Ready, aim, fire. It’s hunting season for new customers.
Customers are moving targets. That’s one of the comments from radio advertising expert Roy Williams in a recent Monday Morning Memo. And he makes an interesting point. Think about your radio ad, and think of how many people are out there just waiting to hear it, let alone respond to it. If your answer was none (excluding you) you’re correct. Just how much time do you have to engage a brain. On a freeway you’ve got just seconds with an outdoor ad, and I really get a chuckle out of those outdoor advertisers that just have to tell the whole story, including a picture of their kid (or dog). Right next door to one of those boards you’ll see a national advertiser that did it right. I am constantly amazed that someone would waste several thousand dollars a month like that. Go to Vegas, you have better odds.
Enough about outdoor, let’s focus on radio advertising. To engage a listener you need to throw out all the crap you think you need to put in the ad, and focus on what is important to them. HOW are you different and WHAT will you give to them or do for them that will make their lives better? That’s all they want, not a catchy jingle, not a gimmick. And if you tell somebody something (i.e. your radio ad message), it better be true, because your dissatisfied customers will tell everyone they know that you don’t live up to your word. And that kind of PR takes a lifetime to wear off. As radio advertising creatives, we have a huge challenge: clients buying into a simple concept. Why, because they think they know what they want to hear. It might have been a competitor’s radio ad, or someone in a similar industry in another market where “that radio ad worked wonders”. Sure, good radio creative is worth looking at, but when did your business become a commodity? Truth is, it’s not. Your company and what you provide has its own unique identity and benefit and that’s what listeners respond to. Want positive ROI, keep it simple, focus your radio advertising on the customer’s wants – not yours.
Next, how good is your aim? Hopefully you’ve either hired an agency or a trusted and educated AE to put your 30 seconds of radio advertising fame) into the right places so the right ears hear it the right amount of times. You are not a media buyer? Let someone who has vast experience and the tools to do it most efficiently, create your ad schedule. You will have new customers calling on you. And that’s your job – to live up to your word and make customers happy.
Then, fire! Hopefully you’ve got a budget that allows a reasonable amount of time to run an effective radio advertising schedule. If your target station’s rates only allow you to run a handful of ads, you may want to consider either saving up for a more meaningful campaign, or finding other ways of getting your message out there. Radio stations offer a variety of spot lengths, :60’s, :30’s, :15’s all the way down to Clear Channel’s two second “blink” ads.
So…ready, aim , and fire away for results by using radio advertising in a smart effective manner.