Talking Heads: Turn Them Off!
By Shannon Rentner, Director, PR, Servigistics
Interactive Marketing is cool, innovative, slick, forward-thinking, and creative. B2C companies that employ interactive marketing on their websites, in their ad campaigns, marketing collateral, etc. make companies with static websites and non-interactive collateral [what is the opposite of interactive?] look like Sunday school teachers from the 1970’s using flannel boards to illustrate Bible stories.
Consider some of these inventive examples of interactive marketing:
- Real women’s stories about financial planning for Wachovia Securities. What a refreshing way to present the client case study: http://www.planforwhatsnext.com/
- Remember Harold and the Purple Crayon? UPS tapped this magical marker idea for their whiteboard campaign where the long-haired guy illustrates what “brown can do for you”: http://whiteboard.ups.com/
- What if you live to be 100? How will you take care of yourself? Genworth Financial created the Genworth100, a website that featured the oral history of several centenarians as a way to pitch their financial planning services.
It’s entertaining, eye-catching, fun and informative.
But for B2B transactions, turn off the talking head.
When I’m sitting at my computer at the office doing research or evaluating potential vendors, I want the flannel board approach - let’s be old school: get me right to the point - something I can quickly read and process. Clear, Concise, and Direct.
Don’t make me sit there and listen to some dumb talking head spewing fluff. When I want a client case study, I’ll click on it and then it better be a good story illustrating what the potential vendor can do. Otherwise, I’ve lost patience and will move on to the next vendor.
How does this relate to service?
The other day I was driving home from work and saw a car with ricohteknoforce emblazoned across the side and rear. So, when I returned to work, I decided to visit the website to see if this was another Geek Squad post-sale service play. The answer: yes and no - more of a B2B IT outsourcing play. Nevertheless, I was completely rattled by the talking man. I just wanted to navigate the page to see what Ricohteknoforce offers. http://www.ricohteknoforce.com/
Seriously, no one listens to it. So just save him for later. If I want to hear someone speak to me, allow me to click on it - don’t throw him at me while I’m sitting in an open office and pressed for time. Consumers, on the other hand, have the time and privacy away from work to enjoy such leisure viewing and listening activities. I don’t.
But I also rip off the wrapping paper from my presents rather than slowly untying a bow, unpeeling tape, and neatly unfolding the pretty paper. Those people drive me nuts.
What do you think?