Over the Dandruff

Thoughts we often overlook

3. Nine

That’s the number of seconds, on average, we can pay attention to something for. NINE seconds, down from twenty minutes just a few generations ago. It’s pathetic, alarming and informative.

Last week Dave Allen, of North, wrote an essay that places some of the blame for the short attention span on the web, specifically social media. This is a valid argument. There is a brand overload in the world of social media that users want to avoid. Facebook users want to connection with friends and family. Tweeters user Twitter, well, because it’s awesome. Take a look at MySpace, I know it’s been almost 5 years but take a look. This is why we made the switch the Facebook, it proves that social brands never last on the internet.

Last April, Sally Hogshead had a presentation about the importance of introduction, whether for a brand or an online dating profile. The ability to fascinate in these nine seconds has become the “knock on the door” to reach your audience, so it’s important to knock appropriately.

The attention grabber and big idea have to be precise and fascinating. The target audience has to be spot on and the viewer must be tuned in.

This nine second phenomena is the force bringing product placement back on the scene. I’m not talking about the type of car used in Transformers used in a movie or the soda Snooki uses to chase her booze, but more along the lines of how Entourage promoted Avion and AquaHydrate. These two products benefited from having their target audience in place and engaged, catching the attention of many viewers (including myself).

You see these subtle slip-ins all the time. Take EA sports’ Madden for example. Every time your team makes it between the opponent’s 20 yard-line and the goal line, you don’t just make it into the red zone you make it into the Old Spice red zone. When your running back rushes for 190 yards and 3 touchdowns he’s not the player of the game, he’s the Old Spice Swagger player of the game and each player has an Old Spice Swagger rating.

Old Spice is able to reach their target audience within the nine second attention span and communicate their brand identity to the gamer. Avion and AquaHydrate capitalized on practically free marketing, thanks to the Marky Mark connection, and have become increasingly popular among the Entourage audience; their target audience.

Keep your eyes peeled for this type of product placement if you have a second, or nine.

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October 5, 2011 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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