It’s good to be able to believe what we read and see, but experience teaches us not to trust everything. In the world of marketing, advertising and PR, colours can often appear brighter, flavours more tempting and experiences more exciting than in the real world or so it seems . . . until we make a reality check.
Do airline adverts match up to the experience of being squeezed into a Smarties tube? Do car adverts reflect those notorious intermittent faults that main dealers can’t track even with their hi-tech diagnostics programs? Does this year’s new toothpaste taste any different from the new toothpaste of last year and every year before that?
Have to make a quick cynicism adjustment here. Ah, that’s better.
But is it really possible to create promotional material that is genuine, truly representative of the product or service and still interesting enough to excite customers?
Yes, although sometimes advertisers can get too close to their products. After the market research, the product development and design, the brand creation, it can be difficult not to get excited. After all, if you don’t believe in your product, why should your customers? But it’s important to remember that your product could be just one of a dozen, hundreds or thousands of similar products on the market.
Just saying a product is exciting, innovative or better won’t make it any of these. If you want to say it’s better, faster, more efficient, then prove it. Give real examples backed by data. Get customers to test it and give their opinions. If they say it is better, that’s great.
Does it matter? Will anyone notice? They probably will and customers don’t like to be tricked, deceived or misled, even if you genuinely believe your product beats all the competition. Both you and your customers are likely to have greater confidence in your product when you back up your claims and it could even give you an edge over competitors whose claims are vague and unproven.
So if you make a claim for a product, prove it.