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Which Media is Right to Reach Your Target Market? 16 April 2008

That’s probably one of the most often-asked questions my clients put to me…

Well, the answer is, it depends on your ‘ideal customer‘. (If you haven’t a clue what that means or who that is, then my Stop Working With Deadbeats! Attract IDEAL Clients & Knock Out The Competition Instead will help you hone in on what is potentially one of the most important elements of running your business.)

In a nutshell, you need to know your target buyers like the back of your hand before you can target them appropriately. Until then, you are pretty much wasting your time, expense and effort trying to reach them.

OK, for the point of this post, let’s say you know exactly who your ideal client is. By now, you should know that a) targeting has suddenly become much easier, and b) you know where they ‘hang out’, which publications they read, and so on.

Assuming you decide to advertise in a given publication that they read, make a note of whether any of your competitors are advertising regularly there. If so, that’s a good sign…

Now, phone up the advertising department for that publication and tell them that you are thinking of placing an ad, and that you’re currently researching the results of ads in the same industry (ie, those of your competitors). 

You will be surprised as to how honest they’ll be with you.

If it all sounds good, arrange a multi-run ad deal – ie, where you place a similar-sized ad in that publication for a number of issues (ideally, seven, but at least three if you can push to that). Make sure you include some kind of code for tracking purposes, and then measure the response you get. If it’s good, repeat the ad – it is obviously extremely well targeted. If for some reason it bombs, consider your ad’s copywriting and/or offer. Could either be improved upon?

The key to ANY advertising and marketing is to test, track, tweak and test again and again until you get the response you want. I covered more on this in a recent issue of my newsletter Communiqué for Success

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Advertising vs Direct Mail 18 January 2008

I received the following question recently, which sums up a lot of the emails I get from clients and prospects:

“I sell stress relieving and health giving ‘brainwave’ products, but seem to hit a brick wall with advertising. It’s really not paying off for me. Can you recommend any ways I can do better?”

––Kath Browning, via email

For small businesses, I don’t think advertising is necessarily the best form of marketing/promoting your products. Sure, you might well receive some response if your message is compelling enough and the desired target audience is reading the publication in which you advertise. Also, your product base is a niche one; one that is potentially difficult to explain and get across the benefits in the space of a typical advert.

In any event, I’d suggest using direct mail (sales letters, postcards, etc). It has a number of distinct advantages over advertising:

  1. You can target recipients much more precisely.  
  2. Costs are a lot more modest than advertising. The great thing with direct mail is that it allows for you to create a campaign to fit either large or small budgets.  
  3. You can see a response from direct mail very quickly. With a modest campaign to a known and targeted audience, you can acquire a mailing list, develop a compelling mailing (including a sales letter, flyer, reply card device, etc), launch that mailing and start to receive results in just a few weeks, if not months. This is faster than a typical advertising campaign (whereby you normally have to repeat adverts to get any result) – and a lot faster than waiting for the phone to ring.  
  4. You can test different appeals (called ‘offers’ in the trade) to determine which is the better message to run with for other campaigns. By making a different offer to randomly different portions of your mailing list, you can see which offer pulls best. As you try these different offers and different letters, you should find that one will do better than another. Use the better one, and then try to beat that in your next mailing. Eventually, you should get better and better response rates.   
  5. You can mail to the same list again with a slightly different mailing slant and still garner worthwhile results. Most direct-mail experts say that companies don’t get enough mileage out of their materials. Use them until they no longer produce any worthwhile results.  
  6. You can never run out of prospects. Use your imagination to find new niche direct-mail markets for your products, whether retail or business-to-business. Your list broker or direct-mail consultant should be able to suggest possible target markets that are worth trying.  
  7. When you place an advert, you have to be sure that your target audience will actually open up the publication and turn to the page where your ad appears. No one can predict or guarantee this. Because direct mail is (or should be) much more tightly targeted, then the likelihood is that your audience will want to read what you have to say. You have already identified these people as having a need for your products, so all you have to do is make sure your offer and outer-envelope message has a relevant appeal.

This is not a sell for my services! I just want to let you know that there are other, often easier ways of garnering the results you’re looking for.

If you do want to carry on with ads, the best way to achieve a better result is to:

  • Repeat your ad. You really do need to be consistent in your advertising (at least three consequent issues), whatever form of media you use.   
  • If you did your own design and layout, asking sales reps to help with that can really boost impact – it should be a free service when you purchase ad space.

I hope this helps, and I wish you success whichever direction you take.

Do let me know how it all goes.

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Building Trust + My Gift to You 19 December 2007

The festive 2007 edition of ‘Communiqué for Success’ is now ready for you. It answers such questions as:

• How do you get people to trust you and buy from you?

• What’s the difference between ‘affect’ and ‘effect’?

• How can you make your brochure magnetic?

• What is my gift to you?

• How can you add a few extra pennies to your pocket this festive season?

• What can you do to get free advertising?

• What’s the alternative to socks? 

 

All the answers (and more) are in this month’s newsletter.

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Word count for this issue: 2,117
Approximate time to read: About 10 minutes
Suggested props: Mulled Wine or Hazelnut Hot Chocolate

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You can see the current and most of the past newsletters by going tohttp://www.mediaminister.co.uk and clicking on the “F*REE stuff” link on the top menu. 

To take advantage of subscriber specials, etc, I would highly recommend you sign up to receive your very own copy.

You’ll also find direct links to my blog and other sites.

And it’s all freeeeeeeeeeeee.

Enjoy!

Tracey

PS – The direct link to the Decenber newsletter is —http://www,mediaminister.co.uk/cfs/11December2007.htm

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Free Legal Advice for Creatives 7 December 2007

A new ‘Law for the Arts’ service has been launched by the Legal Advice Centre (LAC) at Queen Mary, University of London. It offers free legal advice to those working in the creative industries on issues such as copyright and trademarks. 

For further information, visit: the LAC website.
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How Buttons Drive Up Sales 27 November 2007

The latest issue of Communiqué for Success is out. It answers such questions as:

• How do ‘hot buttons’ impact on your business?

• Which ultimate resource can increase your sales by as much as 70%?

• How can you make your business words magnetic?

• What is the easiest way to get free advertising?

• How can you ensure your networking pays off?

• What should you do when business slows down?

All the answers (and more) are in the latest newsletter.

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Word count for this issue: 1,911
Approximate time to read: About 8 1/2 minutes
Suggested props: Winter Detox Juice or Hot Chocolate

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You can see the current and most of the past newsletters in full colour on the web by clicking here To take advantage of subscriber specials, etc, I would highly recommend you sign up to receive your very own copy – which will be sent ahead of public notification. Simply go to www.mediaminister.co.ukand click on the “F*REE stuff” link on the top menu.

And it’s all freeeeeeeeeeeee.

Enjoy!

================================

Add my RSS feed to your reader now so you never have to miss a post.

================================

Want to use this in your ezine, blog or website? No problem! Just let me know. I’ll send you a short resource box/bio to include at the end of the article.

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Top Advertising & Headline Words 23 November 2007

I’ve been a busy bee this month, and have just released another ‘can’t-do-without’ marketing tool…

The Top Proven 50 Advertising and Headline Words that WIN Business is a valuable resource that I refer to again and again to kick start my creative juices.

All the words in this handy checklist have been shown to be effective in just about any advertising, marketing or PR campaign. Words that have helped many businesses increase their sales by as much as 70%.

Order your copy now for just £3 (approx 4 euros, 6 dollars); the promotional price ends on 2 December.

Want to use this in your ezine, blog or website? No problem! Just let me know. I’ll send you a short resource box/bio to include at the end of the article.

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Fast-Track to More Profitable Advertising 21 November 2007

Advertising is BIG business. Each year 1-2% of ALL gross national income in the UK is spent on advertising. That’s a turnover of around £3.5 thousand million. A huge amount.

Unfortunately, a lot of that is wasted with ill-thought-out campaigns –leaving a negative ROI and a bad taste in the advertisers’ mouths. Which is why I have recently launched The Fast-Track to More Profitable Advertising.

This handy marketing resource should help you turn around your advertising efforts so they bring in big bucks.

At just £3 (approx 4 euros, 6 dollars), can your business afford to be without it? Order your copy now; the promotional price ends on 2 December.

Want to use this in your ezine, blog or website? No problem! Just let me know. I’ll send you a short resource box/bio to include at the end of the article.

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