eye + ear catching messages

This past Sunday was the Super Bowl – of advertising. The ads are considered the cream of the crop in the advertising world. So what, if anything, can we learn from those ads and those advertisers?

In general, effective messaging shares a number of key attributes:

  • the message fits the intended audience (I’m guessing a lot of dog owners watch football)
  • it stands out from the other messages in the space (Bueller? Bueller?)
  • the message is clear (what were those dogs barking about?)
  • the message is memorable (Clint Eastwood’s Chrysler halftime ad – YAY America)
  • the message helps define the brand (Drew Brees + son for Chase Quickpay, better than the showing friends splitting the dinner check)
  • the message is free of silly mistakes (I honestly didn’t notice any, let’s hope not)

This is common sense, right? Still, how many times does our ‘message’ in proposals, resumes, emails, even live conversations, does our message truly measure up? We’ve become lazy, relying on boilerplate, corporate-speak that is irrelevant at best.

What’s Next? It’s not just in business communications where we can improve our message, but all of our communications: from simple emails (watch out for ‘your’ versus ‘you’re”), to resumes (is yours up to date, does it have a human voice), to complex proposals (did you spell the client’s name right, did you come right out and tell them why you’re the best). Starting today, make sure that whatever you say or write catches the eye + ear of the audience. Before you deliver it, run it through the checklist above.