Ads Vs. Content – Which Will You Remember

The Just Brakes jingle has been stuck in my head all day. Yes, I realize that they really do care, but when my oil change light comes on, the chances of me making a point to find a Just Brakes are slim. Slim to none, actually. I’ll be going to the first $19.95 sign I see on my way home.

Jingles are peppy and fun, but the repetitive claims that Just Brakes cares about me doesn’t give me any particular reason to seek them out for all my auto needs.

The same goes for my favorite commercials. The Darth Vader kid using The Force on that car during the Super Bowl was classic. But now that I’m thinking about it, I’m not going to go buy a VW just because the commercial made me chuckle. If I am looking for a car, I want stats and information I can read, maybe even print out.

This is the difference between content and ads. Content gives a reason to take action and provides useful information. And this can be done in an equally entertaining way. Entertaining information keeps people’s attention.

Leave the Persuasion to Austen

Your reaction to the phrase “call to action” is probably to cringe, or at least run screaming from the room. Nobody wants to try to be persuaded to do something.

Good content is as far from a pushy salesman as possible. The reasons you’re giving are informative, and things that the readers are already looking for.

Knowing your audience is key. The last thing on an ecstatic Cheesehead’s brain is “What should my next car be?” But content on how a Mercedes is different from a BMW is exactly what a prominent car buyer is looking for. And notice I said “different from” and not “better.” Nobody wants your opinion about your company. Let readers form their own judgments.

But don’t forget to give them the means to do so.

Scroll Down Equals Sales Up

The difference between getting 100 hits and 100 readers is huge. The key? Your entertainment/content value factor. Sure, you may have all the information your audience is looking for, but getting them past the first couple of sentences is harder than you think.

Finding a voice that people can relate to is the essential first step. This could also be the difference between just getting traffic and turning traffic into sales. You can’t give people the information they need if they push the back button before you want them to.

Instead, show them where the scroll down arrow is. And if you’re good enough, they’ll find the bookmarks bar on their own.