Stop Annoying Your Target Audience

Annoying Noises ProhibitedThis post is a could-have-been complaint turned into a business lesson on keeping your target audience in mind.

You see, there’s this music news website that I visit pretty regularly. The reason I check it regularly is because they update the site daily with newly-released music. Unfortunately, this site has been using ads on its music pages that play noise when you roll over them. And sometimes rolling over those ads is nearly unavoidable.

This means that while I’m in the middle of listening to a song (which, as I mentioned, is the only reason I visit the site), I’ll suddenly hear a random assortment of talking/singing simultaneously playing from an unavoidable banner ad for Cherry Dr. Pepper.

Let’s put this into a business perspective. You have a meeting with John. You go to your meeting and start talking with John. Then, mid-meeting, John pulls out his cell phone and starts another, totally unrelated meeting with someone else. And John expects you to be completely ok with that.

This is what happens to me almost every time I try to listen to new music on this website. And, as you can expect, it’s really starting to turn me off of that site. I’m just about ready to move on to new places, simply because they can’t use a noise-free banner ad on their music pages. Probably not the result they were going for.

My point is this – in any aspect of your business, it’s important to consider what your target audience wants. Not what you think they want. Not what makes you the most money. But what will keep your target audience returning as loyal customers instead of driving them away over time.

Because if your product or service is annoying to your customers, that alone could be the difference between someone choosing your product/service or instead choosing an option that doesn’t annoy them when they try to use it. All in all, it’s for you to decide. But in my experience, the happy customer option is usually a pretty good choice.

-Mike B.

Photo by Patrick Fitzgerald. Thanks Patrick!