Are You Committing These 7 Very Expensive And Highly Inefficient Advertising Sins?
With efficient advertising you can easily stand out from your competition.
If you attract the right customer, you can see your advertising investment return a healthy profit.
So if your advertising fails to deliver, could it be because you’re committing one of these deadly sins?
Want to find out?
Then read on…
1. Targeting everyone and appealing to nobody
It can be tempting to try and market your business to a very wide group of people. After all you never know who might be interested.
However this is a deadly mistake.
That’s because a general, mass-market appeal simply dilutes your message. And as a result you end up appealing to nobody.
Instead tightly focus on your niche. Write as if you were writing for just one person (incidentally this should be the person your business is best placed to serve). Do this and be rewarded with a more profitable return on your advertising investment.
2. Your message is forgettable
A lot of small business advertising falls into the “so what?” category.
Joe Public is overwhelmed and bombarded with advertising and information everywhere he looks. And let’s be honest, most of it is the “same old, same old” boring, indistinguishable rubbish.
Don’t be a sheep…
- Make your business stand out.
- Inject your personality.
- Be enchanting and compelling.
- And do something that strongly separates you from your competition.
Be different than your competition, I dare you.
3. Rubbish call to actions
Never assume your reader knows what action you want them to take.
I know, it might be obvious to you, but it’s not to your reader.
And that’s because your reader is unlikely to have given your message their undivided attention. They’re more likely to have skimmed their way through your advertising piece.
Advertising without a strong call to action will underperform – miserably.
Which means whether you want your customer to Buy now, Download, take a Risk Free Trial, etc. you’ve got to TELL THEM!
And the more specific you are, the more effective your results will be.
4. Nobody cares about the product only the outcome
It’s a big mistake to focus on the features of your product or service.
You see features are dull, nobody cares about them. They don’t push any emotional buttons.
In comparison, when you focus on the benefits and get specific how your product and service could change someone’s life, you start to create desire.
This is important – we buy because we want something, not because we need something.
So if your business can save your customer time, help them become richer, allow them to impress their friends, make them smarter, etc. Make this clear.
5. Me, me, me, me, me, me, and you too
Customers really don’t care about you or your company.
All they want to know is WIIFM (that’s What’s In It For Me?)
And it’s your job to answer this question in your advertising.
A simple litmus test is to look at the ratio of You:We in your copy. If it’s not a minimum of three ‘you’s for every one ‘we’, you’ve got a problem because your advertising is too ‘We’ based.
You’ll end up ‘WE’ing all over yourself and turning potential customers off.
Instead present your business from the customer’s perspective. Talk to them and use copious amounts of one of the most powerful words in advertising – YOU.
6. You don’t compel your customer to act NOW
So you’ve created a lovely leaflet or a jazzy magazine / newspaper advert.
The headline is tempting, message is gripping; the graphics are eye-catching yet it still doesn’t perform.
You need to include a (your totally stupid if you don’t take me up on this fantastic) offer with a deadline.
And not 10% off, that is just a lazy uninspiring offer.
It needs to make the readers want to act now, this second, before they do anything else.
How about a gym that offered ‘Subscribe in December and get January, February and March for Free’
Or a flower shop that offered ‘Order your Valentines day bouquet before February 1st and we will double the flowers in your arrangement for no extra charge’
Or one that made me over £42,000 in lifetime profit from 1 customer a few years back ‘Order over £999 worth of Promotional USB sticks before the end of this month and get a free Ipod’.
Make the offer big. So big the customer would be a fool to ignore it. Then add a deadline to it.
7. Not knowing your numbers
This is arguably the biggest sin.
With no metrics to assess the performance of your advertising you’ll end up throwing money away.
Make it a habit to figure out statistically what works and what doesn’t. Then carry on doing what works and stop doing what doesn’t.
Test offers, test headlines, test the media that you use and build up a clear picture of what your target audience respond to.
Use tracking numbers. Split test. Install Google Analytics. Use landing pages, There are a raft of tools and techniques available to exploit.
Then, over time, you will develop a highly efficient advertising process that’s backed by evidence. It beats guesswork.
Time to get real
If you invest your time and money on advertising that performs well, your business benefits.
So be honest. Test your current strategy against these 7 advertising sins and get clear today what you need to work on. And if you dare, let me know how you got on in the comments below.
Hi, I'm Paul.
Husband of Michele, daddy to Isabella and Jemima, owner of over excitable dog Ben.
I developed SpinLessPlates to be the easiest to use, most time saving B2B micro business management software in the world. If you'd like to save tonnes of time managing your B2B business, simply click here to find out more.