Who has time anymore? Time to savor the pages of a good book. Time to spread your arms and hold a newspaper up. Time to have a verbal conversation over some coffee. Time to disconnect and think through things. Not me, not you and especially not the Millennials and Gen Z kids.

Everyone has a smartphone and notifications are a dime a dozen. A minor dopamine dose every few minutes is the order of the day. Life is faster than ever before and digital gadgets are enabling that shift.

And when attention span is at a premium, do we really have the time as marketers to have a conversation via print with our consumers? When digital communications have ramped up their game and static online ads – the equivalent of print ads – suffer from banner blindness, the need of the day is the engage the audience through any means possible and hope they get an eyeball at your product.

Print adverts done right is so old school. And so very hard. What a typical AV commercial takes the typical 30 seconds to say, print has to do it in 100cc (if you’re lucky). Yet, anyone who can craft a proper print ad knows the intricacies of proper communication. That experience is hard-won and in diminishing supply. That art of creating sharp communication via print is a dying art. In my career of over two decades of creating communication of every type, cracking print was the hardest. In a single visual you had to tell a story, a compelling story. The headline had to attract enough attention for the reader to pause and the copy had to be interesting enough to reward that pause. It made you think thrice over every word. Every sentence had a purpose and every cc left blank was hard-fought.

But communication has changed.

It is a change I welcome with open arms. No longer can you fool your customers with shoddy products or unsubstantiated claims (We are No. 1). A quick google search reveals all. And one bad experience is there online for everyone to read for the rest of time. And with shrinking attention spans advertisers have to cater to quick, impactful engagements that are immediately shareable and have the potential to go ‘viral’. And when everything can be measured to the minutest detail and split tests reveal which communication has more traction, gone are the days of long copy, witty play of words and all-encompassing imagery.

This new generation of advertisers have their work cut out for them. Time is of essence and well thought out creative briefs seem outdated. They must think on the go and create on the fly with one wary eye out on social media for competitor communications. Memes have a shelf life of 48 hours and if one is hot on a Friday evening, there goes your Saturday to try and jump on the bandwagon. The luxury of ‘We will get back on Monday’ is so early 2010s. But then that is the sign of these times.

Subu Shrestha

About Author

Mr. Sramanendra Bhakta Shrestha popularly known as Subu Shrestha is the
Director at Advantage Group (P) Ltd. a leading advertising communications firm
based in Kathmandu. Over the past 23 years, Mr. Shrestha has worked with
almost every major corporate firm in Nepal and has been a part of most
wonderful campaigns created by the agency.

Besides Advantage Group, he is also involved in number of other companies as
a Director like Casa Deyra Pvt. Ltd., Ananya Apartments Pvt. Ltd., Yakety Yak
Hostel, Tuki Logic Pvt. Ltd. to name a few.

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