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Leveraging conversations



When I write, I like to use examples, quotes and recount experiences I have had. But I very rarely have to think of an example or a quote or an experience that fits the context. It almost always springs up right on cue. Even when I'm talking to someone, references to things I have seen, read, experienced come quite naturally. But quite obviously, these recollections constitute only a minor subset of my past interactions.

I might have watched certain advertisements millions of times, watched several seasons of a TV series or listened to a song a thousand times, but that's not enough for them to make me recollect them in time for usage in the context I'm currently in.

Only those that have had an impact on me surface to the top of my head or the tip of my tongue in time.

Advertisers strive for recollection. This was a reasonable target to aim for when the media that people were exposed to were few. If there was a remarkable ad during the half time of a football game, there would definitely be conversation in the office cafeteria that goes like 'Did you watch that ad last night?'.

One remarkable ad was good enough in this scenario.

But today, every person is exposed to multiple media and with the advent of personalized advertising, there is a high probability that the ad watched by one was different from that watched by others. So there is no cafeteria conversation around it even if it was remarkable.

This takes out the second crucial step from the impact-generation process of an advertisement.

When one sees a remarkable ad, she has to either talk about it or be put in a scenario where she hears/sees something that validates the claim in the ad. If not, the ad is soon forgotten.

There is not enough room for validation in a highly personalized advertising strategy. There has to be a way to put the target audience through a validation process. Since it is easy to find out who a person most talks to, either on Facebook or Whatsapp or any other platform, it perhaps makes more sense to show the same ad to these people who talk to each other often even if they all do not fit into the description of the target audience.

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