10 Tips to Avoid Wasting Your Advertising Money

‐ July 27, 2015

1. The desire for instant gratification. You have heard the old saying, “Rome was not built in a day.” It is true with marketing. The odds are that you are not going to boom your business with one ad or one direct mailer. A business will run one ad expecting hundreds of sales and will only get two or three sales and feel like the ad was a failure and completely gives up. Even though the money made from those 2 or 3 sales generated paid for the companies advertising for the next six months. Knowing what a customer is worth to your business will help you set realistic expectations.

2. Trying to reach more people than your budget will allow. You have so many advertising choices available to you today, choose the medium that you can afford to advertise with and stick with it. You are better off being a big fish in a little pond than a small fish in a big pond. Your best results will come from the simple formula:

Advertising Formula

That is the only formula for getting results, if you can only afford to send out one ad a couple times a year, scale it down and reach a smaller group more often. You will make more sales reaching 1000 people ten times, as opposed to reaching 10,000 people only one time.

3. Assuming you know best. The only opinion that matters is your customers and prospects. What do they need? What do they find valuable? What do they find irresistible? Ask them what they need and want and promote that instead. You need to know about your current customers before you can market to get more similar customers.

4. Unsubstantiated claims. If you make claims about your product or service, ALWAYS validate your claims, even if it is with testimonials.

5. Creating ads instead of campaigns. This one ties directly into 2 above. When a business is trying to reach more people than they can afford to do on a regular basis, they end up running ads and not creating campaigns. Campaigns move the market and create response. Just running ads is very much a hit-or-miss proposition.

6. Event-driven marketing. Having a special event to promote is good, but when every ad you run is event-driven, you condition the market to only buy when you have a sale.

7. Great graphics without great copy. Good graphics that tie into and support the message is vital, but the content or copy is what closes the deal. Look at it like if you are fishing—great graphics is like bait that gets the attention of the fish and your copy is the hook that catches the fish. If you just throw bait in the water you might attract a lot of fish, but will not catch anything. The same thing is true if you throw a hook that is not baited in the water, the fish will ignore the hook because there is no bait on it. The bait (graphics) and the hook (your copy) work together to catch the fish (your prospects).

8. Confusing response with results. This one is a common theme with many advertisers. The bottom line is you want sales, not people calling you randomly who are not prospects for what you sell or who do not have money to buy what you sell. The more targeted your advertising message is to the target market, the fewer unqualified responses you will get and the more sales you generate. Very few products sold today are true mass appeal products. Most businesses have a target prospect that they market to.

9. Ad is too general. Most ads that fail have one or more of the following missing: no call to action; no reason to buy now; no benefits displayed to the recipient; and generic, rambling and non- effective content. You want to be specific in what you offer, how it benefits the consumer and why they should call you now as opposed to later.

10. You do not understand why people do not buy from you. There are several reasons for this, but basically they all fall into the following:

  • The prospect is not familiar with you company – no trust has been built yet.
  • The prospect does not need the product or service you are promoting right then.
  • The prospect has a better offer from your competition.

If you have done your homework you will be promoting something your prospects need and want and find irresistible.

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