Wednesday, March 5, 2014

BIG’s Blog: That’s Right, My Attention Span has been Interrupted

The headline screamed, Four of Five American Consumers Ignore Ads Most Frequently.

Is this news to you?

Honestly, outside of sports, most notably the Super Bowl, who still watches television shows at the actual time they air?

I got ya, didn’t I?

For some of you your first reaction was, “Well, I still watch TV shows at the broadcast times.” Of course you do, because you're closer to my age (I’m 61) than the vast number of people in our population today. We are the one in five that the above headline ISN’T talking about. But you need to know that the vast number of people, including the majority of my readership, DVR most TV shows to playback at a more convenient time.

Even most of us older baby boomers have gotten a DVR in the last few years and are recording shows and signing up for streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Video Service.

More people are using their DVR to record shows and watch them when they want … AND … when they watch them they blast (my word for fast-forwarding) through the commercials.


Because we don’t want to be “interrupted” by advertising, whether it’s TV commercials, pop-up ads on the Internet, phone calls at dinnertime, the friendly store clerk asking “may I help you,” or … direct mail. Yes, to younger people, nonprofit direct mail appeals are considered an interruption.

I write this blog you are reading. People either find it valuable or not. It is their choice. I don’t hold a gun to their head to read it. It doesn’t pop-up obnoxiously … you actually have to want to read it. And, if at some point you want to unsubscribe … you can … your CHOICE.

People’s behaviors have changed toward what they consider an interruption. Why? Well, the main “wonderful” culprits are the search engines such as Bing, Yahoo, and, of course, Google. We don’t want to be interrupted and sold; we will search out our own information and answers. WE ARE NOW IN CONTROL!

You MUST re-think how you go about generating new supporters. Sending out pleading letters works for my 86-year-old mother, but does NOTHING for my 50-something year old wife.

We don’t want to be interrupted by anyone’s message … including yours … or mine.

First, build the relationship … then they will take your call or open your email.  

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