However effective your newspaper or 1'V advertising may be in persuading the consumer that he has a need for the type of product you are offering and however well you may have convinced him that, of all available makes, it is your particular brand which he will prefer to use, the battle has not been decided until he enters a shop and buys it.

Decisiveness is not a prevalent human virtue. Memories, too, have a way of being capricious. It is necessary, therefore, to bridge the gap between the work done by press and TV advertising and the point at which the customer makes the ultimate decision to purchase: at the shop counter. As he goes to make that decision, there is the danger that the time lapse that has occurred since he was last exposed to the advertiser's message may have brought about a diminution in the effectiveness of that message or it may, indeed, have been completely forgotten. The consumer is the victim of tremendous pressures from his workaday cares as well as the pressures of competitive advertising. It thus becomes very necessary to repeat and re-emphasize one's sales message, right there, at the point in time and place at which his final purchasing decision is reached.

There are, of course, a large number of everyday purchases which we make on impulse. A man finds that he has run out of tobacco, so he enters the first tobacconist's shop he comes to and buys a packet. In the supermarket, the housewife spies, suddenly, a display of biscuits and remembers that she must buy some. The child sees the ice-cream vendor on the street corner and demands an ice-lolly. All these are impulse purchases and seldom carry with them any conscious reference to a specific advertisement seen or heard hours, days or weeks previously. It is essential, therefore, to remind the shopper of one's pre-selling message. In fact, the omission of adequate point-of-sale advertising can result in a waste of much of the appropriation that one has spent on TV commercials and press announcements because their ultimate effectiveness has been allowed to dissolve before the purchasing decision has been reached.

Next - News Field Research

Please Note

The Trade is, of course, a major source of product ideas. All manufacturers examine, with avid interest, the new products of their competitors.

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