28th March, 2008
In my opinion, the big mistake most businesses with limited budgets make is spreading advertising out evenly (and therefore thinly) over the entire year. It's usually in the same publications or on the same radio station churning out the same message.
OK this gives you a constant presence in the market place but after a while it becomes a bit like wallpaper - you just don't notice it! Advertising should not be viewed as an expense but more as an investment. I can hear you all crying "you would say that", but the point of advertising is that you get a return.
What fills the bath quicker; letting the taps drip slowly for an hour or having them on full blast for a few minutes? Analogies are not my strong point but you get the idea.
Short bursts of high-impact advertising can really get your business moving so why not re-look at the way you allocate your advertising spend. Think of advertising in 'campaigns' and aim to have a campaign every quarter.
Decide what you want to achieve in your campaign i.e. more footfall, more enquiries or better brand awareness; and plan to use your budget to maximum effect over a shorter period.
It's not rocket science but we have had great success with some of our clients including the Sony Centres who used to run line and price advertising week in and week out in local and regional press. The first thing I told them to do was stop advertising. Once they got over the fact that an agency had told them to stop spending money they quickly saw that after two months sales had actually increased, proofing how ineffectual the advertising had been.
We now produce 3 or 4 big campaigns a year for them from which they can see actual results. A recent campaign to promote the Sony Nav-U satellite navigation systems saw a 647% increase in sales which is not be sniffed at!
In closing, remember that you don't necessarily need to increase your budget to make your press advertising more effective. Put a little bit of effort in and be more creative with it instead.