The Search for Silence
From the moment we first wake up, we’re bombarded with messages, emails, and ads demanding our time and attention. Our devices allow us to catch up with friends, catch up on work, even catch a cab, but what we can’t seem to catch is some peace and quiet.
Enhanced tech connection has long been recognized for its benefits. Now, however, we’re becoming more aware of its negative impacts, which involve everything from sleep disorders and stress to depression and anxiety. And consumers are beginning to say, “enough.”
In a world that increasingly expects us to be always on, many consumers are looking for ways to limit their connection and reduce the noise created by their digital devices. To do so, they’re purchasing products that lock up their phones, resolving to cut out social media in the New Year, and going so far as to take a float in isolation tanks.
Even digital brands like Twitter have started to help their customers in the search for silence, introducing an updated mute feature that allows users to mute notifications about specific topics and conversations.
Might your brand stand to benefit from helping consumers reduce the noise in their lives? Consider the approaches below.
Create a (Nearly) Silent Sanctuary
Quiet space is an endangered species. According to acoustic ecologist Gordon Hempton, just 12 places remain in the United States where you can go without hearing any human-caused noises. While true silence might be hard to achieve in your experiential marketing, see how much noise you can eliminate.
London department store Selfridges, for example, opened a silence room that invited shoppers to leave their shoes, phones, and 21st century distractions in lockers and enjoy a moment away from the noise. The space was well received by shoppers who stopped to relax, de-stress, meditate, and even nap.
In today’s tech-obsessed world, going analog can be a radical idea. Consider an experience that provides your audience a reprieve by deliberately excluding digital elements. You may find that doing things “the old way” is novel and noteworthy.
Folk Rebellion, a lifestyle brand that encourages mindful tech usage, created a tech-free retreat in Brooklyn. Attendees traded cell phones and WiFi for notepads and pencils, disposable cameras and analog alarm clocks. One attendee said his night of listening to records, making arts and crafts, playing trivia, and connecting with others was “one of the best evenings he’s experienced.”
Help them Cope
Though we may be able to find quiet moments throughout the day, we can’t escape digital connection completely. So think beyond temporary relief, and find ways to provide your consumers with skills and solutions to help them manage and mitigate the negative effects of connectedness.
Thrive Global, a company focused on ending the stress and burnout epidemic, opened a pop-up shop in Brooklyn. Visitors were able to come relax and connect, enjoy a nap in the nap room, and partake in live education, demonstrations, and product trials across multiple mindfulness and productivity categories.