Thursday, June 26, 2008

Relentless Advertising -- Does it Work?

I just learned about a study conducted by Stanford University School of Medicine and Packard Children's Hospital as it relates to children and food choices.
In the study kids 3 to 5 years old were fed two sets of identical foods -- some in McDonald's wrappers and some wrapped in plain paper.
The conclusion of the research was the kids overwhelmingly preferred the food wrapped in the McDonald's logo wrappers.
Each child was given chicken nuggets, a hamburger and french fries from McDonald's, and baby carrots and milk from the grocery store... With one exception, significantly more children said the McDonald's-labeled product tasted better.
McDonalds spends an amazing amount of money to market to children and to develop brand loyalty at an early age. I know because given the opportunity, my 7 year old daughter is insistent about going to McDonalds if it's around lunch time and mom and I are out running errands. That brand loyalty translates into sales for McDonalds.
My marketing friend in Portland, Oregon comments on the study, "McDonald's has enough money to be seen and heard just about everywhere; the rest of us have to be more selective in choosing market segments and media opportunities we can afford to dominate. But even without a huge marketing budget, you can still follow thebasic principles that have kept McDonald's at the top of their category:
1. Have a consistent theme and spokesperson -- the Golden Arches logo has been there forever, and Ronald McDonald has been a significant part of the marketing effort for decades.
2. Establish a long-term plan, and stick with it. The most successful markets map out a year at a time, and they don't cancel their ads after a bad weekend.
3. Make an offer. A small portion of McDonald's advertising is forimage, but most of it gives the target consumer a specific benefit-- a coupon, a new product, a movie tie-in -- for doing business
with them today."
Using these basic fundamentals can spell the difference between success and failure in your advertising campaign.
Remember if you are looking for ways to impact the market in Atlanta using these principles, I've had lots of success helping clients get results with radio. In fact, one of our medical clients consistently gets 50+ patients per month from his advertising with us. If that sounds like the kind of results you'd like to see in your business, drop me an e mail at

Friday, June 20, 2008

A Bonafide Guarantee

The other day I was working with a client trying to pull something together for an end of the month advertising program. He was understandably concerned about return on investment as any smart business person would be. His question was if I spend "x" amount with you, can you guarantee me that I'll get "x" dollars in new top line revenue?

I answered him with what I knew I could guarantee. His business had been soft so far this month. If he didn't do anything, I could guarantee him that he would finish the way he had started the month if the current trend continued.

The reason you advertise is not just so I can make a sales goal. It's because you need more sales and more sales only come from more people who know who you are, what you do, and how to get in touch with you.

Stop your advertising and I can guarantee you the following:

1. You'll lose customers

2. You'll miss your targets

3. You'll lose market share

4. Your revenues will go down

5. Your cash flow will go down

6. Your profits will evaporate

Those are just some of the guarantees I can confidently make to you. These are facts substantianted by years and years of research.

Another fact substantiated by primary source research is the Fish is getting results for their advertising clients -- even in the midst of a struggling economy. If you'd like to hear about our clients' success, drop me an e mail at and I'll send you FREE an mp3 audio testimonial that you can play right on your computer. Then you can decide if you'd like to explore getting Results With Radio!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Fixing the Holes In Your Sales Funnel

I have a friend in Portland, Oregon who is not only a great businessman but also an incredible advertising guru. In one of his recent blogs he wrote about fixing a company's sales funnel.
He said if your advertising is not producing the results you want, there are probably two issues to consider:
1. There's something wrong with the advertising
2. The advertising is fine but there is something wrong at your business. Prospects are entering the sales funnel but you are letting them slip away before they become customers.
My friend goes on to tell a story about how he and his wife needed a fence installed in their backyard. His wife called three companies.
Company #1: salesman came out, took some measurements and promised to call with an estimate. My friend never heard from him again.
Company #2: The receptionist at this fencing company took my friend's wife name and number. Nobody ever called back.
Company #3: Salesman came to the house. Took measurements. Went through all the options available to my friend and his wife. Company #3 got the job. Walked away with a deposit. He got the rest of the money when the job was complete.
Companies #1 and #2 may say their advertising is not working or they may say the economy is slow or they might cite both reasons why their top line revenue numbers are not coming in where they projected.
My friend wrote that either one of the companies could have had his business if they had practiced a very simple sales principle -- follow up.
The question then becomes how many other jobs have they lost because they are lax in this one area.
How many jobs are YOU losing? It could be that you need to use some putty to fix the holes in your sales funnel.
If your funnel is working well and you just need more people entering in, then send me a note at I've got a number of success stories where I've helped companies double their top line revenues. Perhaps I could help you do the same.

Monday, June 16, 2008

So You're Thinking About Cutting Back Advertising?

In times of perceived economic downturn, I've heard advertisers say they are planning on cutting back on their advertising. Behaviorist tell us that fear of loss is a far stronger emotion than desire for gain. If you plan on cutting back your advertising, there is a strong likelihood that you'll loose your footing and give ground to your competition.

One advertising expert has a few questions and observations on the implications of cutting back your advertising that I thought might be worth sharing.

(1) What if tonight your competitors decided, effective tomorrow morning, they're all going to cut back their advertising? Would they, or would they not, be playing right into your hands? In cutting back your advertising, what do you think you would be doing?

(2) How do you hope to replace the 30% of your customer base you lose every year through attrition?

(3) What your business needs is more customers and more sales! If you cut back your advertising, how will you get them?

(4) Today you need only two things to succeed: new business and repeat business -- but you can't have one without the other, can you? You get new business by advertising, and you get repeat business by advertising consistently. So, how are you going to attract new business -- and therefore repeat business -- if you cut back on advertising?

The same advertising expert encourages his readers to Google "Advertising in a recession" and he says you'll download more supportive data for advertising during a recession than you've got photocopy paper.

The lesson of every recession is the same. The businesses that end up stronger after the recession is over are those that maintain competitve top-of-mind awareness during the recession.

I've got one client who quantified 645 leads from the Fish and did over $500,000 in new business from those leads. This client, obviously, DID NOT cut back on his advertising. He reaped the rewards of finding new customers. If that sounds like something you'd like to do, drop me a line at and I'll send you his story.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Atlanta Traffic & Your Advertising

Forbes recently reported that Atlanta traffic is the absolute worst traffic in the United States.
Forbes says, "Here, in the fastest-growing city in America, more people flood the roadways than the infrastructure can handle. Commuters spend 60 hours a year stuck in traffic ... If that weren't bad enough, Atlanta is so spread out that only 29% of drivers get to and from work in less than 20 minutes ... and 13% spend more than an hour getting to work ... "
A recent article in the New Yorker said that nine out of ten people travel to work by car, and out of those, eighty-eight percent drive alone.
For those of us who travel in this mess everyday, this news is nothing new under the sun. My question is how do we turn this "trapped" audience of commuters into viable new business for you.
One copywriting expert says that drivers can't read, can't watch DVD's, can't watch TV, and have limited patience for learning while crawling through jams. Still a good percentage of these people are going to be somebody's customer.
These are people with wasted hours that cannott be replaced. For savvy marketers, this could represent an opportunity to be the most exciting part of your prospect's day.
If we hold their attention with compelling programming, you can have their undivided attention when your sales message comes on.
Turn the "trapped in traffic" problem into the "trapped in your message" solution.
I've got a number of clients getting great results going after this trapped consumer. One of my most recent successes had a client posting record top line numbers because of his advertising on the Fish.
If you'd like to hear his story, send me a note at or call 770-328-1938.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Pregnancy and Advertising

My wife and I found out recently that we are expecting once again. I love the way people say "expecting." It got me to thinking how much alike a pregnancy and a good advertising campaign are alike especially when you are "expecting."
When you are first pregnant, you may go for some time without any outward signs of your pregnancy. Just because you don't "see" evidence of the pregnancy doesn't mean you aren't pregnant. It's much the same with your advertising campaign. You may start a campaign and have great expectations but those first few weeks on air can often times be just like those early days of a pregnancy. You may be airing your campaign without a lot of responses. Never fear. Something's growing. You have to give it some time.
As time goes on, the baby grows and grows until it looks like mom is about to pop. The same can be said of your advertising program. As you nuture it and "baby" it, you'll begin to see that your results begin to grow. What's imperative at this stage is patience. Just like the baby takes some time to be knit together in the womb, so does your successful ad campaign.
Then the glorious day comes when the baby makes his entrance into the world. All of the pain of contractions and delivery are quickly forgotten when you behold the joy before you. Again, a successful ad campaign can go through contractions and there may be times you feel like you are giving birth. But, when the results come forth, there is jubilation especially as you see your top line revenue numbers increase through the stratosphere.
One of my clients just birthed his biggest month ever thanks to his ad campaign on the Fish. There were some contractions and some delivery pain but the end was well worth it.
Much like my wife and me, my client was "expecting." What are you "expecting?" If you'd like to see how you could give birth to a successful ad campaign, drop me a line at
When it's all said and done, you and I can swap cigars and celebrate together.