I’m a big fan of intelligent marketing. You know, giving the customer credit for being intelligent, not treating him/her like a total dunce. And using facts and information to make a persuasive case for why you should buy.
I hate ads that are annoying, intrusive and insulting. (Just like you, I suspect.) So I was delighted when PC World recently spotlighted the Ten Most Annoying, Frustrating, Irritating, and Sinister Online Ads. Author Tom Spring nails ’em:
“Some of these ads flash, blink, vibrate, and somersault around your browser window. Others expand, pop open a window (even if you have a pop-up blocker), and play sounds or video. The most sinister don’t appear to do anything at all and quietly attempt to hijack your PC.”
Call me old fashioned, but pissing off prospects doesn’t seem like a smart way to do business. Sure, you might lure in a few suckers — once — but it’s no way to build a long-term relationship.
The article even has the guts to mention annoying ads on their own website.
“I asked one advertising insider (who didn’t want to be identified) if he would confirm my suspicion that some advertisers intentionally make it impossible to find the Close button. His response? ‘Of course they do. These advertisers know they are getting away with something. And that ‘something’ is not about making your life easier.'”
That’s why I urge my clients to attract clients by offering them information of value — rather than using old-fashioned marketing tricks. Would-be customers want to study and learn what makes one product or service better than its competitors. And the closer they are to a buying decision, the more eager they are to learn, and the more details they want. After all, their goal is to make a decision, place their order, and move on to the next thing. Why not give them the facts and figures they want?
PS: If you use Firefox with the AdBlock Plus extension, you may never even have seen these aggravating ads. (grin)