Monday, December 25, 2006

Week 18 - Direct Response Only!

The most important aspect of any advertisement is that you call the reader to action. Tell them what you sell, why you are selling it, how it will benefit them and then ask them to take action!

Now that sounds simple enough, but how many advertisements do you see (in fact stop now and have a look around you) that are simply offering no information? We see them all the time - companies run quarter page newspaper advertisements and leave most of the available space blank - a small headline in the corner might read “buy only the best”. Worse, it might not say anything…just the name of the company, as if we should be impressed, as if we should leap out of our seat and make a purchase.

One of the greatest business building minds of all time, Jay Abraham, calls this type of advertising “institutional advertising”. He believes it is conducted because the owner of the business is more interested in creating a masterpiece than they are in generating sales!

David Ogilvy, millionaire advertising executive and founder of Ogilvy and Mather, asks:

“What is a good advertisement… An advertisement that pleases you because of its style or an advertisement that sells the most?

Look at all the advertising you have done over the past few years – did it ask for a direct response or did it simply tell the readers how great your company is? This is not an attack on designers or other creative folks – they have usually spent years studying exactly what we humans find visually appealing. So don’t rule them out. Just don’t let them rule your advertisement! You control the headline, the wording and the call to action. They can control how they present this in a visually appealing way.

Some Direct Response examples:

1. Call now!
2. Return this coupon by mail for your free brochure
3. Come into our store with this advertisement
4. Visit our website and enter your unique code
5. Mention this ad for a free sample of our product

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