Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Save Money with Contrasting Ad Context

EAT24—an online enterprise designed to link prospects for home delivery of food with restaurants in the neighborhood that deliver food—is bragging about their success advertising on pornography sites. In fact, to the surprise of the company, about 90% of the customers arriving via the porn site ads ordered complete meals, a rate significantly higher than for customers arriving via other routes.
     Sexual cues do enhance desires not only for sex, but also for gustatory pleasures, so perhaps the EAT24 folks shouldn’t have been so surprised. Yet it is surprise which may account for the effectiveness of the campaign. As EAT24 points out in their blog posting, almost all ads on porn websites are for more porn. An ad for food drew attention because of the contrasting context.
     Moreover, EAT24 was able to advertise on the porn sites at a much lower cost per 1,000 impressions than on Google, Facebook, or Twitter. Again, it’s because of the neighborhood.
     A parallel finding was in research out of Hofstra University and Saint Louis University which explored the effects of billboard location on the beliefs consumers formed about the advertised product or service, the consumers’ positive or negative feelings about the item, and the consumers’ intentions to purchase the item.
     Some stores shy away from having billboards in low-rent districts because of concerns that consumers will then see the store as low quality. The research found this not to be true. The implication for retailers: When using outdoor advertising, choose the locations based on traffic patterns, not by the quality of the neighborhood where the billboard is positioned. The contrast between the ad content and the ad location could bring extra attention at a bargain price.
     Researchers at Dresden University of Technology and University of Kiel looked at the effects of other ways to spring surprise ads: Ambient media. These use contexts like the inside doors of toilet stalls, hanging straps on buses, and the gas bags of hot air balloons. The studies of about 2,500 passersby and 300 survey respondents over a two-year period found that an unexpected contrast between the ad and context caused the consumer to resolve an inconsistency. In turn, this brought attention to the ad and elicited positive feelings toward it.
     The unexpected contrast must not be unpleasant, though. A low-rent neighborhood will work for the billboard, but a dangerously violent one probably wouldn’t, for instance.

Click below for more: 
Flex Your Understanding of Time Perceptions 
Attend to Context When Advertising
Tease with Incongruities

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