Here’s how to avoid a common advertising mistake, which loses small business owners a fortune.
Who (not how many) are you reaching?
The next time you are thinking of advertising, remember that the numbers come second.
Most small business owners buy advertising, based on the number of people who will read, watch or listen to the advertisement. That’s how to buy ineffective advertising. You see, it’s not about the number of people who will potentially see or hear your ad. It’s about who those people are.
The ad reached 125,000 people for just $475!
I was prompted to write today’s post, after a reader emailed me to say she had recently paid for an advertisement that went into a newsletter, with a readership of 125,000 people. She explained that whilst the readership “wasn’t an ideal fit”, she thought $475 to reach all those people was a bargain.
Her advertisement generated 9 responses and no sales.
Here’s what she got, in return for $475:
- 7 responses came from pushy advertising salespeople, trying to sell her more ads.
- 2 responses came from people who were totally unsuitable for the service she was advertising.
Like most small business owners, she was seduced by the number (or reach) of the advertising, rather than who the advertising was reaching.
In short: Before you invest a penny on advertising always, always find out who your ad will reach, before you concern yourself with how many it will reach.
Tip: Here’s some useful information, with examples, on how to get your advertising right.
When you market your business just like your competitors, you fade into the background. You lack impact. You become predictable and easy to forget.
- Over the years, I must have had thousands of pushy strangers hand me their business card. How many of them can I remember? None of them.
- Every day I receive impersonal marketing emails from people. How many can I remember? None of them.
That’s because superficial interactions wash over us. They leave no lasting imprint.
The human touch
What we do remember, are the people who sincerely reach out to us with something meaningful to share. We remember the people who recommend us to their contacts and friends. We remember the handwritten notes. We remember the people who respond, when we need feedback or support.
Business is all about people. If you want people to remember you, do something useful and memorable. Something that touches them. Something that requires thoughtfulness.
Hint: You can’t do this with copycat marketing or by automating your business relationships.
Recommended reading – How to make your business more human and far more successful too.