For many business owners, even a slight mention of the word advertising may conjure colourful images of the Las Vegas cityscape – big and bright neon signs, with sky-high costs!
Still, if you’re making a strategy for your next advertising campaign, there is really no need for you to be so monumental. As William Bernbach, a famous American businessman and marketer once said, advertising is an art of persuasion, and there are many subtle and not so costly ways for your ads to make an impact.
For the art of advertising to begin, you will need a few fresh ideas and some creativity, good techniques, as well as the right choice of communication channels, both offline and online.
Here are seven tips which you can follow when thinking about the right message to persuade your audience effectively with your next advertising campaign.
#1 – Do Your Research
Before getting into any campaign, you will have to do some research. Primarily, you need to focus on finding out who you are aiming at with this campaign, or to put it in exact words, who your audience is. Too often, the idea of our potential prospect is too vague and is based on presumptions, which can often prove to be faulty.
In order to create the right message, put it through the right media, and have the expected influence on your audience, the first thing to do is to create a detailed buyer persona. This means that you will need to communicate with your customers, both fans and haters, and get valid information on who they are, what they do, and is there anything you can do to make them feel better.
By further segmenting your buyer persona by demographics, for example, you can make both your message and the channels of communicating it even more personalized and thus more alluring.
#2 – Fit Your Content to Your Needs
Whatever message and form you choose, for your advertising campaign to be effective, the content you use will have to fit the needs of your potential customers.
This means that the content you provide your prospects needs to be relevant and valuable to them. In the online marketing world, especially when social media is involved, the Pareto principle is still the golden rule, and when applied to the content context, it means limiting sales content to 20% of sales-y material. So, instead of ads and slogans which will tell the story of your greatness, think about what truly interests your potential clients, and offer your goods or your services as a problem-solving solution.
#3 – SEO Matters
Stats show that an average person googles three to four times a day, while every single day Google performs more than 63,00 searches per second. So, unless you do a good job and become visible to those who are searching for the services or goods you provide, a great opportunity for the potential success of your advertising strategy will be wasted.
This means that the content which serves your advertising purposes needs to be search engine optimized. When talking about SEO, we are talking about keywords, backlinks, and a lot of other highly technical stuff. So, unless you are a digital marketer, you wouldn’t want to risk the success of your online advertising campaign by not hiring a professional who will be doing this vital part of the job for you.
#4 – Inbox Delivery
Email campaigns are widely used for promotional purposes, and take second place in B2C communications, right after video advertising. Still, their form, content and their purpose are changing, as they are being combined with other channels of communication and used with various modes of automatization. When thinking about email campaigns, think about making them actionable and useful.
Since people tend to trust their friends and families best, word of mouth is one of the most powerful resources you can use, and you can nurture and develop it through an email campaign. For example, you can build a customer referral program, and offer your customers a reward or a discount in exchange for the referral of your business.
Or, you can deliver a newsletter weekly or monthly, providing your prospects with the information they are interested in, and subtly reminding them of your existence.
#5 – Make Social Media Fun
It’s hard, or better yet impossible, to have a successful online advertising campaign without being present on social media. The choice of the right social media channel will again depend on the habits of your buyer persona, as well as the characteristics of the field you are working in.
As for content, the same rules as above apply – it needs to bring your potential customers some value, or be of some use. To create a bond between your client and your business, you will need your client’s engagement, so think about the ways you can achieve it.
A social media quiz or a photo contest concerning the industry you are in, offering a few products or complementary services as a reward, can get the engagement you need and word of mouth going, while also providing you with data relevant for your further campaign needs, such as email addresses.
#6 – Let Your Colors Shine
Your engagement matters too, so don’t be afraid to show your customers what you find important (as long as what you find important is within the norms of being socially responsible, obviously!). This will make it easier for your customers to identify with your brand, as you are into the same values.
You may think about hosting a charity event for the cause or purpose you find close to your heart. Raising funds for a new pet shelter is a great idea for pet stores, but not that bad for a neighborhood cafe either, if it attracts a pet loving crowd.
#7 – Creating Branded Merchandise
The truth is that people love freebies, so your potential customers will too. When considering branded merchandise as a part of your next advertising campaign, in addition to making your brand visible, think about giving real quality and value to your audience, something your prospects will actually use. To achieve this, avoid being too sales-y and invasive, and aim for subtle but catchy design.
You can share these products at special events, meetups, and conferences, giving your potential clients an exclusive feel. The choice of the merchandise will depend on your budget, but keep in mind that the best promotional items are those which are widely used and lifestyle-related. While being carried around with great pleasure, items such as water bottles, umbrellas, hats, bags, and journals are making your brand more visible to a wide group of people.
Don’t forget the smaller stuff, like lanyards, flags, posters, etc. which can also be used at event and meetups to highlight your presence and point people in your direction.
When planning your next advertisement campaign, try to be laser-focused on the needs and desires of your audience, instead of the promotional needs of your company. By providing quality and adding value to your communication with potential customers, you show them your respect and concern – a fair ground for a relationship which can only grow.
Need tips on how to promote your events for free? We’ve got you covered here.