Advertising 101

Sometime around 2007 or so, we bought a full page ad in Doll Crafter magazine for an entire year. We got the inside front cover, which is the best spot you can get (other than the outside cover on the back). In the ad, we included a discount coupon good on our website. We spent a LOT of money doing this. Only four people used the coupon in the entire year. That was over-priced attention (advertising).

Another example: We wanted to get more local walk-in traffic to the ROSE doll show a couple of years ago, so we paid for an advertising wrap on the entire side of a Utah Transit Authority bus. We paid thousands of dollars for it, and fewer than ten people came to ROSE because of that wrap [update: I just read a report- ZERO people came because of the wrap]. Again, that was over-priced attention.

We tried advertising wraps on multiple company vehicles. Again, it was over-priced attention, and a complete waste of money. Also, at least with buses you have a pretty good idea where your ad is going to appear (i.e., it will be wherever the bus travels). But on your company vehicles, you have less control over where an employee is going to drive your vehicle. And this can easily turn into a liability instead of an asset.

Wraps are a waste of money.

In the early days of the internet, banner ads worked well, with an almost 80% click-through rate. But today it is much less than 1%. Some people are investing in banner ads and thinking they are being “hip” by advertising on the internet. But banner ads are now over-priced attention. They cost too much for the click-through rate you achieve. They used to work, but not any more.

Television ads are over-priced. Some of the younger kids are growing up not even experiencing TV at all. They are glued to their computers instead. When someone mentions TV, my joke response is to ask them, “what’s a TV?”, and I appear perplexed as I ask them. TV ads are a joke. And way over-priced.

Newspapers are dying everywhere. Newspaper ads are also over-priced.

Billboards are also over-priced attention. We bought one once, and kept it for about three months. It was a complete waste of money. Look around and you will see that people are not looking at the billboards while traveling. They are instead looking down at their phones.

Wait a minute. Look at the statement again. They are instead looking down at their phones!

You need to advertise where the attention is. They are looking at their phones. That’s where the attention is.

And what websites are they looking at? Social media websites.

The big three sites are Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube. That’s where you make your presence known. And that’s where you’ll get the best advertising for your effort, and at the least possible cost.