Advertising Campaigns That Get Results
By: Charlie Cook
"Advertising doesn't work." I hear it from my clients all the
time. One client was about to file for bankruptcy because she wasn't
getting a good response to her radio ads, and the cost was killing her. But
she knew her target market was listening; she knew she needed to get her
name out there to generate more business. What should she do?
Owners of small businesses and professionals like yourself realize that to
take your business to the next level, you need to get your products and
services in front of a larger audience. You want to generate more leads,
get more prospects to contact you and buy from you. Advertising is
essential but how do you get more out of your advertising dollars?
Have you been disappointed by your advertising campaigns?
I felt the same way about my family's VCR. I paid good money for it (though
probably not nearly as much as most people pay for advertising) and as far
as I was concerned I could never get it to work the way I wanted it to. I
spent way too much time fiddling with it and I still couldn't get it to
record a TV show or a movie reliably when I was away. After a while I
stopped trying to use its record function.
Compared to programming a VCR, creating a successful advertising campaign
is simple. Note the operative word here is "successful". It's easy to put
together an advertising campaign, but creating one that helps you make more
than you spend should be the objective. The following seven elements are
what separate a successful advertising campaign from one that just costs
Elements of A Successful Advertising Campaign
1. Choose the media that will reach your target market. It sounds obvious,
but make sure your target audience will see and/or hear your ad. Select a
publication or radio or cable station that your target audience reads or
tunes to. If you're advertising on the web, your keyword selection is
2. Write ad copy that your prospects will want to read.
Your prospects' primary interest is in what your product or service will do
for them, not what it actually is. Which would you be more likely to read,
a headline that reads, "Accounting Services" or one that reads, "How to
Avoid Overpaying Your Taxes"?
3, Have others establish your credibility.
If space allows, include testimonials in your ad verifying the outstanding
results your products and services generate.
4. Motivate prospects to contact you
Include a limited-time offer or something for free - a report, appraisal or
bonus product - to prompt your prospects to take action.
5. Tell prospects what you want them to do and how to do it.
This is your "call to action". Tell them to call you, visit your web site,
send you an email, fill in the reply card, etc.
6. Follow up your offer with the information prospects need to make a
purchase. Too many people make the mistake at this point in the sales
process of launching into a s.ales pitch. Whether your prospect is on the
phone with you or is visiting your web site, help them clarify the problem
or concern they have and detail the solution you provide. Then remind them
what action you want them to take.
7. Continue to educate your prospects and clients.
Stay in touch with likely prospects by contacting them at least every
month. Get the conversation going by discussing a common problem. Give your
prospects a quick tip they can use and, of course, mention the solutions
A successful advertising campaign will include all seven of the above
elements, not just one or two. When you put all these elements in place,
your advertising will generate more leads and sales and you'll see a good
return on your advertising dollars.
By the way, the client who came to me on the verge of bankruptcy is now
back on solid financial ground. Once she understood how to write her
advertising copy and manage her advertising campaigns, her radio
advertising started to bring in a steady stream of new business.
2004 © In Mind Communications, LLC. All rights reserved.
The author, Charlie Cook, helps service professionals and small business owners attract more clients and be more successful. Sign up for the FrŽe Marketing Plan eBook, '7 Steps to get more clients and grow your business' at http://www.marketingforsuccess.com