Have you ever seen an commercial you liked but couldn't remember the product? Have you ever met someone but couldn't remember their name? Have you ever read something but couldn't remember where you saw it?
If you have ever worked in the advertising world – particularly outdoor/transit – you know all about the three second rule. It’s often even less, but you have about three seconds to make an impression with someone. Your billboard, bus board, transit shelter or subway message needs to resonate – even subconsciously – in about as much time as it takes to say your name.
Planning That First Impression
Months of planning, meetings, art direction, graphic design, more discussions, the client wants it bigger or pinker, more meetings, more design, more revisions, all for a three second event. Add to that, once your message is in a certain location for too long it becomes part of the unnoticed background.
Keeping Their Interest
How is that different than online marketing or frankly meeting someone in person? You have three seconds and they do too. Now most of us pass that three second test. Most of us can compose ourselves for one-two-three moments enough to get that chance to get to know that new person a bit more.
Lead Role In Your Own Movie
I heard a radio talk show last night and one the guests said “No one is more interesting in the story of your life than you. To us, we are all wildly fascinating creatures in our own screenplay.” That sounds egotistical but it’s true. That does not mean we don’t share and give but our only perspective is our own.
Make It About Them
Depending on your reading speed, you gave this post about a sentence before deciding to read on. You are reading this line now because something here made you read further. But if all I do is keep stating that you are reading this sentence you will lose interest. It’s no longer about you, and you are gone.
You have three seconds to make it about them; try it once and wait your turn. What do you think will happen?