See no evil, hear no evil, do no evil. The three monkeys had it right in describing the 3 learning styles. And, like this famous image shows, we don’t all learn the same way. These primary learning “styles” of seeing, hearing and doing impact how an individual receives your marketing message.

What does this mean to you as a marketer? Your approach may need to integrate elements of the three learning styles to be more successful. This same theory applies to combining marketing channels to conduct a more effective campaign (a.k.a. integrated marketing).

Within the “seeing” group, some individuals are more drawn to your content and want to read all they can to learn. This group may ignore your graphics; the ad creative is not as important to them as the written word. Others are drawn to images, layout, and information delivered in short chunks. Think USA Today.

The “hearing” group learns best when they have auditory messages. This could come on the radio, recorded messages (on hold, website), music (web background), and also video which combines images, movement and sound (website, TV, in office, mailed DVDs or CDs, via smart phones).

The final “doing” group likes things “hands-on” and might be approached best with a free sample that they can touch, taste, or smell (depending upon your product!) or product demonstrations (live or on the web).

Whichever method or media you choose, don’t forget to include a “call to action” (i.e., what do I want the prospect to do with the advertisement, commercial, blog, sample, or video). Here are some ways you might combine techniques to effectively target these learning styles.

  • In a printed marketing piece, position graphics and headlines to provide the highlights, then include more detail (if there is room) or add specific website information for those who want to learn more. As an option, offer a free newsletter for signing up via email (this allows you to capture key prospect information as well).
  • If you produce a video, include written captions, a link to an information-filled website or blog, or offer a downloadable whitepaper or tips sheet with more information. Post segments of the video on your website and YouTube.
  • Offer video viewers the option of subscribing to future videos or signing up for a written (e-mail or printed) newsletter or blog (or both).
  • Sending a targeted direct mail piece for a new software product? Provide each user with a personalized link to a demo of the software that allows them to go hands-on and see how it works.
  • Promote a new food product line using social media – offering free samples with a coupon that can be either printed or stored on a mobile device to show to the cashier!

Take a look at the ads you see over the next few days and see if (and how) they combine techniques and channels to reach more than one learning style. There’s not one “right” way to do this—it takes some thought, planning and testing to see which methods will work best for your target market. Begin thinking about how you can take these ideas and use them in your marketing. Good luck!

Author: Jeanne Frazer