Despite the great amount of time I spend online, I don't do what many other web users do. That is to say, I don't typically use sites like weather.com, mapquest, or the social sites like facebook or myspace. However, today is a fairly cold day in North Carolina. Cold enough, in fact, that I felt like checking the forecast to see if it would continue to be this cold later in the week. Rather than turn on the tube (television, not youtube, which I have to admit is pretty neat for all the stuff you can find), I went to weather.com
What forecast did I find. Well, I never got that far. As I was going to the outlook for my area, I was interrupted by a full page oscar mayer hotdog ad. With some degree of irritation, I clicked the X to close it off the screen. Then I went to my blog to talk about the irritation of being assaulted with ads on internet web sites.
However...as I began this post, it occurred to me. You know, advertising can be productive for advertisers regardless of whether or not the user is irritated by the ad or intrigued by it. And here's why. The only thing the ad "wants to do" is A. command your attention for a specified amount of time or B. make an impression on the viewer such that the product stays in the viewer's field of consciousness for a while.
Guess what? I was very irritated by the hotdog ad interrupting me as I sought my local weather forecast. But here I am, thinking about hotdogs.
I think these ad folks know a great deal more than we think when we speculate that these ads couldn't possibly be productive since so many of us close them out on our browsers.
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