December 21, 2011
It seems that throughout the 16 years of marriage my loving wife and I have continually had to refocus on timing. I mean timing as in when, where, why and how we exchange that everyday information that comes up through two people trying to keep careers, kids, projects, a house, two dogs, family, friends and some sort of a social life all juggling in harmony.
When we first got married, I worked out of the house when I was not traveling. My wife was a nurse, so there were days when she would be off and I would be in my home office toiling over a days work. I loved how she would come in and get in the chair across from my desk and we would share calendars and thoughts. Slowly though, I found myself feeling distracted and asking her if we could talk about it later. I would say things like “honey, would you get in your car and drive down here just to talk to me about this? If not, can it wait until later?”
Technology and chaos continued to evolve. We started using email and online calendars trying to make the everyday task of talking easier. Those all became hindrances to what was more important or pressing at the time. Then the holy grail of marital communication came our way; texting. What would we do without it? Right?
Wrong. The issue remains in my marriage that remains between brands and their audiences. I am stubborn and easily distracted. I don’t like interruptions but I want information at my fingertips. I want to know what my wife needs me to do; pick up the kids, get the prescriptions from the doctor, be at the soccer practice at 7, etc., but heaven forbid she provide me that information when I am not looking for it. Then it is a distraction.
Brands distract and annoy their audiences. “Would you drive all the way down here just to tell me that?” is something all audiences say when being bombarded with advertising and marketing. But when that audience is hungry for Chinese food, they want to know the best one within the closest two miles ASAP. They want that critical information now that 10 minutes ago was a distraction.
Technology changes. It evolves and new tools and toys come along every day. They do not change the fact that information delivered at the wrong time in the wrong context is a distraction. That same information provided when and where the audience wants it is coveted. Which is your strategy?
- Jeff Kilman, CEO
Photo credit: Horia Varlan