Advertising 101 (Part 2)

Before we dive into the specifics of writing the perfect advertisement, I need to ask you a question.  What is the purpose of the ad?  If you don’t know what you are trying to accomplish with the ad, how will you know if you accomplished it or not?  Before answering those questions, let’s first consider the two basic types of ads.

Indirect Response Advertising.  Indirect response ads are about creating general awareness of your name or brand, and the idea is that when a consumer needs your service, he will think of you and reach out to you.  In other words, the response to the ad is not direct, but rather indirect.

direct responseSome people call this type of advertising “branding” because it is intended to build your brand.  It’s widely taught in our industry and is just one of many bad ideas being propagated by many of our industry “experts”.  Indirect response advertising is very expensive.

Sure, it plays to our egos because we get to see our face plastered on billboards, park benches, brochures, magazine covers, and display ads.  I call this type of advertising, “I love me advertising”.  It’s expensive, it’s unpredictable, and it’s inefficient.

We’ll get more into objectively evaluating different types of ads in an upcoming part of this series, but suffice it to say, you’ll go broke before generating business using indirect response advertising.  I’m your friend, and friends don’t let friends place indirect response ads.  Don’t do it!

Direct Response Advertising.  Good direct response ads result in a customer responding when he sees the ad.  It is a direct response to your ad, unlike indirect response ads where the customer hopefully files the information away and then again hopefully, when the time is right, responds.

Direct response advertising is very efficient.  It’s inexpensive and it’s very predictable.  You can carefully craft your message and then you can expect a certain response rate to your ad.  You can measure the ad’s effectiveness because the response is direct.  If the ad is bad, the response will be bad.

Show me a very successful agent and I will show you an agent who has mastered direct response advertising.  Direct response advertising coupled with an effective way to capture and manage the resulting responses is the holy grail of real estate marketing.

So that brings me back to my earlier questions:  What is the purpose of the ad?  If you don’t know what you are trying to accomplish with the ad, how will you know if you accomplished it or not?  My answer to that question is simple.  The purpose of my advertising is to generate business. It’s that simple.

I don’t advertise to build my brand.  I don’t advertise to feed my ego.  I don’t advertise because my sellers pressure me into wasting my marketing dollars on ads that accomplish nothing.  I don’t advertise for any other purpose than to generate business.  I hope that is your purpose in advertising too.

Of course, even the best advertising is not any good if you have no way of effectively capturing the new business when it comes your way.  That’s what my Ultimate Website system is all about, so I encourage you take a few minutes and check it out.  Maybe you already have effective lead capture in place for both your online and offline advertising, but if you’re not sure, check out my technology — it might be just what you need.


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