Advertising Is Dead… We Killed It!…

When I said “we”, I mean you and me… Yes, you too… Advertising as we know it, is dead. And no amount of denial will bring it back to life. But when did it happen, and how exactly did it happen?

Bet you can’t wait to click on the “Skip Ads” to get to the video that you wanted to watch, right? – Screen grab from a YouTube video… Any video…

First Up, What’s Advertising In A Nutshell

When somebody mentions advertising, an image immediately comes to mind. It could be a printed ad, as in newspapers and magazines, electronic ad, as in TV and cinema, and web-based ads, as in ad banners in websites. It’s basically a media space, whereby any client can purchase or rent, to display their message. Usually to introduce or promote their products or services. The problem is, and there definitely is one, is that nobody in their right mind would purposefully seek out and consume advertisements.

Herein lies advertising’s most important feature. Advertisements do not exist on its own. It basically hitches a ride on a content that people actually seeks out and consume. It’s basically there in the hope that whoever who’s consuming the content, will inadvertently be exposed to the advertisement as well.

When reading newspapers, bam, there’s an ad right next to the column that you’re reading. Halfway through your favourite primetime sitcom, bam, you’re forced to sit through “messages from the sponsors”. Even when scrolling down the website, bam, ad banner smack in between the article that you were reading. Or worse, the whole website blurs out in the background, and a whole new ad window pops in… Yup, advertisements are everywhere.

Does That Mean Advertising Is Bad?

Well, advertising serves a purpose, that is to introduce products and services, offered by “the sponsors”. The concept of advertising is neither “good” nor “bad”. It’s pretty much neutral. The messages carried across by advertisements are just that – messages. But in a world of competing businesses all vying for the same slice of an ever shrinking attention span, their messages can get pretty bold, not to mention very persistent. Add that to being bombarded with ads after ads, while consuming the actual contents, it can get pretty annoying.

But that’s the price we have to pay to consume the actual contents, right? I mean, somebody’s gotta pay the newspaper to report the news, and for the cinemas to maintain their operational costs, right?… Well yeah, that’s true… So we suck it up, and continue to endure being bombarded with the advertisements. Just like the one right below here…

Chronic Advertisement Blindness Syndrome

Through repeated exposure of being bombarded with advertisements, we’ve somehow evolved the ability to “turn a blind eye” to any advertisements. Yes, you, me, and everybody else in the civilised modern world who’re constantly seeking to fulfil our content craving.

Don’t believe me?… Ever realised that you don’t really know what the advertisement next to the article was all about when reading about your dream Ferrari in your favourite car magazine? Or how you pace around impatiently while waiting for the “Skip Ads” to light up while watching a YouTube video? Or even how you get up, go to the fridge to grab a bite, whenever the the commercial break comes on during your favourite miniseries on TV?

Did you realise that you’ve unconsciously skipped all the advertisements that are printed in between the columns of the editorial? – Image designed by / Freepik

That’s right, we’ve all somehow developed this “superpower”. A power to be able to discern what’s the actual content that we want to consume, and what’s not… Well, that “what’s not” is basically just ads. For the lack of a better word, we shall call this the Chronic Advertisement Blindness Syndrome, or CABS for short.

Wait A Minute… Advertising Isn’t Cheap!…

That’s right, ad production costs a bomb, especially when you engage a reputable ad agency to produce it for you. And if you think ad production cost is expensive, well, let me introduce you to buying media space… That’s right, you literary have to pay for the privilege to publish your ad on your chosen platform. Having an advertisement content is useless if you have no platform to publish it on. You won’t be able to blast it out to your intended audience without a platform… any platform…

But if what’s mentioned above is all true, then all your money spent on it will be wasted!… If nobody even pays attention to your ad, then your ad is pretty much useless… And that’s pretty much what’s happening out there in the real world.

But the human species is a pretty resilient bunch. The more you tell them that they can’t do something, the more they’ll rebound, and do it even harder than before. The less people pay attention to their published ads, the more they’ll design louder, blindingly flashy colours and moving animation to catch your attention. But the more flashy and catchy these newer ads are, the more repulsed the audience is with it. It’s basically the harder you try to hold on to their attention, the further away they’ll push you.

The End Is Nigh, The Media World Is Dead

If advertising is dead, then no businesses in their right mind would want to place advertisements in the media. And if businesses don’t buy media space with any media platforms, then media as we know it, is essentially dead… And the whole world will turn to doom and gloom in mourning…

It’s the end of the world as we know it. Time to brush up our hunting and gathering skills. It’ll come in useful very soon. – Image designed by macrovector / Freepik

It’s time for the world of media, and civilisation as a whole, to regress into another dark age. An age where there’ll be no news, no movies, no TV shows, no blogs and websites, and no content whatsoever. If nobody is going to buy media space to advertise, then nobody will pay for the content creation, and by default, nobody will set up a platform to host them on. It’s the time when the only content you’ll get is the local gossip at the local morning market where you live…

But Wait… There’s An Alternative Solution…

There actually is a solution to all these doom and gloom, just not in the way that you might think it to be. If you strip down all the bells and whistles, right down to the very core, what’s left is the message that you want to convey. And all you want to do is to simply convey this message across to your audience… That’s all…

Think about it – do you really need to dress this message up into an advertisement just to spread it out?… There are other methods of doing it. And we shall explore further how to have both the cake and eat it at the same time in the next article.

One Reply to “Advertising Is Dead… We Killed It!…”

  1. Pingback: Copywriters Are A Dime A Dozen - Solarex Imaging

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