Income School Blog

When Should You Advertise?

Have you ever thought about what makes some of the ads you see effective while others just get ignored?

Time Square

Have you ever felt like there were so many advertisements, so many messages being yelled at you, that you couldn’t really see any of them?

The truth is that we’re constantly bombarded by companies trying to sell us this or that, or websites trying to get us to click and go to their page.  It’s enough to make anyone feel a little overwhelmed.  So what can you do to make your ad stand out among all the others?

We talked before about how to design effective ads by getting attention, generating interest, instilling desire, and calling to action.  But how do you make your ads stand out when it seems like everyone is doing this?

There are some strategies that marketers use when they advertise that can help to make their product stand out above the rest.  And at the core they all come down to advertising more than your competition.  At least, that’s what it looks like to consumers.  It’s really about getting your advertisements seen by more people, and having them recall your brand more than your competitor’s.

The first strategy that people use is a continuous marketing campaign.  They hit the advertising hard, and they do it constantly.  This gets their ads in front of a lot of people, but it gets expensive really fast.  Companies that do this may enjoy more sales or more traffic, but it’s not the most effective use of their advertising budget.

A newer and more effective strategy is called a pulsing strategy.  As you might imagine, people who use this strategy advertise really hard for a short period of time, and then take a break.  Then, they do another advertising push followed by another break.  You might think that this would be less effective than a continuous strategy, but the truth is that it’s almost just as effective.

The reason for this is that people recall ads that they see for a while.  Especially ads that they see quite a bit.  And while that ad or the brand being advertised is in their recent memory, they don’t need new ads to lure them to the business.  If it’s something they want, then they’ll come because they’re still thinking about it.  Companies use this strategy a lot in every form of media.  So if you’re a small website looking for traffic and you have a small but reasonable budget, think about advertising heavily during short spurts in an appropriate social media setting.  This will generate more traffic for less cost than a small but continuous marketing campaign.

Now there are companies that need some continuous advertising.  There are a lot of products that have heavy competition where all competitors advertise fairly heavily.  Think of car companies.  All the big companies advertise heavily and often, which means that the brand of car you’re most inclined to buy when the times comes for you to buy one is the one you’ve been hearing about a lot recently.  So what these companies often do is a hybrid of the continuous and pulsing strategies.

These companies often run relatively small marketing campaigns constantly, but then they do heavy pushes of advertising in a pulsing manner.  This means that if you’re hearing lots of advertisements for Toyota, it’s unlikely that you won’t hear at least one for Honda, Chevrolet, Ford, and Hyundai.  But, by pulsing their heavy advertising pushes, these companies get the most effective advertising for the money they spend.

In short, effective advertising means having good ads like we talked about before, while getting your ads in front of the right audience at the best times.  You don’t want your ad to be just one in a crowd, so when it’s time to advertise, hit it hard.  But be efficient with how you use your advertising budget.

Spending more doesn’t always equal more effective advertising.

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