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Before You Start Advertising

I am working on my next book (new working title “Most Ads Suck: But Not Yours”). It will help you write copy that gets noticed, remembered, and acted upon, whether for digital, print or broadcast consumption. It is an in-depth take on one of my more popular speaking topics – Making Your Ads More Effective. This book will focus purely on your advertising and marketing content and show you what works and what doesn’t.

Yesterday’s blog about what my grandfather wrote back in 1969, however, had one line about advertising that sticks in my mind.

“If a customer is not satisfied after he is in the store, there is no sense in advertising to get him in the store.” -Philip H. Conley, 1969

Kinda reminds me of another quote I like…

“Advertising will only accelerate what was going to happen anyway.” -Roy H. Williams, 1998

Whenever a company asks me how much they should spend on advertising, my first question is to ask how much are they spending on staff training. No matter what criteria you use to determine your ad budget, if you aren’t spending an equal amount of resources training your staff to be exceptional and extraordinary, you are likely spending too much on advertising.

This is why you see so many big retailers closing their doors. Too much money on advertising, not enough on the in-store experience.

You only get traffic three ways:

  1. Repeat customers
  2. Referral customers
  3. Advertising-driven customers

Repeat customers come from offering great customer service, meeting your customers’ expectations at every point along the way.

Referral customers come from offering over-the-top customer service that causes word-of-mouth. You get that by exceeding your customers’ expectations along the way.

If the majority of customers walking through your door are ad-driven, then your customer service isn’t up to par. You need to hire me to do the breakout Raising the Bar on Customer Service. Or better yet, plan a half-day workshop and I’ll also show you the best way to create a team to consistently deliver that high level of service.

If the majority of your customers are repeat and referral (and business is steady), then go with the breakout session Making Your Ads More Effective. It will deliver the techniques you need to increase your ad-driven traffic. Better yet, the half-day workshop helps you with strategy, too, including how to calculate your budget and choose your media. Best of all, the full-day workshop includes uncovering your brand and message.

First things first, though, as Phil and Roy said, before you spend money on advertising, make sure you have something worth promoting.

-Phil Wrzesinski
www.PhilsForum.com

PS I know some of you are going to tell me there is a fourth way to get traffic – walk-in traffic. I will argue that walk-in traffic is part of your advertising. Your location is part of your overall exposure. Bad location, bad signage, bad front window, no walk-in traffic. (Take the half-day marketing and advertising workshop and you’ll learn how to include your location in your ad budget.) 

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