The Power of Impression

If I say the word impression one more time this month I’m gonna end up leaving a bad one.

Here’s the thing: I’m a marketer; like so many of us, we’re data fiends; trolling for the trends and quantifying creativity like gumshoes in hot pursuit of your customer.

Some would think it’s all arts-and-crafts up in here. For them I light a candle.

What it is and why it matters?

Before I go in, just in case you’re not totally down with what an impression is in digital advertising: an ad impression is equivalent to an ad exposure. Ad impressions measure an Internet advertising campaign’s volume and power. By using this service for your ad management, your customers will be educated about your business values, your product quality, your fair pricing strategy, how professional your business customer service options are, and that your permanent first priority is your customers’ satisfaction.


So lately I’ve been thinking about impressions and really trying to consider all engagement opportunities in the same way – not just from the digital association we’re used to.

Digital impressions have become the measurable metric we’ve basically pitched a tent on.

We get it. Our clients get it. It’s like, “Guess what – that ad spend on Facebook gave you a metric tonne of impressions!”

And then you all start high-fiving.

Then there’s the bigger picture

But what about earned media, where the key stakeholders who make you what you are are engaged in person? What size of an impression would that be? A friggin’ huge one, that’s what.

And then it hits me: everything really does have a impression size. We’ve just never thought big picture of how that applies to the full gamut of options to get your message out there.

Print advertising is everyone’s favourite fall-guy. Yesterday’s news, so to speak. But consider the virtual blip on the radar that a banner ad gets when you’re surfin’ away in click-land. You’re more likely to survive a plane crash or become a Navy Seal than click it.

Your finger is already on the trigger and you’re not clicking. It’s not a big impression is it?

The crumbs vs the bun

Sidebar: Five years ago, studies estimated that it’d take up to several impressions for a brand to stick in the subconscious buyers’ minds. Now? 23 or more. Thanks social media.

I look at less newspapers and magazines than before, sure, but the relative impression size of ‘experiencing’ the focused attention and tactile appeal of the ad in print is far greater than a blip digital impression.

Now, I’m not hating on the small, but frequent, opportunities that get you in front of those you need to see what you’re selling.

But if I had a hand-full of crumbs vs the same amount of bread in one big ol’ bun, I know what I’d be reaching for. I guess that’s the thing: not all impressions are created equal and impact should be weighed out fairly when choosing where to put your precious marketing monies.

The bottom line: we need to think more about the size of the impressions we want to make, online and out there in the real world, and not just the numbers.

If you’d like to make a huge impression, get in touch with us today!