AIDA stands for attention, interest, desire, and action. It is an acronym used in marketing and advertising, which helps marketing managers develop effective communication strategies and communicate with customers in a way that better responds to their needs and desires. AIDA describes a common list of events that occur when a consumer views an advertisement. Each letter in the acronym stands for the following:
- The "A" represents attention or awareness, and the ability to attract the attention of the consumers.
- The "I" is interest and points to the ability to raise the interest of consumers by focusing on and demonstrating advantages and benefits (instead of focusing on features, as in traditional advertising).
- The "D" represents desire. The advertisement convinces consumers that they want and desire the product or service because it will satisfy their needs.
- The "A" is action, which leads consumers toward taking action by purchasing the product or service.
The system is used to guide marketers to target a market effectively. Naturally, as organizations move through each step of the AIDA model, a percentage of initial prospects are lost throughout the sales cycle.
Car advertisements are prime examples of results stemming from the use of the AIDA model to narrow the target market . Marketers in the automotive industry know their advertisements must grab the attention of consumers, so they use colors, backgrounds, and themes that would appeal to them. Next, automotive marketers pique interest by showing the advantages of owning the car. In the case of the Mini-Cooper, for instance, marketers imply that a small car can get the consumer to open spaces and to fun.
Third, automotive marketers find what their consumers desire. For Mini-Cooper drivers, it's the "fun" of driving, while for Prius consumers it may be the fuel economy or the environmentally friendliness. Only after evaluating consumer desires are marketers able to create effective campaigns. Lastly, marketers encourage consumers to take action by purchasing the product or service.
History Of the AIDA Model
American advertising and sales pioneer, Elias St. Elmo Lewis, is largely credited for developing the AIDA model. In one of his publications on advertising, Lewis identified at least three principles that should be present in an advertisement:
- The mission of an advertisement is to attract a reader, so that he will look at the advertisement and start to read it.
- The advertisement must then interest him, so that he will continue to read it.
- Finally, the advertisement must convince him, so that when reads it, he will believe it.
Lewis believed that if an advertisement contained these three qualities, then it was an effective advertisement.
Improvements to the AIDA Model
New phases such as satisfaction (AIDAS) and confidence (AIDCAS) have been added to the original AIDA model. These later models acknowledge the need to satisfy the customer so as to encourage repeat purchases and generate product referrals. Other modifications include the model's reduction to the three steps known as the CAB model. The steps include cognition (awareness or learning), affect (feeling, interest, or desire) and behavior (action).
Later developments also introduced more flexible uses of the AIDA model such as the reordering of steps for different consumer-to-product relationships. Additionally, as experts have examined the AIDA Model, more defined practices and theories have been developed. These practices include the TIREA scale, which focuses on breaking down the decision-making process into more defined components. The TIREA represents thought, interest (desire), risk (evaluation), engagement, and action.