I spotted an interesting story in the Evening Standard last week about ambush marketing – the idea that you unofficially promote your product at an event without actually sponsoring the event. The example cited the Bavarian beer company who sneaked 30 or so blond models into a world cup football match recently, catching the world’s attention.
Advertising Archives - Page 2 of 3 - Klaxon
Small Business Advertising
I love entertaining TV advertising. This one by Nike is a classic example of big brand advertising at its best – funny, carrying a message, memorable and so much more. But as a small business can you use brand advertising as a marketing tool?
How to Avoid Advertising Disasters
I’ve been working with small businesses for long enough to know that most standard advertising is fairly ineffective for generating sales pipeline. Sadly I have learnt this the hard way, by wasting money on adverts that have generated a negative return on investment – the negative element being the loss of cash and moral! So why then do I occasionally get caught out by advertising sales reps?
A question I had to ask myself recently when I booked a quarter page ad in a publication in London that turned out to be a bit of a toad. The reason I would hazard a guess is twofold:
1. the skill of the sales rep in presenting a compelling opportunity, and
2. the client’s real need for new leads in these difficult economic conditions made me think twice
Of course when I learnt my advice on this one was a little wayward, I did the only decent thing and offered to cover the cost of the advert should the promised sales leads not appear. Watch this space to see if I have to get my cheque book out.
The other result is that I’ve decided to compile a checklist of questions I must ask and fully understand before I place an order. With the aim of helping everyone to get a better return on their advertising investment, I thought I’d share this here.
- Is the publication readership the same as my target audience / decision maker? (note it is important to really understand your target audience first!)
- Do I clearly understand the target audience description provided by the publication?
- Have I heard of the publication or is it launching?
- What is the format of the publication – A4, A5, glossy, newspaper, portrait, landscape, colour or black and white etc?
- Exactly what size will the advert be?
- Can I secure a guaranteed right hand page? (important as an advert placed on a right hand page generally outperforms those on the left hand page)
- Are any of my competitors advertising?
- What is the publication date?
- What is the publication’s reach – not just the circulation, but total reach?
- Will they offer any guarantees – cost per enquiry for example? (unlikely but worth asking)
- Can the publisher help to put together the creative?
- Have any of my competitors / peers advertised in the publication and if so what results did they achieve? (also, could I have their contact details so I can talk to them and find out about their experiences?)
- What is the total price?
These questions will help me to better understand whether the opportunity will present a return on investment i.e. a value of sales greater than the cost of the advertising. Ultimately, there are lots of other factors which will impact the success of the advert which are not the responsibility of the publication.
In particular, the quality of the text and images used in the advert and the strength of the call to action. For some guidelines on good advert copywriting, check out this post by freelance advertising copywriter John Kuraoka.
I’d very much like to hear the experiences of other small business advertisers as to how you measure and interpret whether an opportunity will present good value?
Is This a Viral?
I came across the fantastic Viral Video Chart today and spotted an ad for the Wii that seems to be pretty popular right now. See for yourself below, can anyone explain why this might have viral marketing qualities..?
Or do you think Nintendo has nothing to do with this..?
PS I hope I haven’t alienated any female readers!!
Fantastic comment from ‘Pressure Washer Reviews’. Thanks for introducing me to the remake, which just goes to show how viral this is – even if it wasn’t seeded by Nintendo…
Enduring the worst, to bring you the best..
Absolutely classic advertising!
Happy easter everyone!
Subliminal Advertising For You
Recently I posted a YouTube video of Derren Brown’s phenomenal subliminal advertising exercise. The reaction I got in the comments got me to thinking that it truly is an interesting concept to play around with.
Now if you read my blog you’ll know my interest in marketing is mostly in working with small businesses. By their very nature small companies don’t do a great deal of advertising, or when they do, nothing that really has the exposure you’d need to influence an audience subliminally. Nor would they really need to take this mass market approach. But I can’t get away from thinking this could be a powerful tool for other audiences i.e. not necessarily customers.
With this in mind, I’m planning my own little experiment with a client of mine. To give you a little background to the client, it is a small professional services company that’s doing fantastically well. So well in fact that it’s having to move the focus of its marketing programmes from customer acquisition, to customer satisfaction.
The team all want to do a good job and work hard, but have yet to grasp the importance of keeping clients satisfied. Or indeed the need to measure satisfaction levels on a regular basis. Of course we all know that customer sat is crucial for the long term health of the business.
What I plan to do is rather than push on them the need work towards and measure customer satisfaction, I intend to leave subliminal messages in their offices that might encourage them to agree with my way of thinking.
For example, if I collect a dozen different customer satisfaction surveys from big brands and leave them on the meeting room table, will this catch their eyes. Could this demonstrate that other successful companies are doing this and therefore it’s important for them too?
Now clearly I don’t have much of a plan yet, but I intend to get some ideas down and work this through with the Managing Director. This way we can plan for and measure any change in attitude – if any at all. So watch this space, I’ll tell you all how it progresses.
Any ideas would be much appreciated. What audio visual clues could I leave to highlight the importance of customer satisfaction, without pushing it down their throats.
The Power of Subliminal Advertising
Another fantastic YouTube video, this time by mind trickster Derren Brown. Watch and enjoy, this is truly remarkable.
Once you’ve watched the video have a think about what you can do to capture people’s attention without them necessarily realising you are advertising to them.
What Type of Advertising is Most Trusted by Internet Users?
I came across this article on eMarketer today and it makes some interesting reading. It’s essentially a summary of the results of a survey conducted by Nielsen into which types of advertising are most trusted by internet users. The survey was conducted in 47 different countries across the globe so it’s pretty comprehensive. So what then was the number one response to the question of which form of advertising is most trusted…..
wait for it….
it’s ‘recommendations from consumers’, which was ranked number one by 78% of respondents.
What does this mean for us internet marketers then?
Well recommendations from consumers are essentially word of mouth in the offline world, but online this can mean comments in forums, blog posts, ratings sites and other user generated content. Worth keeping an eye out for anything written about you or your product then, perhaps by setting up Google Alert.
If you see some bad comments, make sure you investigate why and turn those unhappy customers into happy customers. if you receive a lot of good comments, start incorporating those as testimonials on your sales literature and squeeze pages.
What’s also interesting about the survey results comes further down the results.
61% rated comments posted online (which in my mind is the same as recommendations from consumers) and 49% rated email subscriptions as effective forms of advertising. A lot further down come search engine ads and banners at 34% and 26% respectively.
You might want to keep these figures in mind next time you put a marketing campaign together, or think about a traffic promotion. If recommendations from consumers are twice as likely to be effective, you might want to spend twice as much time generating positive customer experiences than setting up Payperclick ads.
Anyway, read the full report at the fantastic eMarketer site.
Pushing advertising to the (vertical) limit
As per usual when I come across some really great brand advertising I’ll post it up here. Adidas have gone to town with this billboard in Tokyo and you can see why it’s attracting so much attention. Congratulations to the agency who dreamt this one up.
Hands up those who’d like to have a go?
A little bit of praise for Google
I‘m not often one to sing Google’s praises, but credit where credit’s due in my opinion and they do seem to be smartening up their act with the AdWords support programme. Perhaps this is in response to Microsoft adCentre’s excellent telephone support line.
Well anyway, just a short post to say well done Google. The recent problems I’ve been experiencing with My Client Centre and Analytics are being handled by a very polite and responsive lady by the name of Niamh (pronounced Neve for those non-Gaelic readers). I will let you all know how quickly the problem is resolved, but for now I’m happy in the assurances that Niamh is on the case.