Editors Note: There's a difference between advertising and "successful advertising". Advertisers merely throw their name out there, perhaps make it look attractive, and often have no idea if what they are doing is actually successful.
Successful advertisers go many steps beyond. Their advertising isn't always successful, but they learn what works and what doesn't, and equally important, they include the basic elements that should exist in every advertising campaign. Using Christoph Puetz article below, go through your advertising steps to see if you are on the track to being a truly "successful advertiser."
Elements of a Successful Advertising Campaign
by: Christoph Puetz
A successful marketing campaign needs certain elements to be successful. The following information will help you to develop a successful marketing campaign.
1) Establish a feeling of urgency for the buyer. Basically tell your customers, "You need to sign up today because it will make you reach your goals." Don't tell your customer the offer will still be as good tomorrow; they must buy today! Urgency! Study how successful ads make the customer act now.
Remember the X10 Spy Cam advertising campaign? They always had their website set up with a deadline for a special deal. Something like that is easy to program and will eventually urge the customer to sign up today. Don't over do it - use this tactic for a week - then switch to something else.
Rotate these marketing tools. Start looking more closely at the marketing vehicles (email, letters, postcards,) you receive yourself every day, and you'll begin to see that effective marketing always gives you a reason to act now.
2) Show a list of benefits if the customer signs up with you. There must be a list of benefits to make him sign up. Will you be smarter using your services? Will he get more visitors? Will your server be better than the competitions hardware? Will your business help to make the site more successful? Or make him richer, or healthier, or faster?
Focus on the client, not the advertiser. Most benefits need to be skillfully integrated into the ad. It is a waste of time and money in an ad or on your website if you don't work in benefits and present them properly.
3) Call to Action: Tell them what they must do to get it. Don't assume that your prospects and customers will figure out how to get what you are offering. They won't do your work for you. So, go ahead and tell them what to do. If they have to call you to get it, then tell them to call (to call you now!).
If they have to write or drop a post card in the mail, or fax something to you, then tell them clearly and in words easy to understand. The point is to make it as easy as possible for your target customer to do what you want them to do. People don't like to do anything that is going to take work on their part. Make it as easy for them to respond as possible, or they won't = no good results for you.
3a) Do it again: You have to (must) tell customer what to do (to sign up with you). Tell your customer to order now (this moment). So many ads assume that the customer will guess to fill out the contact us form, email you, or telephone for the information, or product. Tell the customer what to do. Provide the customer on how to respond today in several ways. As more options you can offer, the better will be the results.
4) Plan your advertising calendar and campaign several months in advance. Failure to plan advertising in advance will waste a lot of your money. Rush charges, poor design, rate increases, poor creative and poor copy are common results of failing to plan in advance. “I didn’t have enough time”, “I was under the gun to get this placed”, are common phrases heard under rushed circumstances.
Take a blank calendar and fill in the days, months, or quarters to advertise to your target markets. Figure out the number of ad insertions that will make sense and negotiate a contract with the various media suppliers (e.g. local newspapers). Book banner web space on the important website early in advance. Prepare your website with a special landing page for the expected visitors.
5) Test your banners and your ads. Only by trial and error will you be able to set a baseline as to the best response rates for your ads and banners. It is very important to maximize response for the amount of dollars spent. Sometimes re-phrasing text or adjusting the ad layout can make the difference between a low or just average response and a great success and high ROI (Return on Investment).
You will need to find out what works best for your business. After you find this out, you’ll want to stay on course and base future advertising campaigns on the success of the old one.
6) Avoid misleading or dishonest advertising in hopes of converting duped readers/website visitors into using your products or services. Honesty and integrity are the primary key to repeat sales and repeat business. If you have to trick your audience to get their attention, you will have a very hard time keeping their attention and their business if they sign up at all.7) Running On-(Web) Site Events. Running events on your website is an excellent way to encourage repeat traffic and repeat visitors. You'll want to begin running events once traffic from your site launch begins to fade. Examples include contests, games, on-line interviews, chat sessions and maybe even audio broadcasts. Do the things your competitors don't do.