It can be hard to pinpoint exactly what makes an ad or a piece of content memorable or what helps you stand out in a crowd. There’s generally some storytelling involved that makes an emotional connection, but there’s also often a certain something. It might be a clever twist, an especially chic look, or a moment of realization, but it makes your marketing stand out.
Manufacturing that something may take some time, but while you’re brainstorming, here are other important elements:
Tell a Story
Since the beginning of recorded history, people have recognized that the preferred way to learn anything, whether it’s a moral lesson or a set of product features, is through a story. Don’t lose your audience with a dull recitation of your product features. Instead, grab their attention with a version of “Once upon a time…” you choose.
Be Brand Consistent
In order to be memorable in a beneficial way, your ad must consistently tell your brand message. For instance, Geico has found hundreds of ways to be funny, but it’s always the gecko delivering the punchline. When you consider your concept, think about whether it passes the logo test. In other words, would it still work if you swapped out your logo for a competitor’s? If so, start over. It needs to be uniquely yours.
Even if you’re telling a compelling story, the message of the story should not be, “Have you heard how great we are?” It’s always about the value you bring to the consumer. Your message should tell the audience what problems you’ll solve and what challenges you’ll address, highlighting the benefit to the buyer.
Did you know that State Farm has been like a good neighbor since 1971? The concept of being a neighbor — a good, reliable, and trustworthy neighbor — is timeless. Or think about the extensive flexibility that came with the “Got Milk?” campaign. Celebrities were lining up to wear a milk mustache and put their own stamp on the instantly-recognizable and often-imitated ads.
An evergreen piece of marketing content holds up over time and offers flexibility for making multiple editions of the piece in a series.
Get Back to Basics
The heart of every marketing effort is an emotional connection. That means something different for every industry and company. Think about the kinds of emotional needs your product or service might meet, such as security, freedom, a desire to be unique or affluent. These are powerful emotions, and a good piece of content will form a connection through them.
That Extra Something
It might be an “aha!” moment or a twist that only customers that know your brand will get, but there should be a special quality to the ad that makes it memorable. You might have a touch of humor or a look from the actor into the camera that’s so subtly suggestive that people wonder if they really saw it.
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