DRTV: Call Me Maybe?

Hey, I just met you,

And this is crazy,

But here’s my number,

So call me, maybe?

Just look at Billboard.com.

Call Me Maybe is by far, the song of Summer 2012.

What can we learn from Carly Rae Jepsen’s catchy earworm?

If you want someone to call you, they’ll need your number.


So how does a no-brainer like this, get lost in the world of advertising?

Whatever the reason, telling the customer where, or how to buy, has become a missed opportunity for advertisers.

Brands will meet for months discussing lofty front-end strategies, like targeting, positioning, and pricing. This is smart preparation.

Then they’ll obsess over executional tactics like taglines, creative, photography, and media placement. These elements define the look, feel and exposure, but they can only do so much.

Commercials have become all flirtation, with no follow-through.

No matter how sexy a spot looks, cleverly it’s written, accurately it’s targeted, or even how much social media it uses, it won’t make the register ring without doing what Carly does: making it easy to call or click, and close the deal. Your customer needs a phone number, a link, a point of sale. This is where direct response (DRTV) shines.

Direct response leverages brand, strategy, creative and media. But it doesn’t leave them hanging. It takes their hand and invites them to take the next step forward, toward making an actual purchase.

Brands can throw all the money in the world at big multi-media campaigns, PR events and sponsorships. Those channels will create awareness like nothing else. But we need to ask what are they making the customer aware of? Existence? Appearance? Coolness? What about how they can buy it? 

Having a great product with smart advertising will definitely get you noticed. But until you’re as well-known as Apple, Pepsi, or Carly Rae Jepsen, the register will never ring until you follow through with those magic words, …here’s my number, so call me, maybe? 

Jim Madsen is a Copywriter at A. Eicoff & Co., one of North America's largest DRTV agencies.