I was reading an article the other day that suggested the problem with most marketing is the noise level. When creating a marketing piece we recognize that there is a lot of noise out there. The solution we decide to employ is to be louder.
All too often we do that by resorting to “Shock and Awe”. In the case of online media that means flashy visual effects, vibrant soundtracks and rapid pace editing. The overall effect is frenetic. All Michael Bey. Very little J.K. Rowling.
Here’s the thing. The reason we turned up the volume is to break through to the audience. But getting attention is not the same thing as holding it. And the ‘more noise’ approach just doesn’t work when the goal is to engage. The conspicuous display of technology actually builds a barrier to forming a meaningful connection.
Why? Because the only thing that builds true engagement is a meaningful story. And technology can quickly trample storytelling. The key to any technology based communication is to find a way to make everything between the sender and the receiver disappear.
When you watch your favorite movie you forget you are sitting in a theater. Your favorite song resonates in your head and heart, not from the stereo speakers. You get completely lost in the best books you ever read.
The technology that delivers the content to you has disappeared and you are engaged.
So it’s time to make your marketing disappear. The technology and process is far too visible.
Odds are your video has unnecessary special effects or is edited in a way that detracts from your message.
The way your story unfolds may be wooden and predictable. Everyone can see where it’s headed. Is there respect that your audience will follow along and figure it out without your having resorted to a familiar formula or template?
So what are the solutions to this dilemma as a content creator?
Identify one person to whisper your story to. Tell it with meaning and reverence for them alone. Make a deep connection.
Every “technique” you decide to use must have a story purpose. Great directors and storytellers check themselves by asking, “ Is it motivated?” Does the technical element or the edit you are adding make sense in the arc of the story? Or does it get in the way?
Simplify, simplify, simplify!! If something does not clarify what you are saying – dump it!
For now, take a look at your last promotional piece and rate it on a scale of one to five where 1 represents “Look at that technology – the content’s lost” and 5 represents “Is there technology here? I can’t see it”.
Here is your MomentStorm challenge of the week. Take your best at making the technology behind your next web promotion invisible. Give your audience the gift of getting lost in your message.
You can do it!
It takes a little more energy than turning up the volume. The results will be worth it.