Savannah advertising is a many-splendored thing.
Just like the perfect hairdo, the Perfect Advertisement is hard to agree on. One person's tonsorial tour-de-force is another's follicular failure. May we offer some possible points of agreement?
The Perfect Ad:
- Presents a call to action only to people who are ready to act
- For the unready, it raises awareness and positivity about your brand
- Concise, with a clear benefit to consumers
- Memorable on an emotional level
- Promises exactly what your brand can deliver
- Connected to all your other forms of marketing and customer service
There's one more feature that too often is relegated to the afterthought bucket:
In other words, the profit margin between your advertisement and the revenue generated by it. What you might imagine to be the perfect campaign: the result of extensive market research, focus groups, testing, and timely deployment… but it actually returns less profit over the long term than, say, contacts you make at trade shows.
ROI must be your number one criterion for marketing and advertising decisions.
You could simply set out to forge a high-ROI marketing system through trial and error. Buy a dartboard and start throwing! Or, learn from companies that have the money to study the possibilities. Here's one example:
Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania studied several dozen smaller businesses over the course of seven years to gather data on this question: "What return on investment can I expect from each of many different modes of advertising?"
There were three primary findings.
- There's not a predictable correlation between results and dollars spent. In other words, the vagaries of circumstances prevent planners from applying any sort of formula that helps them make decisions on advertising channels.
- The message is all-important. Some factors that seemed to underpin effective messaging were believability, relevance, and novelty.
- Repetition was important. The study found that in years one through three of a new campaign featuring a consistent message, growth followed a roughly exponential curve. Year four saw either a flattening or continued growth; a good sign that year four should include some freshening, alteration or expansion of the initially successful campaign.
So, what channels are good for my business?
With so many possible venues for communicating your message, what is a data and ROI-driven best choice? Briefly, some of the more popular (although ill-advised) ones are:
Outdoor advertising - billboards: $3,000-$23,000 for a month
They reach massive numbers of people, but are limited in their ability to target a relevant message and may erode general goodwill toward your company if they are not maintained well or are perceived to be annoying, not to mention, you cannot measure their performance easily- or at all.
Radio: $500-$5,000 for a week
Will reach a bit less than billboards, but has the same targeting limitations and production of ads must be top notch to avoid the annoyance trap. Radio also suffers from a downward trend in listenership due to digital music channels.
Local Cable: $ Varies depending on ad budget, station
Multimedia can be broadcast on many channels, and includes both visual and aural material. Can be locally targeted but local cable ads aren't known for their high production values.
Broadcast TV Network Ads: $ A LOT
Offers higher prestige for a much higher price. When coupled with specific shows, there's a certain amount of targeting ability to your ads. Beer brewers and beauty products have this figured out.
Newspapers: $50-$100,000 (Washington Post)
Paper versions of this old standby are dying, which can actually serve up an advantage. If your target is the traditional type, this is a good choice. You will find that ad rates are higher than in the past, but still a good option. Online newspapers are still figuring out their business models but the potential for better targeting is there in nascent form.
Expensive. Nationally published magazine ads can help your brand once it's bigger, but go for local city or state publishing for local targeting if you are a smaller B2C company.
Direct Mail: $ Who knows?
Can be highly targeted and trackable, but surprisingly expensive when compared to an email campaign with the same message and graphics. Also, "junk mail" is a familiar target of scorn in today's environmentally-conscious society.
Online Adversiting: $.01 - $Infinity
The Case for Digital Advertising
A Nielsen study of over 300 consumer focused brands returned an actual dollar amount tied to online ads that were precisely delivered by way of purchase-based information. The average showed a return of $2.79 for dollar spent on digital ads. The highest figure was in the pet products and services sector at $5.79 per $1.
Digital Advertising Makes All your Other Channels Work Harder
BrandScience looked at the difference in ROI between entities that had both digital and non-digital (TV, Radio, Print, Movie ads, and Outdoor), and found some surprises. Radio saw a 4% increase with digital advertising added while both TV and Cinema ads brought in a 70% increase in ROI when partnered with online channels.
The Entire Buyer's Journey is Covered by Digital Touch Points
Learning from the auto industry, a McKinsey study of the car buying process found that out of 24 possible points of contact with more than 9000 car buyers, digital media dominated. Online messaging was second only to live experience in contributing to the decision to buy. Now if they could somehow deliver that new-car smell through a phone…
Digital Advertising can leverage Word-of-Mouth promotion
By FAR the best marketing is done by customers who recommend you to others. There's really no other mode of advertising that can touch the ability of social media or other online conversations to affect buying decisions.
Online Advertising is Efficient
Yes, it's inadvisable to paint all non-digital marketing with the same brush (there are times when the best form of advertising is not through a screen), it can be said that going online with your marketing is a cost-effective action. Comparing digital with Savannah advertising direct mail, for example, the best data show that digital is five to six times better in terms of cost per exposure.
People are spending more, not less, time on their internet-connected devices. They are spending their time on:
- Google (duh)
What do these websites have in common? You can advertise on all of them.
A cardinal rule of advertising is to place your message where the people are, and specifically, where they can understand it quickly and easily. TV, Radio and Print have all experienced steady declines while the balance of time is vacuumed up by digital media.
In your pursuit of the perfect ad, you'll eventually go digital. We've already addressed a large number of Savannah advertising needs with our awesome clients. Are you ready to become another Marketing Champ?