Are you a newspaper reader? Quick, tell me all the ads you remember from yesterday's paper. No fair peaking at the recycle pile. And don't just guess the big furniture chain or tire store. They might have been in yesterday's paper, or was it last Monday's?
The Invisible Truth
The truth is, the only ads you see and remember in a newspaper are ads for products in which you currently are in the market. If you need a new couch, all the furniture store ads pop out at you. If you need a new car, every auto dealer suddenly becomes visible. Every other ad is invisible. Heck, newspapers are designed to teach us to ignore the irrelevant. Headlines are written to get your attention. If you don't care, you don't read.
The only ads you see are the ones relevant to you.
a : having significant and demonstrable bearing on the matter at hand
b : affording evidence tending to prove or disprove the matter at issue or under discussion
If it isn't important to us, if it doesn't have significant and demonstrable bearing on the matter at hand, we aren't looking, we aren't listening, we aren't paying attention.
Three Roads to Relevancy
You can make your ads more relevant three different ways.
Make it about a product. Your store isn't that important. It's the products in your store that attract attention. If you sell widgets and your ad is all about widgets you will immediately attract the attention of all the people in the market for a widget.
Make it about a felt need. We all have felt needs such as the need for more money, security, prestige. When your message addresses that felt need it becomes relevant to all who share that feeling. If you are filling a specific need, speak to that need and your message becomes more relevant.
Make it about the customer. The most important person in your world is you. The most important person in your customer's world, however, is her. She isn't interested in hearing about you, but she loves to hear about herself. When you can tailor your message so that it puts the customer in the starring role, the relevancy of that ad skyrockets.
When you raise the Relevancy of your message, you get more people paying attention.