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Advertising - Media, Timing, Audience

Advertising - Who is the Buyer of Your Product?

Dare I admit it, I was watching TV one evening recently when an advertisement caught my attention.

Great Ad, you might think, to grab the attention of a Marketing practitioner!

However, it wasn’t the Ad that ignited my interest. Instead, it was the audience targeted, the timing of it, and the media used that aroused my marketing neurons.

The “What are you doing on Ice?” campaign by the Victoria Government is quite a good advertisement from a technical view (You Tube It displays anti-social behaviour that we all like to avoid. It uses ‘scare-tactics’ to link the use of the drug, Ice, with rejection of us by our peer group, and suggests negative consequences on our work and income source if we use the drug. It fringes on an emotional appeal whilst conveying an objective message.

So why did this Ad not have impact on me when I viewed it?

I analysed the Ad from three perspectives:

1. The media - TV

2. Time schedule – late evening

3. The audience – me! That is, 45+, no mid-week social life, with few Facebook (or social media) friends, who watch trash on TV rather than documentaries, and don't substitute TV watching with other home entertainment such as electronic games.

The Ad was aired on TV at around 9:00 pm during a programme called “Homeland” (an American CIA drama). I won’t attempt to define the audience of Homeland, however, I doubt that many people watching that programme, at that time of night, would be potential Ice users.

The profile of an Ice user displayed in the Ad was 20-35 years, single, non-professional worker, living at home.

Such a person is more likely to be out socializing at night, rather than watching TV. If they were at home, then surely they would be watching a sports channel on TV, or playing an electronic game, or ‘surfing’ the Internet, or interacting on social media.

So, did the Ad agency get it horribly wrong?

Probably not! On reflection, I realised that the Ad was most likely spot-on-target. In the background of the Ad is a mother looking terribly sorrowful and hapless as she observes her son’s demise from the use of the drug Ice. The Ad was pitched at the people around the drug users who are frustrated by their inability to help their loved-one. The tag at the end is the drug assistance information line.

This is a good reminder that advertisers need to identify who the ‘real’ product users and purchasers are. Children’s products are targeted at the people who buy them – usually the parents and other adults who care for the children. Often car commercials and household entertainment products are targeted at the children in the family, as they often ‘influence’ the purchase.

To assist you with understanding the Marketing component of a business, consider advertisements as you watch them and question why the media and timing schedule were selected;

and to whom the Ad is targeted. Who will be the actual purchaser, who will be paying for the product, and who might be Influencers in the buying decision?

You’ll soon train yourself to identify these concepts when you promote your products in your own organisation.

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