noticing ads is exactly what people don't do

A couple of weeks ago the wife and I went to visit some friends just north of Birmingham, and for my sins, I decided to drive. 

There's a particular stretch of the M5, just before the exit for West Bromwich, where there is probably twenty or so billboards, made up of both traditional and digital formats. And despite travelling at the best part of 70mph, being 'in the business' means I can't help but take in the messages that are around me. Critiquing the executions in my head, seeing what ideas I could nick.

Some were good, some average, and some definitely poor. Yet the one thing I was doing was looking at them. After we'd passed the section, I asked my wife which ad she liked best, and it turns out she hadn't even seen any ads yet alone liked any of them.

How could she not see them? Whilst she sat in the passenger seat watching the world go by there were twenty great big images trying to sell her stuff, yet she didn't notice a single one.

A stab in the heart to the marketers of those twenty brands who (I would like to wager) all assumed that normal, everyday people like my wife, notice their advertising.

But notice advertising is exactly what everyday people don't do. In all honesty, how many ads can you remember from yesterday? One or two at best out of the hundreds you were exposed to. That's an awful lot of wasted budget from an awful lot of brands.

So just remember to put five simple words nice and big on every brief you issue - 'This work must get noticed' and at least you'll give your brand a chance to succeed.