5 Reasons Your Ads Aren't Working

Friday, June 10, 2011

I believe that advertising isn't dead, and that it can still be very effective if done right. The problem is that many people rely on the ad alone when in fact it is just one layer of many in a strategic marketing campaign. If you're seeing little to no return on investment for your ad dollars, here are some things to consider:

Does the place you're advertising reach your target client?
Seems like a no-brainer, but I am always surprised when I hear high-end wedding professionals complain that their ad on a site or in a magazine that targets the mass market with a lower budget spend didn't work. It's not that those sites or magazines don't work, it's that you may be too expensive for their readers. Choose an advertising platform that reaches the client you want.

What does your ad look like?
If your ad uses low-res photos and is pixelated or uses outdated fonts like Scriptina, you're doing yourself a disservice. Consider working with a professional graphic designer to create your ads. A tip from Susan Moynihan from the Engage!11 media panel last week: use your ad to push the envelope and inspire, much like fashion ads do.

Is your website accessible anywhere?
If a bride or groom is inspired by your ad, but can't access your website on their phone because it's in flash, they are going to move on to the next company on their list. May seem unfair, but that's the way millennials consume information and shop. Trying to fight the generational consumer habits of your target clients is a losing battle.

What does your online presence say about you?
When was the last time you updated your blog? The galleries on your website? Are you using social media to complain or solely brag about yourself all the time? Do you talk about clients in an unflattering way online? All of these things can build or break trust with potential clients. Your ad may have piqued someone's interest, but your online habits may have turned them away.

What is your followup protocol?
It's not the fault of the website or magazine you advertised with if you can't return emails or phone calls. As I mentioned earlier, today's couples are an instant gratification generation. If they can't reach you in a timeframe that matters to them (not to you), they're moving on.

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