Media Messaging Is Simple… As Long As You Don’t Keep Changing Your Mind!
Embedding yourself in the public consciousness – whether you’re a dependency or a dishwasher – takes time. Volvo launched their first safety campaign in 1959. At the ad’s start, there was a public outcry when they released their three-point safety belt. Among them: “The seatbelt is a violation of human rights.” But fast forward to 2021 and you can’t escape the generally held opinion that Volvos – while being probably quite dull and workmanlike – are, to all intents and purposes, a safe drive. These days, say the word ‘Volvo’ and everyone robotically blurts out ‘safety’.
So where does North Korea fit in?! Kim Jong Un always insisted his country had no COVID cases. In fact, earlier this week there were claims that 30,000 tests had delivered not one positive test. As The Guardian reports, experts widely doubt NorthKorea’s claim, given its poor health infrastructure and porous border with China, its major ally and economic lifeline. But whether you believe the dictatorships claims or not, at least North Korea is unflinching. Kim Jong Un continues to have the brass neck to make outrageous claims about the country’s efficacy despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary from detractors and defectors.
Volvo and North Korea both have that magic ingredient: consistency. They both continue to ‘promote’ themselves in the same way. Volvo’s calling card is safety. North Korea’s is an unshakeable belief in its supreme leader’s vision and integrity.
It may seem a strange comparison to make, but in todays’ relentlessly crowded media marketplace, the only way you can ensure your message is received and processed by your audience, is to adopt consistency. It’s no good setting out on one path and then changing your mind. In fact, media engagement through marketing or appearances in print or broadcast, need the same measure of a simple, clear, unequivocal positioning in order to build recognition in the audience’s mind.
It may well be that Indesit and Ecuador have adopted high profile advertising and marketing campaigns in the past. Trouble is, none of it stuck. Ecuador’s Ministry of Tourism tried a print campaign in the UK, US and Canada 2011. Similarly Indesit’s #doingitotgther push fell on deaf ears 7 years later.
Define your position, develop your argument and deliver the result. Could it get any tougher? Only if you lose faith in the message – or keep changing course. That’s the slippery slope to evanescence.
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