Any business owner probably already knows that creating an effective advertisement is crucial to reaching new customers and driving sales. But there’s so many options out there, each having diverse audiences, it’s hard to really know where to start. So, let’s take a quick step back, and not forget the fundamentals as you wade in to the weeds of the advertising world.
FIRST THINGS FIRST
We Professional Marketers say this a lot for a reason. Who are you trying to reach? Defining your target audience is important because it’ll help you tailor your message to their specific needs and interests. This will make your ad more relevant and engaging and encourage people to act.
WHERE DOES YOUR AUDIENCE HANG OUT?
No, we don’t want you to lurk your audience to see where they’re hanging out on a Friday night. But you need to understand where they go for news, information and entertainment. This could be your local newspaper, radio, broadcast, podcast, and let’s not forget the plethora of social options available to them. Each venue has its own diverse audience. Newspapers, for example will by-and-large skew to an older audience with expendable income that’s interested in news and information that’s going on in the community they’ve decided to set their roots down into. TikTok on the other hand will skew to a much younger, (and sometimes impulsive) audience, with other places like Facebook and Instagram skewing somewhere in between. It’s important to speak to the audiences in the way that they’re accustomed to digesting information.
DON’T SLEEP ON THE HEADLINE CREATION
Your ad’s headline is the first thing people will see, so it’s got to be catchy and attention-grabbing. Keep it short and sweet, and make sure it communicates the key benefit or message of your product or service. And remember to mold your messaging to your audience.
MAKE IT PRETTY
Visuals are also key when it comes to creating an effective ad. Use high-quality images or videos that are relevant to your product or service, and appeal to your target audience. Make sure your visuals are consistent with your brand’s identity, too. And remember to mold your visual messaging to your audience (do you see a trend here?)
CONTENT RULES THE LANDSCAPE
When it comes to the content of your ad, less is often more. Avoid cramming too much information into your ad, as it can be overwhelming and confusing for your audience. Focus on one key message or benefit and keep your language simple and easy to understand. And remember, mold the… OK, I think you get the point about understanding how to speak to your audience.
IS IT BENEFICIAL?
Speaking of benefits, make sure your ad communicates your unique value proposition – in other words, what sets your product or service apart from your competitors. This should be a benefit that your target audience cares about and is willing to pay for.
SHOW MOBILE SOME LOVE
With so many people accessing the internet on their phones these days, it’s also important to make sure your ad is mobile-friendly. Test your ad on a mobile device to make sure it’s easy to read and navigate and ensure your website or landing page is mobile-optimized, too.
SHOW EVERYWHERE ELSE SOME LOVE TOO
It’s important to understand that not all ad designs are created equal, and a billboard advertisement will be uncongested with information, keeping it clear and to the point, while a quarter page advertisement in your local newspaper can hold a bit more information. Whether it’s print, outdoor, and especially digital, be aware of the specifications each require to ensure that the advertisement looks clear and of high-quality when published.
TEST AND OPTIMIZE
Finally, don’t forget to test and measure the effectiveness of your ad. Try out different headlines, visuals, and calls-to-action to see what works best, and use tools like Google Analytics to track your results and adjust as needed.
There you have it – a few key things to keep in mind when creating an effective advertisement for your small business. By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to reaching new customers and driving sales!