What’s the most important thing in advertising / promoting? I’ve been asked this question more than a few times when it comes to marketing, particularly by music artist. Advertising costs money, usually a lot of it, the last thing you want is to donate your money vs getting a return on your advertising. I used to have a lot of different answers, all depending on who was asking and why…these days I have just one answer. The Most Important thing in advertising/promoting is…
Not just a good image, a really nice logo, a big headline, a bunch of product, portfolio, creativity, a nice layout, a product picture, etc.
No, the single most important thing is…
Sounds obvious right?Whenever you step up on stage to grab the microphone (which is what you’re doing when you advertise in any medium), you MUST have something to say. A story that the market wants to hear, an offer that cannot be ignored, something worth stopping to read.
You’d be surprised how so many fail to do this simple little thing. Here’s another way to think of it. Look at the newspaper and how many people read it, guess what, no one is buying it to read your advert (well, except you, your wife and your mama). They’re buying it for the news aka “stories.” People already have a purpose to open up the newspaper to read, but guess which articles they’re going to read? Give up yet? It’s the ones that “catch” their attention – the catchy headlines with a “story” to tell, especially if it’s something that they can relate too.
Ok for example…
If your advert is “XYZ for Sale” or some other none-newsworthy piece of content, you will be ignored, like every other boring story. You’ll get a small fraction of the results you could have…if you’d taken the time to find something to say first. This applies to music artist as well, which is the same as a business – IF you treat it as one. In the business world – well anything tactical, it’s 90% preparation and 10% execution.
So how do you know you have something say?
If your adverts headline replaced the main headline for the newspaper’s front page for a day, would anyone buy it? No one? That’s because you have nothing to say! Forcing yourself to think of your adverts as news stories (that happen to be about what you’re selling), will get you thinking about what your market wants to read, vs what you want to say.
Almost no one does it, but if you decide to dig deeper than “We are the best and we’re selling product X” You may find yourself in that sort of position we like to call ‘market leader’ or chief story-teller to the market – same thing (more on telling stories another time). Bottom line is, selling yourself before your product is more effective than slinging a pile of shit on the wall to see what sticks.
Examples: A scientific or medical breakthrough, that’s news. A story worth reading. How a poor man became a millionaire, that’s a story we want to read. How Mr X went from a lonely Nobody to a Mr Somebody…it’s really not that hard, just different.
When you find a story your market believes, is moved by (emotionally) and wants to spread, then you’ll have discovered the most important thing you need in your advertising, something to say.
Stay smart folks!
But then again – there is an alternative way to having something to say…a really big budget. You choose.
Main Website: www.WarzStreetJournal.com