No matter how grand your client’s designs are, it is an absolute guarantee that the product or service they are promoting will not enjoy a market that extends to every single person on the planet.
And so it is no good, therefore, to try and create an accompanying promotional video that will also strive to please everybody – because you can’t, and it won’t. In fact, the likelihood is that in trying to charm every man, woman and child in the world, you will actually end up with a promo that is so generic that you will alienate everyone. For example, I refer you to the now infamous Samsung advert for the 840 EVO Series – in trying to show the broadness of the device’s appeal, this promo resorts to some rather questionable stereotypes, thusly alienating the very demographics that it’s supposed to be targeting.
Cringeworthy, isn’t it? You will probably not be surprised to learn that the video was pulled. It’s just awful.
Despite the fact that the promo is professionally shot, edited and finished (Samsung do have a rather large advertising budget, I’m sure), the fact is that it’s still just a plain pitch promo. It’s obvious, patronising, poorly acted, and actually quite sexist to boot.
The narrative is boring and predictable: “Sick of your computer taking too long to load? Try this.” That’s the essence of it. And how many times have we seen and heard that before? Countless, and we’re bored of it.
For sure, everyone and their granny has a computer in this day and age – and we would all like our machines to run faster and more reliably, whether, indeed, we use them for work or play. But creating one single video that attempts to resonate emotionally with young, old, professional, non-professional, men, women, and everyone in between, is never going to work. Not in a million years.
Identifying Your Market
Of course, your client may not have a service or product to peddle that has such a naturally wide user-base as a computer. They may be selling roller blades or stairlifts or sanitary products – in which case you will all have pretty clear target markets in your sights.
But, then again, the intended market might not be quite as cut and dry. Perhaps your client is the proprietor of a restaurant, sells a mobile app, or is in the real estate game. In these instances, narrowing down a potential customer base to one particular demographic might be a little trickier and you might have to dig deeper to find out just what your target market is.
Either way, when it comes to making targeted promotional videos, it is nonetheless absolutely imperative that you focus on one particular demographic only – even if this means that it’s necessary to create more than one video.
You will have seen your fair share of promos in your time I’m sure. Some of them may have inspired you to go out and purchase the product – and if they did, then that will probably be because you will have been identified as part of a target market, and the ad in question will have been specifically produced to appeal to you and people like you.
Similarly, you will also have watched some targeted promotional videos that left you scratching your head as to how on Earth what you just witnessed would ever inspire someone to go out and buy that particular service or product. Well, in those cases, you are not meant to “get” the advert. You will not be part of the market segment that is being targeted. And, if you take a moment to think about it, this will probably make perfect sense – for the chances are you wouldn’t ever buy the thing even if it were the best promotional video that you’ve ever seen.
Targeted Market Videos
A target market is a defined demographic that it is deemed will be most likely to buy a company’s service or product. The demographic in question will normally have similar needs.
Let’s take alcohol products for instance. A company that produces cheap lagers will probably be looking at ways that they can target younger drinkers, such as students, who, although having less expendable income to set aside for alcohol, nonetheless still want to partake in the joys of a partying lifestyle and culture.
Take a look at this promotional video from Foster’s.
What’s so clever about this promo is that it is clearly targeting young male drinkers – both students (and the reference to the volatility of the financial market is a very subtle way to promote the idea that it’s best to save money on things (like booze) where you can) and non-students. But, importantly, it is not alienating either demographic.
The conversation that the students are having in Cardiff is rather intellectual – thus proving that you don’t just have to be a lout to drink cheap lager. But, the topic is then taken up by the non-students back in Australia – thus proving that you don’t have to be a student in order to be intellectual. And you can both enjoy a cheap lager. Genius.
Of course, it’s not just young men who enjoy a drink, and so some companies manufacture other alcoholic products, which are more refined and therefore more expensive. The promotional videos from these producers will reflect this, as they will clearly define their target market to be the older alcohol consumer, who is more interested in the quality of the product than its cheapness.
By contrast to Foster’s promo, take a look at this from The Glenlivet:
You can see how this video has not been produced to target young male student drinkers, but rather an older male drinking market. The focus here is on the quality of the product, and the hard work that goes into making it so good (which will appeal to all those hard working men out there who enjoy a drop of well-deserved quality single malt when the day is done).
Some of you who will be reading this article simply will not “get” the Foster’s promo – it just won’t make you want to head out to the local boozer and order a pint. Others, similarly, will not get The Glenlivet offering – and you’re not supposed to, for whiskey is probably not your favoured poison anyway.
Gaining Market Share
No, the point of both of these promotional videos is to try and get more of the respective target market segments to choose their product over any competitors’.
People who drink cheap lager on a night out are not the same people who enjoy a little snifter of whiskey after work – so there’s no point in trying to tailor a promo that would appeal to that particular demographic. It would be a waste of time, money and resources.
The lesson here is that when it comes to scripting your client’s promotional video, the aim is not to try and make it as broadly appealing as possible, but rather to have a very clear focus on exactly whom it is that will most likely be buying the product, and aim your creative energies directly at those people, and no one else.
What promos have you seen that get the targeting spot on? What about those that completely miss the mark? Please share your thoughts and links in the comments below.