Imagine…it’s time to watch the Super Bowl, everyone in America is crowded around a television with their team jersey on, favorite beverage in hand, and tons of snacks on the table, while several major brands compete to have the most memorable commercial. Those commercials are discussed for weeks, months, and sometimes years after the Super Bowl. We know some of the figures for what those ads cost just to run. How much thought and planning do you think went into them?
In our digital society we are bombarded with advertisements on such a frequent basis that most people think that coming up with a creative and memorable campaign should not be that difficult. However, with such competition, the greatest task is not only to get noticed, but also to make that campaign effective enough to be acted upon.
Below are some of the areas to examine in order to create successful marketing campaigns. Ask yourself these questions:
1. Who is your target audience?
2. What are your specific goals and objectives?
3. What will your call to action be?
4. What medium will work best?
5. What is your main point of differentiation?
6. What incentives are you willing to provide?
Who exactly are you attempting to appeal to? You may have a fairly clear idea of who your clients are but for the purposes of the ad campaign try to be as specific as possible. The clearer you are about your audience, the more targeted your ad campaign will be, and the more likely you will be successful.
Goals & Objectives
You may have a general goal of getting more clients and if that is the case then a simple branding campaign will do. However, it’s difficult to track the success of branding campaigns. Some better goals would be to obtain a certain number of phone calls, get hits on a landing page within your website, have coupons redeemed, etc. All of these objectives can be tracked so that the campaign can be tweaked or trashed for better results.
Call to Action
Once you know your goal, it should be easy to determine your call to action. Make sure that your call to action is clear and unambiguous. Call now, Download free trial, Try our new (insert chosen product). They may seem trite and over done but the easier you make it for the target to act, the greater your success will be and the easier it will be to track your campaign. Feel free to have different calls to action for different mediums. It may be easier to track, and have a smaller barrier to entry.
Choosing a Medium
Where you choose to run your campaign will depend highly on your target market and your goals. We spoke earlier about TV but that is the most expensive place to advertise and doesn’t make sense for every industry. Other common advertising mediums are radio, direct mail, billboard, Internet, point of sale, and print. Within each general medium there are numerous avenues and you might choose to run a single campaign on multiple channels for the most impact. It’s important not to rule out print and direct mail simply because we live in a digital world. Studies have shown that readers enjoy the intimacy of a magazine and that most magazines are so targeted that the reader is likely to view and read each of the compelling advertisements. The same concept could be said for direct mail. If the campaign is well thought out, targeted, and interesting, it will likely be read.
Point of Differentiation
This is very important…you Must be clear about your point(s) of differentiation or value. If you don’t spell out what your benefit is, your campaign may get lots of attention but you will be less likely to achieve your goal. This is where many television ads fail. They focus so much on being clever that they forget about the product…and so does everyone else.
Not every campaign will need incentives, but let’s face it, we’re busy people. The more you can do to entice someone to contact you, the more likely they will. If you are not a big brand in your industry, your campaign may be more successful if you provide incentives. For instance, break the barrier to entry by providing a free trial or a reduced price for the first people to respond. Be careful not to cheapen your perceived value though. If you have a physical product, your free trial offer should be a reduced size and if you offer a reduced price, make it clear that it’s only for a limited time.
Once these five elements are determined, it’s time to get creative and begin the copywriting and design process. Be sure to stay true to the answers of these five questions and you will likely have a successful campaign.
Tell us about some of your campaigns and what you think made them successful…or not so successful.