Formally or informally, you’ve probably played this game: Someone asks a “Would you rather. . . ” question with two choices offered. An example might be “Would you rather have a great dinner or a great dessert?” or “Front row seats at a basketball game or private loge seats to a football game?” Then, people jump in and answer the question and maybe in the process reveal a bit about themselves, especially if they give a reason that makes sense (even more so if they give a reason that does NOT make sense). Good game to play with a group of 8 year olds or a group of college students – different questions, of course.
Based on this concept, answer this question: “Would you rather maintain your eyesight or your hearing – would you rather be blind or deaf?” When I was younger, I would have opted for eyesight. Too much to see, and so much that can’t be done (e.g., driving a car) without vision.
As I get older, though, I’m not so sure. I remember the opinion of my father, expressed to me when he was in his 70s. He had at least two good friends who had lost either their vision or their hearing, and he had much contact with other deaf and blind people. Without a doubt, he said that the blind people were far more social and connected to a world that they couldn’t see than were those locked in a silent world. Recently, I have observed enough to agree (posthumously) with my father.
As this relates to marketing, content and communications, I’m a bit torn. The power of visuals is with me everyday – photos, imagery, stunning video. In just a few moments, a few visual elements can tell a story with deep emotion and nuance. But lately I’ve become caught up in some amazing podcasts and other “audio only” media that conveys deep meaning and learning that seems focused due to the fact that only one sense is at attention.
So, if you had to convey your content to your audience and you could only utilize sight or sound, “would you rather . . .?”