Retaining Your Listeners Attention – Radio Share

How to get and hold audience attention

First of, don’t ever, ever, start your message with the name of your business. In other words, don’t do what at least 50% of the commercials you hear do. People do not care about your business except for two things: to know if you have what they want, and if you’re offering it at a price they are okay with.

So, right off the bat, if you say “we have competitive prices,” you’re telling them nothing except “our prices are the same as everybody else’s,” and what kind of selling point is that?

You begin your commercial with one of two things: either you tell them about something you know there’s a good chance they want, either now or later, or you talk to them about a problem you know they’re having or will have. You don’t say a word about your business, again, because they are not interested in your business. You must make them interested.

And you do this using words that will grab their ears. That means you do not use the same words everyone else uses in their commercials:

Going on now
With sale prices throughout the store
Our friendly staff
Our professional staff
Our experienced staff
Our 200 years combined experience

Nobody cares how much experience you have. They are not thinking Gee I hope their staff is friendly. How about professional? Well, if you’re in business it’s assumed your professional, isn’t it? Same with “experienced.”

“Going on now with sale prices throughout the store” is bad for two reasons: it’s been used so many times that now, it’s just noise that makes people stop listening to your advert, and it puts no visual image in their minds. It’s the same as saying “Everything’s on sale!” What do you see in your mind when you hear that? Not a thing. You’re not exciting your audience.

But if you say, “from now thru Saturday at 3 pm sharp, you can get that lawn sprinkler, you know, the one with the green base and the spinning chrome arms you’ve wanted since you ran thru it when you were a kid,” what happens then? Well? Now, you’ve created a true advertisement. What you’ve done is to bring back, in this case, a pleasant memory, and given the listener a way to recreate it.

Talk to your customer like that, and he’ll pay attention all the way through, and if he’s interested in that product, he’s coming to see you, not your competitor, who’s telling them “Everything’s on sale throughout the store! Come see our knowledgeable, friendly staff, and remember, we have 200 years combined experience!”

-Mike Holmes

Leave a Reply