to connect their consumers? Is it any wonder that online ads have become another "branding" medium, while 'old' consumers and companies are skeptical about 'new' media?