Someone asked me this question this week while I was giving my passionate thoughts on what creative should look like in a :30 TV spot. After preaching about how price must dominate the screen and you only run one offer per spot tied around a unique sale event they continued to say that’s what they’d been doing and it wasn’t working.
I told them to show me a couple of their recent TV spots. They were exactly what I expected. The spots featured big pictures of an empty dealership front with no customers, cars riding down roads in the mountains (like you would expect from a factory ad) and the prices on screen were so small I had to squint my eyes to see them on a computer. Full disclosure, this was not a highline store but a major volume brand.
I then played a few of my spots. One had a space shuttle taking off in the beginning. Another had a ninja with a samurai sword cutting a payment in half. One even had a fire breather with the flames erupting into the numbers. None of my spots showed any running footage had only prices and payments that were full screen. This dealer was kind of in shock. Maybe it was the ads or just how bizarre of concepts I used to get across the point of a great price in the ads. Regardless he said, “I guess your spots have more punch.”
That is it. Tier 3 creative needs punch. It needs something that reaches through the screen and grabs someone out of their living room and catches their attention. You have heard of cutting through the clutter with an ad, but how about straight up making peoples mouths drop in sheer wonder of what is on screen.
I have a wife and three young kids. At my house either cartoons are on TV or we are watching something that she or I prefer which leaves the other four people in the room doing something else with their attention. This is why you have to create the bold and harness the bizarre to make an ad that truly will deliver you next day traffic.
John Paul Strong
John Paul Strong combines his two decades of automotive marketing experience with a team of more than 140 professionals as owner and CEO of Strong Automotive Merchandising.