Is advertising becoming too omnipresent for comfort?
Imagine you are watching a Hindi daily soap on TV. Then unfolds a scene where a character looks visibly lost and disturbed. Her sister-in-law enters the room and concerned about her she asks, ‘Bhabhi sab kuch theek hai na?’ The disturbed lady explains ‘Unka birthday nazdeek aa raha hai aur samajh nahi aa raha kya doon.’ Our solution-oriented and smart sister-in-law suggests her to gift the latest laptop model by a famous brand to her husband; and she goes on to explain its features. The disturbed lady now looks delighted as her problem is solved while the producers of the show have earned a handsome amount by adding that subplot to the episode. On the other hand, the brand has managed to convince its audience about their amazing features in a way that every woman watching that episode has already thanked their favorite bahu for sharing her pearls of wisdom.
This, of course, is not new to us. Although, we never realized exactly how and when advertising crossed the boundary between a dedicated commercial break slot and a prime slot. Over the last few years, it has slowly woven its web across important spaces in our lives. We are driving leisurely and an RJ casually mentions a brand. An influential celebrity randomly tweets how much he likes a certain drink. A blogger enlightens us that she uses only a specific phone camera for her posts. Even Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram have opened their doors to paid ads. If you think you will skip ads during a movie interval by stepping out to get popcorn, then these brands have ensured that you notice them while watching the movie. And who can forget the ‘Fevicol Se’ song?
This kind of presence surely helps a brand in carefully filtering and targeting its prospective users. The communication is more direct and intimate without sounding artificial. Which is why brands are now trying to explore more channels and ways to reaching out. If planned properly, these in-your-face approaches work effectively and improve the brand recall .
On the contrary, there is also a risk of getting ignored as people get immune to something that exists so freely. These promotions might lose their charm unless new media and innovations are introduced to the mix. With brands getting closer and closer to its audience, it won’t be surprising if soon personal spaces will be up for paid advertising. It seems advertisers are no more hidden persuaders. Rather they are turning into unapologetic intruders. What do you think – where is it going?