Advertising is a complicated topic, whether it’s digital advertising or marketing through traditional media. A lot has changed throughout its lengthy history, with new media coming along every few years to offer advertisers bigger, better, cheaper or more efficient ways of reaching their audiences.
As many opportunities as different forms of advertising you can come up with, there are always misconceptions to go along with them. The JumpSIX Marketing team can guide you through some of the more general, outdated misconceptions about advertising, which are as relevant to your digital marketing presence as any other form of promotion.
“We Don’t Need to Advertise – We Have Word of Mouth!”
Possibly one of the most common, and often most frustrating, statements heard in marketing departments from the higher-ups is that advertising is simply unnecessary. This can be heard in all sorts of industries and businesses – from larger companies to smaller start-ups that would benefit the most from a good ad campaign. Even a company like JumpSIX Marketing hears this from those outside the industry with frightening frequency.
Don’t get us wrong – word of mouth certainly is a great way of building your reputation. In fact, it’s one of the best, but it can only do so much. Getting your name and reputation out there through word of mouth requires a certain momentum that’s hard to maintain when you’re busy running a business. A new, trendy start-up restaurant might have an initial explosion of positive buzz that has customers lining up at the door, but if you don’t go on to capitalize on it with a well-planned marketing strategy, it will inevitably slow to nothing.
Take a look at the biggest, most successful and longest-lasting brands, whether it’s a giant chain supermarket, soda brand, or fast food service – do they advertise? They certainly do – in fact, they spend more on advertising than anyone else. When we said fast food and soda, two brands probably popped into your mind. McDonald’s and Coca-Cola. These brands have reached the point where simple words and phrases cause you to instantly think of them. They still spend millions of dollars on advertising each year. If these established names that have existed for decades, with all of their money, reputation and branding success, don’t rely on word of mouth – you shouldn’t either.
“Advertising is Intrusive and Everyone Ignores It Anyway”
It’s definitely true that there are ads that we all hate. They might be cheesy and old fashioned, they might be plain annoying, they might even be outright offensive. But even the most irritating ad works on the most basic level – it gets stuck in your head. You might not even realize it’s happened until after the fact, but there’s a 99% chance you’ve used a business, service or product because when it came time to buy, their irritating jingle got stuck in your head, making them stand out. Their location may have even popped up first in your mind because you see them over and over again.
We’re not saying you need to go out of your way to be annoying just to get attention – although some advertisers have gone that route before – but writing off ads as unsuccessful just because they’re unbearable is a mistake. You should also remember that different things appeal to different people and an ad that one person finds grating might be hilarious to someone else. There are also plenty of ways to make an ad memorable without it being for all the wrong reasons if the time is taken to plan and produce it.
“We Can Do Our Own Marketing Much Cheaper”
There’s a frequent assumption many business owners make that all advertising is pricey and that it’s cheaper and just as good to do it in-house. Sure, if you’re running a huge corporation that can afford to employ an entire JumpSIX Marketing-style marketing department, fund them as much as they need and have enough oversight that they stay within your branding guidelines, doing it in-house may work. But a small business or store with no marketing pros on the payroll is going to suffer. Furthermore, JumpSIX Digital Marketing employs a staff of highly trained, certified, and knowledgeable individuals. We help our clients achieve their marketing goals more effectively and efficiently because we have the experience and know-how to do it. Such digital marketing expertise would take an in-house individual or team years to learn and leverage effectively.
Let’s go back to our small, new, independent restaurant. After the initial word of mouth excitement has worn off and business has slowed, what can they do to advertise without having to pay for it, and without anyone on their staff having the skill to do it? Flyering, asking customers to “spread the word”, hoping for a TV opportunity to come along, using social media within the limits of its free promotional capabilities – none of these will get you far. Even Facebook needs revenue sources to stay in business.
Not only that but if you’re distributing your own material, who will be making it? Who designs it? Who writes the copy? Who proofs it? Is there a branding guide in place? If not, can anyone on staff write one out? The questions quickly mount up, and soon enough you realize you need a whole team on hand to help. The only way to make an impact is to put the money into marketing.
As for it being cheaper to do some DIY advertising – this is only true in the short term. Looking ahead, good advertising is an investment. It might cost some money initially, but, if it’s done right, it will pay off in a big way as time goes on.
JumpSIX Marketing and Industry Understanding
These are only a handful of misconceptions about advertising and marketing. There are plenty more that we can cover in future blog entries, but if you think your business, restaurant, store, whatever it is you’re looking to promote needs professional advice and guidance, contact JumpSIX Marketing today. We have the team to handle all of the complicated, multi-layered challenges of making sure people know who you are. Contact us today or view the JumpSIX Marketing website for more information.