Ambient Advertising Essay

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Ambient Advertising- How long will it survive

Authored by: Team Celeritas
Chinmay Sohoni Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, Delhi chinmaysohoni@gmail.com Vini Soni Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, Delhi vinisoni06@gmail.com

am·bi·ent (ām'bē-ənt) adj. Surrounding; encircling: ambient sound; ambient air. ad·ver·tis·ing (ād'vər-tī'zĭng) noun. The activity of attracting public attention to a product or business, by paid announcements in the print, broadcast, or electronic media. Most of the definitions of Ambient Advertising define it as a form of advertising that is covered in “outdoor non-regular media”. It’s an advert that is not delivered through conventional medium of television, radio, print etc. An Ambient Advertisement would use a sidewalk for example, rather than using a billboard. Quite simply put, an advertisement that is a part of the surroundings, a part of the ambience is well, ambient advertisement. But for effectiveness ambient advertising goes one step further as to the fact that not only is it part of the ambience, it needs to blend in with the media as well. And there lies the tricky part, the advert needs to be noticed and be a part of the background, and that’s where the Ambient Advertising has to unleash its creative power. Ambient Advertising is  Covered by non-regular media, in most regular but unexpected places/objects  It is Innovative; captures the eyeballs, stirs the imagination  Blends with the environment, yet gets the attention  Relies on word-of-mouth publicity

Traditional advertising becoming a BIG bore?
In recent years (recent in Indian context, about a decade old in western reference), there have been many debates regarding the effectiveness of the regular media in delivering advertisements. The consumer has become immune to the advertisements in newspapers and magazines. The novelty of cable television has worn off and so has the glitzy advertisements. The over-exposure has brought in a new change in the consumer, which dictates which advertisement to be seen and which instantly skipped. The over-exposure has killed the effectiveness of the advertising, and that’s the harsh truth. So how bad really is this “over-exposure” to advertising? Consider this, on an average a regular current affairs weekly has about 18-20 full page advertisements in a 70 odd page magazine, not counting the pullouts, cover pages, part-page adverts, “special features” et al. That’s nearly 30% of the magazine space! This number jumps, understandably, to over 40% for a lifestyle/fashion magazine. Television advertisement figures tell a similar story. In 2007, the total ad duration was 4006 lakh seconds (The Marketing Whitebook 2009-10), up 31% from 2006 figures. The advertisement clutter reached new highs and still going up. To gauge consumer immunity towards regular advertising, we conducted an online survey regarding their attitude regarding advertising. The numbers that came in were hardly surprising. 20% of the respondents always switched channels during the ad breaks, 38% switched 8 times out of 10 and 30% changed the channel 5-6 times out of 10. What does this translate to? A whopping 88% of the television viewers preferred not to see the advertisements over seeing it! And what’s more, nearly 60% of the audience nearly always flipped the channel. All hail the power of TV remote! Of those who did see the advertisements (whenever they did), the two main reasons were cited as creativity quotient of the advertisements and update about a new product launch, both factors

quoted by 62% of our respondents. 25% of the respondents saw an advert because they were planning to buy the product in future, while only 15% saw it of a product they are currently using. The celebrity factor seems to have taken a hit as only 13% respondents cited the reason as their favourite celebrity endorser and no one really wants to see a celebrity, where their presence is a mere excuse to fill in for a really terrible,...
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