I have never done this before and I never give anything away for free. But today is different and I want to give something FREE to everyone.
Headlines are key but they are also usually misleading. Our friend Owen Frager is a master of getting folks to click. So is the media. A completely misleading headline that grabs the reader to do one thing. Click. Hopefully READ! It works!
Hook, line and sinker or (stinker). Isn't that what advertising is about? So you give something away for free and at the same time create a sense of Urgency! Well done!! Click!
Of course I don't think I can use this headline every day. It may not be as effective tomorrow or the next day or next week. But I do give something away free with every post I make. Hopefully give something of great value. You are the judge. But you don't have to be the jury.
You can't sensationalize everything and expect to have credibility. However it did work well for decades for the National Enquirer. Mainstream simply copied what works. Guess what? It works!!
Now so that my readers don't get annoyed with me for this misleading headline I must give something of value, hopefully GREAT value to compensate for that. So here it is:
Before I was investing in domains I was investing in advertising for the products I was importing from Asia. I was forced to do that when I broke my back and could no longer travel to do trade shows. I was bedridden in my mid 30's back in the late 1980's for nearly 5 years. I lost everything (which was not much) because I was paying for shows 1-2 years in advance and I physically could not get there. I lost all those deposits and went broke. So I had to make a living from bed and I did. I learned about advertising in trade publications. Then in the mid 1990's, advertising my Adult Vanity 800 numbers. I learned a lot about advertising. Was in over 100 publications and could never find enough. Here are just a few things I learned along the way. I prefer industrial or business to business advertising and business. to begin with. I try not to deal with actual consumers or target them in any way.
- NEVER run an ad ONE time. It's a waste. It won't work and with lead times of 2-3 months, if it did work, it might be too late to take advantage. (Only exception is a Superbowl ad that gets free play)
- Run an ad for a minimum of 3x with the goal to stay in for a year or more even if you are losing money. Just breaking even is SUCCESS!!
- Use BOLD and CAPS where you can. It helps it to jump off the page.
- Better to advertise in monthly publications than weekly or daily. The shelf life on a monthly could be years. The shelf life on a daily is a day. The shelf life on a weekly is a week or two.
- 4 color is expensive, 2 color works almost as well For a fraction of the cost.
- Try to use the same basic ad everywhere to create a brand
- Small ads work well. A small ad running for a year that costs $1000 will out perform a full color page ad running one time that costs $10,000. Go figure.
- Advertise in classified section using a display ad. Cheap and effective.
- Start small and grow your ads. That shows success and demand. I started with one Inch ads. Doubled to 2 inches. Then 3 inches. But never went larger than 1/4 page.
- Make sure you are in a good position. Ads can only be on the right page. Left page ads don't do as well.
- Trade publications are golden. Read by many and a shelf life of many years. Same with adult magazines. Shelf life is a VERY long time!
- Consumer advertising is much different. You need more pizzaz.
- Possibly the single most important question to ask. Is the magazine paid or is it sent out for free? Paid trade publications generally would outperform free publications 3-1 or more.
- Track each and every initial phone call. The most important info I could extract from a new caller was where they heard about us. I would not even talk to them without that info. It was that important. How else could I prove which magazine worked and how much bang for the buck I could get?
- Grow your ads in the publications that do well. But there is a limit. You may find that the 2 inch ad outperforms everything else. Why? Who cares. I follow the numbers and repeat, repeat, repeat. Human nature is an interesting thing to study.
- The most effective and money making ad I ran was 1 or 2 inches and cost me $8.88/month and would bring me in thousands a month in NEW business.
- Brand your FULL Name and Logo and brand it BOLDLY! Never EVER abbreviate your own name. That's for others to do and for you to adopt.
- Make long term deals to lower your ad rates
- Make your own ads and save 15% by being an in-house agency.
- Critically look at your ads when published or before and keep improving it. Even small ads can take years to perfect. You mold it and polish it until it is all it can be.
- Copy elements of other ads in different publications run by large companies inserting your own info. Pay attention to color, placement and what part of the ad is designed to catch your attention.
- 21 applies to brochures, handouts and all the rest. Copy the best. They spent a LOT to figure out what works. What colors are best etc.
- Advertising online is much different but the goal is the same.
- Advertising on TV is much different but the goal is the same
- Advertising on Radio is much different but the goal is the same.
Add your own advice. There is so many variables and ways to advertise. Some sell the sizzle, some sell the steak. Both work!
And the #1 advertising channel is?? The most effective. The most economical. The HOLY GRAIL. WORD OF MOUTH!! Still is and always will be! Just because you are online does not change that FACT! Those that argue with that are simply fools and let me prove it.
I never heard of eBay via Google. I never heard of Amazon via Google. I never even heard about GOOGLE thru Google!! So if Google is your answer to word of mouth, you are wrong. I never found a domainer or domains site via Google. I never found Moniker or Godaddy or Directnic via Google. I did find all of them via word of mouth even tho I was on the Internet. So if everything you believe starts and ends with Google, you are lacking common sense and don't have a handle on reality.
Go look at the top 20 services or sites you use and tell me how many you found via Google???? I REST MY CASE!! Google is simply a BONUS!! Relevance is your key to Google. All the tricks in the world won't win over relevance for the longterm. DOLLARS are your key to Google.
And of course the headline is key. But in sales, you CAN'T be misleading. So you have to be clever and funny and hopefully folks appreciate it.
Cal Worthington used to ride a tiger in his automobile commercials in Southern California for decades. "Go see Cal, Go See Cal, Go See Cal" was his jingle.
Crazy Eddie in New York had a style until he was busted back in the 1980's.
GEICO, Affleck, State Farm, Progressive, Liberty are ALL about their commercials. Their humor. Hopefully if you laugh you will like them and buy their product. Insurance stinks and is boring, but they made it fun! Good Job!! They sell sizzle with a little steak.
The difference between a successful company and product may come down to one thing, your advertising. That and SALES are what CREATES the brand to begin with. Circulation creates the brand. Other people repeating your name makes the brand. Quality makes the brand. Usefulness makes the brand. The brand is something that is a residue of what you do or what you make. The brand is built day by day. with blood sweat and tears. The brand may take years to build but can be destroyed with one bad decision.
GTLD's have little circulation and it is splintered and there is no rhyme, reason or brand. Compare that to .com. The MOST SUCCESSFUL FRANCHISE IN HISTORY!! Why? Not because I said so, but because the Fortune 1000 said so. The Fortune 10,000 said so. There has never been anything in HISTORY with more advertising and it accumulates with every passing day. Recognize and embrace that FACT that has yet to be discovered by the masses or the media or even the advertising industry itself. Do you have to wait for THEM to tell YOU what should be OBVIOUS????? If you do, that's the definition of chasing yesterday. Your job is to figure out tomorrow before others do! That's BUSINESS!!!! That's OPPORTUNITY! That's the way it really works.
We can be fish and swallow a headline hook, line and stinker or we can study what works and what fails. And WHY! Studying other people's mistakes and successes are a lot cheaper than wasting your own valuable time and dollars!
That was ail FREE and the only thing misleading was "Today Only" cuz you can come back tomorrow and read it again. And possibly the"supply" which could be defined as unlimited.