Emotions Sell

This advertising critique is of the “Karate school” ad above.

First of all, nobody cares about the company name except the business owner, so that should NOT be the all-important headline of the ad.

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Instead, the ad headline should attract as many qualified prospects as possible with an emotional benefit they want, like self-protection.

You could use a straight self-protection benefit headline or a fear-based headline like, “The moment you need to learn self-defense … it’s too late to start learning!”

After that, this ad is missing many of the “hot button” emotional benefits of why people sign up for Karate classes.  I would add:

Protect yourself against robbery, rape, serious life-long injury

Gain more self-confidence

Enjoy a great workout and lose weight

Become better at focus and discipline

Gain flexibility, strength, balance

And since Karate is outside the norm for most people, they will naturally have some reservations about it.  Therefore, I would suggest offering the first class or two for FREE to get as many interested people into the classes as possible.

Takeaway:  The key to advertising that works is emotional customer benefits.

#advertising   #marketing   #creative  #copywriting  #headline  #usp   #karate   #offer  #companyname

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Why Advertising With Great Design and Photography Still Fails

This advertising critique is of the “Body Solid” exercise equipment ad above.

The attractive lady photo?  This still works, especially when selling to men, but even when selling to women because it gets attention.  I’m not sexist.  I’m a realist and I keep my advice real for you here. 

The design and photography are fine, but the all-important copywriting (ie words) are poor, and that is the key to an ad that produces results or not.

The prospect reading this ad is comparison-shopping from many companies like this, and this ad gives NO competitive advantages of why to buy from this company instead of their competitors.

This ad should include whatever competitive advantages they have in the areas of warranty, service, price, how long the equipment lasts and customer satisfaction.  These are the benefits that are going to make the company stand out and get the prospect to call them instead of their better-known competitors.

You can’t just list what you sell.  Those days are over.  Too many other companies sell the same thing in today’s very competitive world.  Your advertising must tell prospects the specific reasons why they should do business with you instead of your competitors if you want to stand out and get business.

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Takeaway:  Make a list of the specific benefits you give a customer compared to your competitors.  Use this in all of your advertising.  It will pay off in increased sales and profits.

#advertising   #marketing   #creative  #copywriting  #headline  #usp   #competitors  #B2B

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Why Ads That Sound Like Chinese Fortune Cookies Fail

This advertising critique is of the “Parenting Boys” and “Parenting Girls” book ad above.

I need a Kleenex. 

This is sad.   

Why?  So many of us parents need good advice in today’s crazy i-phone, social media, internet, materialistic, school shooting world.

But we won’t get it from these books because we won’t buy these books because the advertising appeal is wrong.

If you are in the middle of parenting stress (or just seeking knowledge), one of your top concerns is NOT the headline of this ad which is “To have rest at old age, raise quality children today.” 

A much better headline would focus on the benefits a parent does want most.  I would split-test two headlines.  The first would focus on eliminating current problems which my friends in the book industry tell me is when a lot of parents buy these books, like:  how to raise a child with less stress, arguments, conflict, disobedience and lying.  The second headline would be on general well-being like:  how to raise a happy, confident, calm and successful child

When it comes to our kids, we tend to be altruistic beings.  We put our kids welfare before our status at old age.

If you get your main advertising appeal wrong, your advertising will fail no matter how good everything else is.

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Takeaway:  Make sure your headline focuses on the benefits your prospects want the most.

Oh, and one final tip:  don’t have your headline sound like a Chinese Fortune Cookie saying!

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#advertising   #marketing   #creative  #copywriting  #books   #publishing   #marketresearch  

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Advertising Secret: People Want to Buy the #1 Product, So Be #1 at Something

This advertising critique is of the Salesforce billboard above.

To all of you who criticize this billboard … I say … you are … dead-wrong!

The critics say it should talk about the customer and not the company (this is usually true), or it shouldn’t brag, or this company’s products suck (not the point), or don’t criticize your competitors (wrong),

Let me tell you why this billboard is great advertising.  Most people follow the leader.  They want to “fit in”.  IT buyers may talk till the cows come home about how much research they do, but they are also thinking, “What CRM can I buy that won’t get me fired if it doesn’t work out great?” 

Salesforce, by being #1 and the market leader, gives the IT buyer this level of safety.  This is the same situation that IBM enjoyed back in their glory days when they were the market leader.  There was even a famous saying: “nobody ever gets fired for buying from IBM”.

Something in our subconscious mind says “If it is #1, then it must be good, so I’ll buy it”.

In advertising, knowing human nature is as important as knowing market research. 

Takeaway:  YOU can figure out and name what YOUR BUSINESS is #1 at … and then feature THAT in your advertising.  Go ahead and get creative.  There are no “rules” as long as its true.  Perhaps it is “#1 in Houston for making male executives over 50 look great with a new haircut” or “#1 in Topeka for Fresh Seafood Selection!” or “#1 supplier of next day transmission delivery for 1980’s Chevrolets” or “#1 course for Facebook ad buying for Realtors on a limited budget” or “#1 energy supplement that uses natural ingredients and Asian Tree Bark” or “#1 book on how to save your marriage using my unique TNT method”.  See what I mean?

Do this my friend, and watch your sales skyrocket.

#advertising   #marketing #creative  #copywriting  #billboard   #salesforce  #crm   #brag   #competitors   #compare   #IT   #ibm  #subconciousmind   #humannature   #marketresearch   #executives   #haircut   #restaurant   #supplier   #facebookads   #realtors   #supplement  #marriage  #sales

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Bad headline = bad advertising results

This ad critique is of the PETTHRIVE website homepage above. 

The headline is “Science, naturally”.

The product is a dog arthritis relief supplement.

The prospect is a dog owner whose dog is suffering with arthritis pain.

This dog owner is asking her vet for advice, frantically searching Google and seeing all kinds of products and claims.  Ditto for Amazon.  Ditto for Petsmart. 

This product is being viewed in competition with dozens of other, competing products.  It needs to say something really exciting and different to have a chance to cut through this incredible clutter and get the overwhelmed prospect to buy it.

“Science, naturally” ain’t gonna cut it my friend.  These are common general words that mean nothing in this giant sea of competitiveness.

What could PETTHRIVE say in their headline instead?  Off the top of my head, here’s an idea:  “Finally!  Fast natural pain relief for your dog with amazing nutrient featured on CBS News “60 Minutes” TV show … now 99% pure … guaranteed to lessen your dog’s pain.”

Do you see how this new headline promises the prospect what he really wants?  And makes the product sound different and exciting?

If you use a poor headline, it does not matter how hard you labor over your copy because your advertising will not be read.  Bad headline = bad advertising results.

There is nothing to debate here.  I’ve seen one headline outpull another with 19 times more sales. 

I implore you to test your headlines.  Let your prospects decide which is the best by what headlines they buy from.  This “cash vote” is the only vote that matters in business.  You will be amazed at the difference in sales that different headlines produce for you. 

#advertising   #marketing   # copywriting   #headlines  # pet  # dog  #supplement  #testing  #website
#Google   #Amazon   #Petsmart   #digitalmarketing

Do you love your dog?  I sure love mine.  Email a photo of your dog to me at mike@improveyouradvertising.com  and I’ll email a photo of my dog “Maya” back to you for fun!

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Why Your Advertising Is Boring And Does Not Produce Sales

This advertising critique is of the JEEP Facebook post above … and … please …  someone get me a coffee or coke so I don’t fall asleep … because this ad is so b-o-r-i-n-g and a nothing-burger!

The last time I looked, ALL new cars selling for over $20,000 come with synch technology that lets the driver “connect at your convenience” and have heating and cooling to “control your environment”!

This ad tells me what I would EXPECT and ASSUME already!  Nothing new.  Nothing superior.  Nothing exciting.  Nothing different. 

This is like advertising for a new TV and saying it comes with a remote control and sound adjustment!  Duh – of course it does!

One of the biggest sins in advertising is to be boring.  You must do research and tell people interesting things they have NOT heard before.  This is what will get and keep their attention – and get them to buy.

In fact, It is not unusual for me to spend 75% of my time researching a product or service to discover these interesting things, and only 25% of my time writing the advertising. 

In advanced marketing, we use something called Consumer Awareness Level.  In Jeep’s case, people are already aware of the features mentioned in the ad, so it does no good to use them in the headline.  Instead, they should research and feature what is new and exciting that would get potential customers to click on the ad and come into a dealership!

 #advertising  #marketing  #research  #direct response   #consumer  #Facebook   #Jeep   #auto  #digitalmarketing

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This Ad Critique Shows Why Being Too Clever Does NOT Work in Advertising

This critique is of the Ebay ad above.  It features the slogan “Fill your cart with color”. 

Now, why would that slogan get me to visit Ebay? 

It is very vague.

Are they selling crayons? 

Or coloring books? 

This is one of the worst ads I’ve ever seen. 

I am a prospective customer of Ebay, but I’m very happy shopping online at their admitted main competitor Amazon now.  Ebay’s advertising slogan of “Fill your cart with color” gives me NO good reason to visit Ebay. 

On the other hand, if their advertising told me why they are different and superior to Amazon, then I would be interested.

For example, Ebay’s ad could tell me I can buy thousands of slightly used products for up to 80% off new product prices.

Or Ebay’s ad could tell me I can buy cool, unique, handmade and collector items that not everyone else has.

But not “Fill your cart with color”.  That sounds like something a child came up with, or a 3-martini lunch! 

The point of advertising is NOT to be clever – but to sell, and to sell, you have to differentiate and tell the prospect specifically the benefits of your product or service. 

C’mon Ebay.  You can spend your millions a lot more effectively than this!  Heck, my 16-year-old son could do better than this!

#advertising   #marketing   #copywriting  

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