You can’t click through a billboard.
But you know they work.
Spend $1 million on billboards in high-traffic areas – heck, spend $500k – with some half-decent creative and I promise you your revenue will increase. The same is true for online advertising, contrary to popular belief: Put your brand in front of enough people, in a sufficiently compelling way, over a sustained period of time, and consumers will ultimately include you in their solution set and make a purchase.
In other words: Eyeballs count, even when clickthroughs don’t (or can’t, in the case of tv, radio, print, outdoor or sponsorship media) happen.
It’s important to remember that purchasing decisions are the result of a process, not a clickthrough. (I really liked this article – it’s long, and focused on B2B purchasing, but it’s got a great diagram which I think is relevant for B2C and B2P marketing.)
But what really counts is engagement.
I’ll bet you haven’t seen this McDonald’s commercial:
It’s okay if you haven’t seen it – you may not be the target. But here are some interesting stats:
- Almost 2 million other people have seen it*
- 46,000 of those people liked it enough to click a ‘thumbs up’ on YouTube
- 5700 of them felt sufficiently passionate about it to make a comment
- 710,000 liked it so much they watched the ‘Behind the Scenes’ video
- It took them less than 2 days to sell all the t-shirts used in this video
- The video got picked up on hundreds of other sites
What McDonalds and Coca-Cola got here – for less than $50k, if my reports are accurate – was a combination online/PR/social media campaign that didn’t just drive brand awareness, clickthroughs or ‘eyeballs’. It drove engagement. Viewers got involved in the process, felt connected to the results, and were even willing to pay for the privilege.
(*Actually, since YouTube doesn’t count embedded views and autoplays, it’s likely that far more than 2 million people have watched this video.)
I don’t know about you, but I’ll take this kind of engagement over CTRs and even eyeballs any day of the week. After all, when was the last time your audience wanted to pay you money to buy a t-shirt with your logo on it?