Times have changed. Has your advertising?
In colleges around the country, students of advertising are learning that they can study the culture of various times by looking at ads. That’s because ads need to be current with lifestyles in order to resonate with consumers.
Magazine ads during World War II depict patriotic themes from women working in factories to men fighting in the fields, whereas ads from the Cold War era show a very different slice of life – women in aprons happily baking and tending to the home and men suited up for the office. These images were product agnostic and seen in promotions for everything from motor oil to fashion.
Hindsight is 20-20 and it’s easy to see now why neither type of ad imagery would work in today’s world. Not as obvious, but equally important, is the fact that ads from the early start of the Millenium also won’t work in this decade. Ten years is a new generation and requires a new generation of ads.
What ad messaging and imagery will work today? Look critically at ads that resonate with you as a consumer and consider how you might incorporate those elements in your own ads. Consider the audience you want to reach and what their current concerns may be. Although ads have changed from decade to decade, ad goals have not. Your goal is always to provide images and copy that motivate your potential target audience to take action and feel that they are getting their needs met with your products and services. Some times those needs are subliminal such as the need for security, coolness, and rarely are about price, even during a recession.
Take a new look at your ad copy. Does it speak to today’s consumer’s issues or desires? If not, you have a strong clue why your ads may not be working as they did in the past. It’s time for your long overdue makeover and to get your ads into present times.
The Walk-away: If you want your business to be relevant and resonate with today’s consumers, don’t date yourself with ad copy and graphics from 5-10 years ago. Give your ads updated legs that can walk the talk of the times.