Friday, January 4, 2013

Advertising to our intelligence

Advertising interests me.  Sometimes, I find ads clever… Sometimes I find ads funny.  Sometimes, I find advertising downright insulting to my intelligence.

Here's an example of an old fashioned bit of advertising where the advertisers spent a little time to come up with something very simple, but that actually makes you use your brain cells in order to make the advert work.

Today, I saw this (http://redboard.rogers.com/2012/a-nation-of-nomophobes-83-of-canadians-smartphone-users-take-their-devices-to-the-bathroom-51-to-bed/) infographic from Rogers on twitter.  What it purports to be is a survey that amongst other things tells the reader what happened in 2012 and makes predictions for the coming year.  I guess, it's there to make an impression on the reader like Rogers knows what they're talking about when it comes to mobile phones.

The thing about advertising and numbers is you can apply some basic common sense and math and see the other side of the coin.  For instance, if a survey said that 45% of people skip breakfast in the morning, you can safely assume that it's highly likely that 55% had some form of food in the morning.

So applying this simple common sense to the advert from rogers, what wonderful revelations do we see?

Apparently, 90% of people didn't fall in love with any bit of Siri, or download a racy novel to their mobile device.  The majority of us didn't catch Gangnam Style on YouTube either.  Most shockingly, the majority of us don't think that in 5 years babies will be using technology before they can walk and talk.

Rogers has really got it's finger on the pulse here, right?  I'm being sarcastic, of course.

The statistics are just common sense.  If you're going to publish a mobile survey, at least pick questions that are interesting because they have unexpected answers or educating to the reader.  Pushing this type of advertising is almost insulting to our collective intelligence because it's just fodder with a logo on it.

Mind you, this is coming from a cellphone carrier that already advertised previously that they have a service that was "Beyond 4G", so it's quite obvious that they already think we can be bamboozled easily.