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We’ve mentioned it before, and we’ll probably mention it again a few more times after this… but, when it comes to marketing, don’t sell what you do… sell WHY you do it. It all comes down to our favourite Ted Talk theory, ‘How great leaders inspire action,’ by Simon Sinek, where he explains how starting with ‘why’ leads to a far more successful marketing strategy than simply just selling a material product. If you notice, some of the best marketing strategies out there don’t actually centre around their products at all, but rather the lifestyle that you could achieve by consuming their products. Do you remember the series of ‘good call’ Fosters adverts? Yep, it’s the agony aunt Aussie boys, nodding oh so humorously to the trivialities of domestic Britain. We see them kicking back, care free, with the occasional visit from a ‘beautiful blondie’. Oh and all the while they are helping themselves to an esky (that’s a cool box to me and you) full of cold Fosters cans. It’s pretty clear that Fosters are not aiming to sell beer at this point, they’re suggesting a beach bum lifestyle full of beautiful people and no bothers!
Just a quick disclaimer here, these ads have admittedly not aged well, and to be clear we don’t condone the way that Fosters chose to represent women by any standards, nor do we agree with the masculine judgements of appearance. Just to be clear, we don’t stereotype at Nu Image, we’re all too weird, wonderful and creative to be pigeon holed.
Today’s profile of a modern shopper reflects our desire as a society to evolve into something more – more than what we’re actually buying. When we buy a product, it doesn’t just stop there. We are subconsciously expecting the longevity of that lifestyle change the product has so slyly promised us in its advertising. And, yes… Gen Z’s are even more extra than us millennials! As we all know, the products we buy, however useful (or tasty) they are, will not transport us to the sunny beaches of Australia. Shame. But, that’s just how advertising has evolved over time. And, let’s face it, it works! Did you know, as a nation, we spent £160 billion on e-commerce last year alone and according to Charged Retail, the UK are the biggest online shoppers on average in the world.
Images are of course more than ever (with the rise of Instagram, Pinterest and other visual social media platforms) are influencing our shopping habits with targeted ads and boujee video promotions. This along with our ever evolving understanding of human behaviour, means the consumer market is becoming (albeit, increasingly deadly for our bank accounts) a gold mine for businesses across the globe, big and small. We know how to tap into people on a more instinctual level nowadays, and apparently it all harks back to our fundamental building blocks as humans. It’s no big secret that we are all naturally interested in images, and perhaps even more so by moving ones. Movies and animations have been entertaining us for 100’s of years, ever since Eddison’s first revolutionary conception of a moving picture in 1888. Before the pandemic the movie industry was estimated to contribute over £4.6 billion to UK GDP (The Creative Industries) as according to The Guardian as a nation we spent a 3rd of our time watching TV or online videos in 2020. Granted, we were in a national lockdown, but most of us reached for the remote before we grabbed a book!
But where does our fascination with moving pictures come from? As humans we are drawn to movement, we are drawn to life. Putting a heartbeat into an otherwise static image is a sure way to evoke a more immediate emotional response in the viewer. Convergent attempts to understand this idea further by thinking about our ancestral roots and instincts of survival. They write, ‘One important element of that survival is the way in which our brains evaluate movement. Our bias towards motion has its roots in the crucial fight or flight response and is still important now. Simply put, when something moves, we are hardwired to notice and perceive it as a potential threat, so we pay close attention to it.’ They continue to say that this ‘all plays off our instinct to attend to movement, including standing still and watching what captures our attention. Motion creates a sense of urgency – in this case, not to run from a predator, but to walk into a store and buy.’ (Convergent)
It makes sense actually, that when we are presented with movement, we tend to stand still. In our stationary stance, we are not only paying more attention to gather what it is we are looking at, but we are also called upon to assess its relevance to us personally. Consider this for a second, if someone was to run past you, you are probably more likely to pay more attention to them than someone who was walking at a steady pace. Is that fair to suggest? The urgency within them, sparks urgency within you. You might pause as your human brain tries to gather the information as quickly as possible before they whizz past you and you miss it. Why are they running? Do you know them? What are they running from? Should you also be running? We naturally have a more active and emotive response. Is it any surprise then, according to the Convergent article, motion in digital signage for instance ‘garnbers 400% more eyeballs’ than a static traditional sign.
At Nu Image we often use animation to convey a sense of life and vibrancy in our web builds and designs. When businesses come to us, new and old, we love to inject a little movement here and there to hint towards a richer purpose than just ‘selling’ a service and product. By crafting images that dance and move before the customers eyes can adhere to the freeze theory. Stop ‘em in their tracks!
Even small animations can make a huge difference in terms of how a website design is perceived and first impressions can be make or break in the online world. Did you notice a twinkle in the eyes of our lovely team on our ‘about us’ page? It may be subtle, but it’s about taking a little step further in an attempt to show that we are actually living breathing people, friendly and approachable.
And that is just one very teeny tiny example. The list goes on, but in particular we want to talk about our new project Zesti. Zesti is a new stylish workwear and scrub uniforms brand that encapsulates fashion, comfort and professionalism, performing to a new and sporty premium aesthetic. And we’ve been honoured with the task of designing their new website. When they came to us with their brand guidelines, we just knew that an animated web design made sense. Their brand is about people who care, and they in turn care about people. Zesti is more than just a uniform, as a brand it’s about the people who wear the uniform, who these people are and the lifestyle they lead… It’s our job to convey that through their website.
The three strands of uniform aesthetic that tie the entity of Zesti together in one powerful package. The nurses, the beauticians, the vets, the students… are the engines behind the concept of the brand message. Their lifestyles are not only being supported by Zesti products, but amplified and celebrated too. By using movement and animation we aim to project a sense of each niche of the workwear line, from the more smart, humle attire of Mode, to the striking energy prowess of the Power range, all alluding to the nature and drive of the people that wear them.
And, of course, we are playing to the ‘Freeze Theory’ tactic. We strive to make people stop and stare, catch people’s attention and encourage them to think, ‘how do I fit in here, how is this relevant to me?’ Movement encourages people to pause and consider what they’re looking at in more depth and more urgency, which is exactly why advertising all over the world uses it to their advantage. Who wants to be static and merge into the colossal backdrop of ecommerce? A great looking, dynamic website does more than just look pretty. Convey your voice, convey your message through a little animation and reap the benefits of a modern, exciting brand aesthetic.
And that’s what we do, and where we come in. As a full service agency, we house designers who specialise in cutting edge graphics and design. Exceptional at bridging the gap between concept and product, our designers time and time again produce art that exceeds our clients expectations. As a bundle of unique creative minds we collaborate on original ideas and limitless possibilities. If you have a website lacking life, or want to create something with flair, get in touch with us!