Business: The Four Golden Rules Of Advertising

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Helen Burns 1Helen Burns, a certified Business Coach with ActionCOACH, the World’s #1 Business Coaching Franchise, gives advice on advertising strategy…

We are all exposed to vast amounts of advertising from global organisations with very deep pockets. They focus on brand awareness and have budgets of several hundreds of millions annually to do so!

They typically wait years before they get a return on their investments.

So the likes of Apple, Coca Cola and BMW aside, the rest of us need to invest in ads that sell! That means you need to see a return on your investment within weeks or months and you need to know what’s working for you and what’s not.

For many people, writing ads is a hit and miss affair. You may have heard the saying “50% of my marketing works and 50% doesn’t. I just don’t know which is which is which!”

By testing and measuring, the success rate can be increased dramatically. But there is another way to get a head start on writing the ideal advertisement. It is one of the oldest and one of the best formulas for writing ads- AIDA; which stands for Attention – Interest – Desire and Action.

Your advertising piece must grab your target audiences’ attention. You could have a great copy but if it doesn’t get the attention of your target market in the first place it will be a flop.

The top 20% of your advertisement is the most important so spend time on getting your headline right. Here are some Headline Do’s and Don’ts;
Use your name! (name and contact details go at the bottom)

• Use the word You
• Use a loop
• Qualify the right reader
• Sell the benefits

Here are some headline examples:
How you can… 7 Reasons Why…
Here’s how… Attention all “Reader Group”
Announcing…. At Last….

Once you’ve gotten their attention, you need to keep them interested. One of the most effective ways to do this is by talking about the benefits.

What problem are you going to solve for them. Remember all prospects listen to one station- WIIFM (what’s in it for me). So spell it out here. If you have a special offer mention it here. Keep the layout and font simple and easy to read. A fussy ad just puts off readers.

Now that you have their interest you need to build their desire. Desire is about building a vision of what life could be like if they buy your product or service. Expand on your great offer if you have one, use sizzling words and testimonials, and highlight benefits.

At the end of the ad you need to tell them exactly what to do to fulfil that desire. Be specific and make it easy e.g. “Call 066 7123456 today to get your FREE gift. Offer ends this Friday” or include a coupon so you can measure the response to your ad.
If you focus on this simple formula your ad will be incredibly successful.

• Helen Burns owns and manages Helen Burns and Associates. They are located at 4 Greenview Terrace, Tralee. Contact 087-2863977. See for more

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