Easily Distracted? Don’t You Just Love Chocolate!

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April 22, 2014

Easily Distracted? Don’t You Just Love Chocolate!

Think of all the times in a day you get distracted and lose your train of thought.

The phone rings.  A dog barks.  A wafting scent steals your attention.  There are so many “natural events” beyond your control it’s amazing you stay as focused as you do.

Now imagine the unforeseen challenges of keeping a radio listener focused on your message while you make the case for them doing and feeling what you want them to do and feel by the end of your commercial.

That’s why it’s imperative that your scripted and produced radio commercial be structured to command and maintain attention, not let it wander.  Production elements like music and sound effects can be powerful tools to snare attention, but overdone, they can also hypnotize (music) or distract (effect).  Think of those elements like exotic spices in a delicate recipe: too much can ruin the meal, while the right amount will garner five-star reviews and a loyal following.

But not shooting yourself in the foot is only half the battle.  Gunshots from afar can still distract and injure.  So anticipate those unexpected distractions.

  • Use music and sound to draw the radio listener back to the message, 40 or 45 second into a 60-second commercial so that they’ll hear and process your call to action. 
  • Stagger inflection and cadence to disrupt an otherwise-melodic script read.  “HEY!  YOU!” is the kind of a shout-out that turns heads on the street.  It be just as effective in a radio commercial. 
  • Entertainment and humor can keep the listener listening.  But lean on clever twists of the phrase and timed pauses rather than jokes that grow tired after the second or third exposure. 

Much like a blank sheet of paper, the 30- or 60-second radio commercial starts with an empty canvas awaiting splashes of sound and information.  Consider every possible color and brush stroke to command and hold attention.  Make certain your target audience agrees with your choices, lest the best intentions of an unmatched-age-and-gender scriptwriter accidentally build a wall of sound between your message and its intended recipient.

Contact us if you’d like to brainstorm ways to use sound to engage and motivate your customers and prospects.  It’s what radio does best.  And it’s all we do at The Radio Agency.

Mark Lipsky is the President and CEO of The Radio Agency. Please follow The Radio Agency’s Blog “Sounding Board” by subscribing to the email or RSS links above.Visit our website TheRadioAgency.com