Thursday, July 27, 2006

Time = Valuable: 10 Seconds & 1 Second to Get to the Point

Time is Valuable
Your time is valuable - you don't like people to waste it.

Your customers' time is valuable. They don't want you to waste it. If you were selling face to face, you wouldn't dream of being late to your sales appointment, right?

Same thing when it comes to marketing.

Problems of Creating Your Own Ads
Most small business owners create their own ads and marketing collateral. Unfortunately, what most of them do is create ads and collateral that reflect their homespun ways.

The result? A lot of wasted money - and, possibly, frustration at lack of results. Lack of results can be particularly harmful if the business is in a competitive industry.

How can a small business owner create ads that are effective and not waste valuable marketing budgets?

Simple Guidelines for Creating More Effective Ads
Marketing 101 says that you have 30 seconds to capture a person's attention and advertise your product or service.

Take that 101 guideline and toss it out. In this hyper Internet Age, 30 seconds is too long. No one pays attention for 30 seconds.

The new guideline is this:
  • 10 seconds to capture a person's attention via TV commercial or face to face
  • 1 second to capture a person's attention via postcard, flyer, etc.
Sounds scary? It should be. But this is reality. Ad clutter is everywhere. Marketers and advertisers are vying for the newest ways to advertise. In a future post, there will be more discussion on ad clutter.

But, don't cry though - there's hope.

How to Capture Attention & Get to the Point
Getting through ad clutter is the challenge of every marketer. Before you go out and spend your valuable marketing/advertising budget, plan your strategy and message first!
  1. Determine your product and your market - write it down, carve it in stone! You will need to refer back to this.
  2. Write down what message you want to get across - you will need to refer back to this.
  3. Write down what action you want your audience to take - you will need to refer back to this.
  4. Write down why your audience will want to take this action - this is the HOOK!
  5. Put #1-4 together and play with it - look for the hook.
  6. Remember - for face to face, TV, or other active/animated medium, you have about 10 seconds or less to hook them.
  7. Remember - you have 1 to 2 seconds to capture attention by printed flyer, postcard, or other printed material. Bright colors, big images, etc.
  8. Quickly Get to the Point! Use FEW words! Short sentences. Less is better!
  9. Present any information your audience needs to take the action you want: call, visit the website, email, time, date, place, etc.
Planning out your advertising is important for managing your precious marketing budget. As a small business, you need to get more bang for your buck. These 9 steps will guide you to do more homework and planning first - before tapping into your budget.


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