March 14, 2008

Throughout my 20 year experience in marketing and advertising there has been one consistent issue we have all had to deal with: Too much information to communicate.

Although the human mind is capable of multitasking and of receiving thousands of messages daily, it tends to register one key fact per experience.

We remember one key physical aspect of people we meet, we immediately recall one key event from a trip or vacation we took, when asked to think of a number, one immediately comes to mind, the same with a color.

This same concept applies to advertising as well. We have heard before that consumers recall ONE thing from an ad in turn, we as advertisers create briefs that have a ‘single minded idea’ we want to register.

The Problem: We usually wrap that single minded idea around with 3-5 other messages. And many other times, that single minded idea is ‘divided’ into 2-3 sub-ideas.

We convince ourselves (and our clients) that we’re still focused on that single minded idea, when in reality we have created an ad with various messages.

So much for the ONE idea.

The result is usually advertising that may entertain the consumer, but will not register a brand building thought with them - because to do that it would have to be based on ONE idea that clearly connects with the brand and the consumer.

Think about it - brands that are based on one idea are usually leader brands.

When the following brands are mentioned, we will immediately think of one thing - and we all think of the same ONE thing that tells us many of that brands‚ benefits:

- Google ˆ the multi-color logo
- Microsoft ˆ the window logo
- Coca-Cola ˆ the color red and/or the curved bottle
- Marlboro ˆ cowboy
- McDonald's ˆ the yellow arches
- Apple ˆ the apple logo
- UPS ˆ the color brown
- Starbucks ˆ the green logo
- Nike ˆ the swoosh

When we try this exercise with weaker brands we see that our thoughts are multiplied (many thoughts come to mind) or even contradictory thoughts will come to mind.

So what does it mean?

It means that we need to apply a ‘ONE Marketing’ concept.

The ultimate goal of ONE Marketing is to have your brand be recognized by the masses by one idea (one ownable thought, mark, logo, color, sound, etc.) and the test of that comes when asked to think of your brand, the masses will all think of that same ONE idea.
So what to do?

Keep your advertising single minded ˆ they will only remember one thing, two at the most why add 3-4 elements?

Keep that ONE message consistent ˆ it is organically part of your brand.

Don’t push it ˆ let consumers accept and adopt that ONE idea. If it’s organically engrained in your communication they will eventually adopt it.

Make it personal ˆ another aspect of ONE Marketing is in talking to the masses on a one-to-one level. Create your advertising as if you were talking to someone sitting in front of you.

The outcome?

A stronger, more universally recognized, and recognized for the right reasons brand.

By: Enrique R. Turegano
enrique@onac.com

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