Tuesday, April 03, 2007

An Open Letter to the Creators of Radio Ads

Dear Radio Ad Creators:

I understand what you're up against. Given the limitations of your medium, you can't dazzle potential customers with memorable visuals. Your connection to only one sense means that it is easier for people to tune you out, to ignore your message. You have to work harder than television to put out a memorable ad. I get that.

However, you are way too fond of annoying conventions that alienate and frustrate your audience. Radio, as Ira Glass and Terri Gross are always reminding me, is a very intimate medium. So when you drop these horrible earbombs, it's as though a blind date suddenly vomited in my lap and then asked me for a kiss.

I beg you to elimate the following from your ads:

  • Screams or screeches, particularly of the woman-in-distress variety.

  • Useless and distracting repetition in a conversation between two people. No one talks like that.

  • Coughing, sniffling, sneezing, snoring, lip-smacking, slurping or any other bodily noise. It's odd to me that farting and belching are out but snoring and lip-smacking, both far more irritating, are used frequently.

  • High-pitched electronic warning sounds, particularly the droning REEP-REEP-REEP that the generic digital alarm clock makes. That sound makes me want to punch someone – preferably you.

  • Dental drills. Think about this for a minute – no one likes going to the dentist. Why would you employ the number-one most feared and detest sound in your ad? Why? All it makes me do is turn off the radio as quickly as possible. After the first time, as soon as I know the sound is going to be in the ad, flip and you're gone. I don't even know what product you're flogging – that's how determinental the sound is to your ad.

I thank you in advance for your assistence in eradicating these vile sounds from my every day audio existence. I spend 8 hours a day listening to the radio – I buy stuff. But I'm not going to buy your stuff if your ad contains any of the above noises.

Sincerely,
Ann

9 Comments:

At 3 April 2007 at 08:35, Anonymous Primal Sneeze said...

Here, here! Can you add in any ads with voice-overs by Don Wycherley? In particular the Bank Holiday eegit one - whatever that was about. And while you're at it, include all ads with Hector Ó h’Eochagáin.

But Hector's may already be covered by the screams or screeches, particularly of the woman-in-distress variety category.

 
At 3 April 2007 at 09:21, Blogger The Swearing Lady said...

And this is why I only listen to my own music collection! Oh, Planet Sweary. It is THE PLACE to be.

 
At 3 April 2007 at 13:59, Blogger laurie said...

ah, a rant after my own heart.

there's an ad on the radio here that plays really annoying loud abrasive music to start with. i always scream, nearly drive off the road, and then hit the OFF button on the radio as quickly as possible.

if i ever do drive off the road they'll be hell to pay.

i also hate the dialogue ads--the clueless husband and the intelligent knowitall wife. if the acting were better, maybe....

 
At 4 April 2007 at 19:10, Blogger -Ann said...

PM - I'm not sure I know Don by name - but I bet I'd recognise his voice. Is he yer man who does the broadband ads wherein he derides someone for using "bogband" because "some girl on a travel show" told him to get it only nefariously didn't tell him about high contention rates, "bogband's dirty little secret."

SL - Yeah. but see, you're all hip and probably have an extensive collection of cool music. I am somewhat stuck in the 80s and I'm also a geek, so I am compelled to listen to Newstalk all day. (Well, not from 11-12.30 because Brenda Powers is a harpy and from 12.30-2.00 the new guy is an eejit.)

Laurie - Annoying and abrasive music - that's one I forgot. Also any kind of chanting. There's one ad here for a pizza place that I shall not name and the ad is a rip off of the annoying frog ring tone that was popular about 2 years ago. The ad seriously jeopardises my mental stability.

 
At 5 April 2007 at 03:12, Blogger laurie said...

isnt don wycherley the actor who played Father Aiden on ballykissangel?
i don't think i'd recognize his voice but i'd know those bright red lips anywhere.

 
At 5 April 2007 at 07:02, Anonymous Primal Sneeze said...

That's him, Laurie. He's probably better know as Raymond (the mentally stable one) in Bachelor's Walk.

His accent really wrecks my head. West-Brit and Cork combo. It never bothers me when he's on screen, but I suppose radio means you have to listen more closely.

 
At 5 April 2007 at 07:08, Anonymous Primal Sneeze said...

I'm not sure about the bogband ad, Ann. I haven't heard it. But he does the MyHome.ie ones.

 
At 5 April 2007 at 07:19, Blogger -Ann said...

Ah - I have to confess that I like the MyHome ads, mostly because they're somwhat catchily written. The Bogband ads, on the other hand, are just plain annoying. (And I don't think the same guy does them.)

 
At 5 April 2007 at 15:29, Blogger laurie said...

OH and anything with a police siren or the sound of car crashing.

i have pulled over in a panic more than once because of a stupid ad.

 

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