Path to Purchase Part 4: Trigger Warning

Path to Purchase Part 4: Trigger Warning

Why do you pay attention to an ad?

Nobody knows. Lots of science has gone into finding out. Lots of testing. Lots of money.

Let’s leave it at this… nobody knows. But sometimes you do notice an ad. At Rinck, we call these micro-moments. When you are susceptible to advertising messaging for whatever reason.

You’ve been triggered.

In the good old days of the 50s, 60s, etc., that was enough. The ad alone made you trust the brand and you likely made your decision based on what brand advertised the best to your way of thinking. Sears had products you needed, you trusted Sears just fine, and you bought what you could afford. Ford made fine cars, as did GM. You made your choice and bought what you could afford.

Now… not so much. Maybe you consciously see the ad, maybe not. Maybe there is a traditional media ad you also see. Maybe a billboard. You then need to find out more. You might search. For a website. Reviews. Articles. Then you shop. On Amazon, Wal-Mart, Best Buy, or Dick’s. Maybe you go to the store to showroom the product… see how much it weighs, other colors, alternatives. Then you are served retargeting ads, conquest ads.

Maybe you buy. But it’s a lot of work just to get you here.

And then, you might not like the product. At which point, you have a whole new emotion. You’re pissed. At the time you spent, the money you spent, the company, their logo, the parents that birthed them… and yourself. And people are going to know about it.

Here is what we now know. Using data, we are getting a better look at those who have been exposed to an ad and their future behavior. Up to 90% of the people who have been EXPOSED to the ad take action later. The ads are “working” even though it is hard, but not impossible, to provide attribution to the ad, much less final click attribution.

In the article Technological Change, I said we are learning the wrong lessons. Here is one. If people are consciously or subconsciously acting after exposure the ad, the issue isn’t sending them more (cheap,) it’s making the ones we do display work harder. In alignment across media. It’s not the number of punched thrown, it’s the effectiveness of the punch or punches.

We call this the trigger. While the trigger can be a life change of some sort, (a promotion, a baby, a new puppy, car broke down,) it can also be an ad.

An ad can provide the trigger to “find out more.” In 2018 and 2019, the very best DTC brands (Direct to Consumer) are triggering consumers to find out more. Four days ago, I watched a 10-minute YouTube ad. Very compelling message on a subject where I have skipped dozens… hundreds… of other ads. They got me. Triggered me to find out more.

So how to throw a more effective punch? How to show a more effective ad to a prospect? How do you get a consumer to notice?

The first thing that needs to happen is understand what we want the ad to do. It has one job.

That’s next.

Peter Rinck


Peter Rinck

Chief Executive Officer