My GIFs and Why I Use Them #4

Here is Round #4 of the GIFs I use in emails once in a while to get my point across a little more effectively or just to give someone a laugh. 🙂

Just use this GIF instead of typing, “Wow, that’s awesome!” And who doesn’t love Tommy Boy?

Who gags better than Jim Carrey in Dumb & Dumber?! And you’ll come across at least one reason to send a “gag GIF” over the next few days. Like the addition of 5 new Zoom meetings this week, or a new technology we have to learn because it will make our work lives “easier”. Ha.

And this is when someone requests some task or project from me… and I’m going to get it done PRONTO… and happy to do it!

Nick Cage. Long hair. 5 o’clock shadow. White tank. And a WINK. This is usually a “You’re Welcome” GIF to guys that are cool enough for it. 😎

Have a fresh Spring day! 🌷

Duane Christensen

Marketing Dude in Sioux Falls, SD

My GIFs and Why I Use Them #3

Here is Round #3 of the GIFs I use in emails once in a while to get my point across a little more effectively or just to give someone a laugh. 🙂

Spongebob happy pants is maybe for someone who might not be “on the same page” as me in the “what’s funny” department. Keepin’ it simple and fun.

But then… let’s just follow it up with a little Spongebob snarky pants for those who will appreciate it. A sense of humor is a must for your recipient. Thick skin. I usually send this in reply to a mass email from a coworker (with a sense of humor) who lets people know they’ll be out of the office the next few days. 😂 OR maybe include it in a reply to your boss after she sends you another email of no value whatsoever.

Alright… enough with the cartoons. This one just gets a laugh every time. When you’ve had it with dumbasses. Harsh, right? Or not harsh enough? 😉 I just can’t. Nope. Not doing it. See you on the dark side. I’m done.

This is when I need to let some dude know that I’m not playing around. Or am I? I’d really just like them to ponder on that for a bit. And you can’t ever go wrong with an Inigo Montoya quote from The Princess Bride.

Have a groovy day! ☮

Duane Christensen

Marketing Dude in Sioux Falls, SD

Ain’t Nothin’ Easy

I was going through some old marketing notes… and found something that I had written down and tore out of a journal-type notebook. Jagged edges, scribbles on it, but nothing written about WHY I wrote it or WHERE it came from. But I’m going to share it with you in a moment.

Things are a little uncertain right now with the Covid-19 virus… but there are some businesses out there who are innovating and putting their thinking caps on. There are categories that are seeing an increase in business. BUT a lot of local businesses are either way down, barely breaking even, or losing money. Those business owners aren’t sleeping well. They’re wondering if they can pay their employees or even keep their doors open. They’re concerned for their families. Their future.

The anxiety is high in this group of small business owners. It’s taking its toll on them. If you know someone like this, just reach out to them and ask, “How are you?” Don’t be afraid of the answer, just get them talking. You CARE about them, so, don’t go silent when they need someone to listen and help them get a few things off their chest. They’ll appreciate you so much!

Ok, so here’s the chicken scratches I found in a pile of marketing notes the other day…….

Ain’t Nothin’ Easy when it comes to good marketing these days.

Sure it’s EASY to spend money.

It’s EASY to place an Ad buy.

It’s EASY to try out the newest social media marketing.

It’s EASY to buy some ads on the new radio station, or the new billboard, the new bus bench, the new magazine, the new TV show, and on and on.

But it’s HARD to make advertising work. It’s hard and time-consuming to figure out what to say to consumers that will change perceptions and move them closer to buying from YOU and not from your competition.

Seth Godin said, “You’re going to need to go uphill in order to go downhill. The hard work is digging deeper than usual on the uphills – that’s the best chance you have to earn a downhill later.”

Making your marketing WORK… requires YOU to dig deeper.

Making your marketing WORK… requires YOUR MARKETING PERSON to dig deeper.

AND AT TIMES LIKE THIS… digging deeper is critical. It could possibly be life or death for your business.

At Results Radio, we don’t specialize in selling you radio, we specialize in making your radio advertising work. And keep working. And keeping your business growing. That’s what we do. Whether you need me or my team NOW… or in a few months from now, we’re ready to dig deep.

In the meantime, I would recommend that you find a few people to chat with about your situation. People who might not even always agree with you… but you appreciate their different perspective, ideas, creativity, opinions, etc. People who aren’t afraid to challenge you and make you DIG DEEPER…

…….

…….

……..

…….

Cuz the future could quite possibly be brighter than we could have ever imagined….

Duane Christensen

Sioux Falls, SD

duanechristensen1@gmail.com

My GIFs and Why I Use Them #2

Here is Round #2 of the GIFs I use in emails once in a while to get my point across a little more effectively or just to give someone a laugh. 🙂

This here can be taken 2 ways. I sincerely applaud you… or I’m being a smartass and you’ll know it when I’m using it in this manner. 🙂

The next two are essential. They are “Giddyup” GIFs. The Kramer giddyup is for when a more aggressive giddyup is needed. You’ll see what I mean here…

This particular giddyup almost has a feminine feel to it. Subtle. More of a congratulatory giddyup. Like… yeah… we’re awesome…

Whoops… I was almost going to slip a “Ken Jeong from the Hangover when they’re in the desert” GIF in here. We’ll skip that one and keep this post PG-13. But that one is perfect for old buddies / good friends who have a sense of humor.

I like the old Star Wars. And the characters. Especially Han Solo. Cuz he’s cool as shit. And hilarious. Or am I talking about Indiana Jones? Doesn’t matter. This Han Solo slide is for when I amaze the crap out of someone and do something that most people can’t do. It happens a lot. Or at least it does in my brain. 😉

That’s all for today. Kisses. ❤

Duane Christensen

Marketing Dude in Sioux Falls, SD

We Need Some Normalcy

All I’m sharing with you today are some of my GIFs that I put into select emails to friends, coworkers, and clients when I want to emphasize a particular emotion. These are just some of my faves that I’ve collected over the years. 🙂 This is an attempt to lighten the mood and give you something normal / not normal.

For when I’m a little frustrated, or want to call BS on something…

And I like Arnold.

When I know I’m about to make something really big or exciting happen. When I’m jumping in to take care of business…

I appreciate Blake’s “getrdone” attitude and humor.

There are times I email a client telling them I have an idea, but it’s not quite fully baked yet. So, I tell them I’m still researching, writing, and thinking, but to stay tuned…

Zach G!

Ah, crazy eyes. This is for when a group of you just witnessed or were emailed something that is verging on “off the rocker” or maybe some nervous tension…

Good for a few other applications as well.

That’s all for today. This is the first installment of a 4 or 5-part series. MORE TOMORROW. I have a slug of useful GIFs to share that can be included in some of your future emails.

Of course, you need to know when it’s appropriate and when it’s not. But we’re all professionals and can figure that out. Yes. That’s right. I trust you. Isn’t it nice to be trusted? Whole other issue. Sorry. Have a great day!!! 🙂

“Where Should I Advertise?” is the WRONG QUESTION

If you’re finally ready to shake up the world and make big things happen with your advertising… BUT… your first question is “Where should I advertise?”… then, you’re asking the wrong question. You’ve just skipped about 6 steps.

You should be asking yourself, “What can I SAY to people that will cause them to want to do business with me?” Only then… should you ask the question of where to advertise.

People don’t care about what you have to say in your ads until you’re saying something that’s relevant to THEM or something that entertains them. And what usually entertains people is Humor or a good Story. We all love a good story.

When you want to finally make your advertising work… let’s sit down and discuss your situation. I’ll help you understand the most important factors that make advertising work, plus all the little variables in the formula that can make or break an advertising campaign.

But beware… because I will talk to you about the mighty benefits of branding your business. If you only have the marketing mentality of “I need a fat and instant ROI with every ad investment I make” …then you will be disappointed and forever chasing something that really doesn’t exist. Not profitably anyway.

Of course, there are exceptions – but I’m writing to all those local businesses who have tried just about every kind of advertising and nothing has ever worked worth a crap. You’re frustrated, fed-up, and ready to flick the next Media Salesperson you talk to right in the brain.

Advertising that always brings instant results is the kind that only plucks the low-hanging fruit. Meaning, it’s just the tiny group of people who only need you at this very moment. And most of your competition is advertising TO THAT VERY SAME TINY GROUP…. giving you an even tinier slice of that low-hanging fruit.

But when you advertise consistently with a relationship-building message that engages emotions and causes people to like and trust you, then you’re advertising to that extremely LARGE group of people who may not need you now, but most of them will in the future. When you “brand” your business properly, those people will remember you when they need you. They’ll be more confident in doing business with YOU… even when your competitors try grabbing them as low-hanging fruit with their intermittent advertising.

When you BOND with people in your relationship-building ads, they’ll remember you because of how you made them feel. Because you spoke to them about THEIR NEEDS… not yours.

If you only “shoot from the hip” or “roll the dice” periodically with your “Act Now!” type of advertising, you’re just hoping and praying that people choose you based on luck… or price. Sounds like a bad bet to me.

So, I said that you need to figure out your message and your strategy FIRST. But you might not know how to do that. That’s ok. But neither do most other media and marketing people. Most of them know how to place a media buy and that’s it. And those salespeople hand off some client notes to a “creative” person, and they come up with a pile of garbage that doesn’t work.

I’ll help you with your advertising strategy. Your message. Your plan.

“Trying this… and trying that”… is getting a little old, isn’t it?

Duane Christensen

Email: duanechristensen1@gmail.com

Call or text: 605-940-7984

SiouxFallsRadioAdvertising.com

4 Common Ways to Do Radio Advertising THE WRONG WAY

radio advertisingHere are some great ways to make sure your radio advertising does NOT work for you…

1.  “Let’s try it for a couple of weeks and see if it works.”  

If you’re going to do this, it better be a Help Wanted or a Sale ad and you better have about 8 to 10 ads running a day. Radio’s big strength is constant, consistent brand building. And be prepared not to be completely Wowed for 2 to 6 months. And then… plan to be elated at the end of Year 1.

BUT… that’s ONLY if we take a tedious, creative, and intelligent approach to the message we’re putting out to the public. My specialty is figuring out what we need to say in your ads so your radio advertising works… and you grow because of it.

2.  “We just want a straightforward Radio Ad with the facts.”  

I heard this one the other day. He’s a fairly new HR guy. They’re doing some Help Wanted advertising. This local company has been using radio for recruitment advertising with me for about 8 years now. And it’s worked for them because we’re bold and creative in their radio ads. But the new guy just wants something “straightforward”. And we’re changing the ads from 60 seconds to 30 seconds. Ok, I’ll give him a break. He’s new. He doesn’t know that we went through this trial and error phase 8 years ago. The fact is… people like to be entertained. Especially, when they’re listening to the Radio… because that’s why they turned it on in the first place. So, if we weave a persuasive message into an entertaining and Non-Ignorable radio spot, it’s a win. It gets heard more often. It gets remembered more often. Radio listeners get weary of radio ads aimed only at their logic. When you add emotion and entertainment, that’s when the real results show themselves.

3.  Not taking your competition into account.  

If you create a radio campaign without “strategy” in mind, your ads won’t work as hard as they could for you. So, you have to think about how you compare with your competition. Where are they strong? Where are you strong, where they are not? We need to “open a wedge” where you stand above your competitors. We need to highlight the points where you shine. And those points need to be things that people really care about.

For example, I have a banking client who’s on a consistent yearly radio plan. They’re a smaller bank with multiple locations that 1) answers the phone when you call, 2) is small enough where the employees know who you are, and 3) cares more for the individual. Our strategy is to highlight the shortcomings of the big banks – like customer service and always having to wrestle with automated phone systems… and then explain why you’ll be happier at a smaller bank. We’re using humor and also reminding people of how it used to be and that they can have that level of service again. We’re also going to possibly incorporate some good testimonial ads into that mix of humorous ads very soon. At least, that’s my vision. Getting customer testimonials isn’t always easy.

If we just gave a laundry list of services and cliché lines about customer service and a knowledgeable staff, the ads would never get any attention. They would be ignored. And the radio advertising wouldn’t work.  No matter where you advertise, it’s ALL about the message and the strategy within your ads. And radio advertising is one of the best places to create messages that have a huge impact with listeners.  Why?  Because of the massive range of creative angles, “theatre of the mind”, the power of sound, and versatility.

4.  Getting too technical about demographics and the radio stations you choose.

Most radio stations would work for a good, local branding campaign. Yes, some might have a few more listeners that seem to be in your “wheelhouse” of the demographics you’re looking for… but barely. Don’t try splitting hairs.

Consider a demographic range for many radio stations… 18 to 35… 25 to 45… 35 to 60+. That’s a pretty big range. You know why? Because you can never tell what kind of music someone enjoys. Or whether they prefer Talk Radio over a station that plays music. And most people have 2 to 4 favorite radio stations. There’s not one radio station, TV station, newspaper, magazine, website, or social media channel that OWNS an audience. People are people. All you have to do is make sure you’re saying something in your ads that people might actually care about. THAT is when your advertising will start working. It’s not about WHERE you advertise. It’s about what you SAY in your ads. I don’t mean to be a broken record about that (well maybe I do), but it’s the most important thing that business owners and “marketing people” need to understand. Your advertising results depend on it.

Radio just happens to be one of the best mediums in order to place your well-crafted, entertaining, and engaging advertising message.  Why?  Because it’s a “friend”.  It’s a place we turn to for information and entertainment.  Every day.  And 90+% of people listen every single week.

YES… I could keep going with reasons to do radio wrong… these just happen to come up a lot in my many years of experience in the local advertising arena.

Duane Christensen

9 Yards Marketing

duane@9yards-marketing.com

You Are Not Special – Or Are You?

You’re thinking, “Damn right we’re special.  People love us!”

That’s awesome if you have customers who love you. You should work really hard to keep it that way!  But what about Non-Customers? Do they love you?  Nope.  They couldn’t care less.  Especially, if they barely know you exist. Especially, if they know nothing about you. Especially, if they are content doing business with your competition right now.

So, what’s the main goal in your advertising investment?

It’s to get RESULTS, right?  Sure.  But HOW do you get results?

Throw a bunch of money at different advertising packages and “deals”… and see what sticks!  Wha?  Nooooooo!  Don’t do that.  I want to help you get a phenomenal return on your advertising.  And that does NOT come by shooting from the hip…

Yosemite-Sam-Quotes-300x281

Looney Toons legend: Yosemite Sam

BOOM!  Die, Varmint!

You’ll be disappointed. And you’ll waste a lot of money.

Back to the question of the hour. HOW do you get advertising results?!!!!!

The answer is in the title.

You must prove to the public that you’re special. PROVE to them… that you’re SPECIAL. Easier said than done though, right?

You can’t just throw up all over people, saying that you’re special and that you’re the best, and you’re “quality”, and a bunch of other horseshit that YOU know is true… but that nobody else believes. They may believe you some day. But first you have to PROVE it to them that you’re special.

Proof.

It’s in the pudding.

Meaning, you need to help your customers “taste” what you have to offer that’s better than what they’re chewing on now. What’s so great about your competition? What’s the big deal that they’re talking about? Probably nothing. They’re most likely just holding up a sign and yelling about who, what, and where they are. That gives YOU an opportunity to POUNCE!

This is where the “strategy” part of your advertising plan comes in. (Want help with strategy? It’s my specialty.)

Take that SPECIAL thing about you in which your competition can’t claim or not talking about. Then, you shine a light on that special thing, so that when the public thinks about your product or service, they INSIST on getting that special thing that you offer. And when they think of it, you want them to think of YOU.

Good advertising is not something as simple as “branding”. Good advertising is making friends with your prospective customers. FRIENDS are much more likely to do business with you that someone who doesn’t know you. So, start your advertising with the idea that you’re trying to make a new friend. Think about that. It’s not branding. It’s more like bonding. It’s being helpful, vulnerable, sincere, and human. That’s what it is.

Take that “special thing” about your awesome local business and weave it throughout a story that you tell the public. The special thing about you is the LOGIC side of your advertising. And the “friendly” part of your advertising is all of the rest. It’s the STORY. It’s the humble and caring part of you. It’s the reason why you love what you do. It’s the passion.  OR… is all of that a great big PART of what makes you SPECIAL?  Hmmmm.  I’d say that you may be on to something!  : )

Need help writing that advertisement? That’s what I love to do. I love to sift through the good, bad, and what your future customer truly cares about (because it’s about them, right?)  And then, we come up with a strategy and radio advertising plan that has immense potential.  A plan that will put you at the forefront of people’s minds. Not because you’re spending the most, but because you’re saying the right things in your ads. You’re proving to people how you will be their superstar.

Then, pretty soon… you have a bunch of new FRIENDS, who think you are SPECIAL, and are ready to be YOUR CUSTOMER.  

And dang, that’s really cool when it all comes together. I have a healthy handful of clients in and around Sioux Falls who would love to tell you about their experience with me and Results Radio. I’d be happy to get you their contact info.

Let me know if you’d like to have a conversation about this sort of stuff.

Have a groovy day!

_MG_8555 252kb

 

Duane Christensen

Results Radio Townsquare Media

Sioux Falls, South Dakota

605-940-7984

duane.christensen@results-radio.com

 

 

Emotionally Engaging Advertising

How emotionally engaging was the last digital ad you saw?

Everything Apple, iMac, iPhone, iPad, Macbook And Apple Watch

Photo by Stokpic

Not very, right?

I’m not saying digital ads have no benefit… I’m just saying they don’t have much on their own.

A good radio campaign will engage your prospect emotionally.

First, let’s understand why emotion in advertising is king.  If we didn’t buy emotionally… every person would drive the ugliest, cheapest car that effectively got them from Point A to Point B.  We would all wear the same generic shirts, pants, and shoes.  We would never get excited about a new 60-inch TV, we would just say, “That’s overkill.  It’s unnecessary.”

But you know that’s not who we are.  Emotion is involved in almost every decision we make.

Back to emotion in advertising…

Doesn’t it make sense that we create ads that are emotionally engaging, then?  Of course it does.  Yes, a picture can create emotion… but what happens when a voice tells us a story and engages us in something that we can relate to?  What happens when you put the proper music to match the mood we’re trying to set?  Theater.  And that’s what good radio is… a theater of the mind.

Logic in ads can only go so far.  Emotion is what will take it farther than you thought was possible.  But what if you’re a pencil pushing, logical, type of business owner?  About half of you are.  Well, that just makes my job a little tougher is all.  I have to convince you that people are emotional beings and that you’re going to get more bang for your buck if you choose advertising options that can deliver an emotional and engaging message.

How easy is it to dismiss a digital ad?  Pretty easy.  That’s why you have to put even more work into digital ad “creative”.  And your digital ad should just be another memory anchor of your “sound” advertising.  You know… the emotional kind.  It should all work together.

Not satisfied with your digital advertising immediate results?  Stop trying to make people buy now.  Be yourself, be sincere, be emotional… and people will begin to remember you and eventually love you and do business with you.  You can’t force success.  It’s earned.  It’s for sure not a magical “digital” formula.

Whenever you’re asked to buy any kind of online or offline advertising, just ask yourself:  Is it emotionally engaging?

Duane Christensen

Results Radio Townsquare Media – Sioux Falls, SD

P.S.  I actually sell and create digital ads and campaigns (not just radio).  But I’ve never sold them by themselves without an emotionally engaging radio advertising strategy to be the primary driver of the complete marketing campaign.

Sioux Falls Marketing

You have tons of Sioux Falls marketing options.

Marketing Sioux Falls

Image courtesy of “Stuart Miles” / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Marketing options in Sioux Falls can make your head spin.  It’s daunting.  But let’s define marketing in regards to trying to attract more customers or increase sales.  Marketing… is anything you do inside or outside your business in an attempt to make a buck.  That could mean flyers on windshields, sandwich boards, signage in your store, improving your online presence, advertising on the radio, joining a networking group, etc.

Advertising is something you pay for where you’re “renting” an audience.  Radio has an audience.  TV has an audience.  Billboards have an audience (kind of – people don’t “choose” to use billboards – they’re just kind of in the way).  The Internet has an audience.  Advertising is a part of your marketing.

Back to marketing in Sioux Falls.  Consider your competition in town.  Are you one among many?  Or are you light on competitors?  That will be a big factor in how intensely you need to market or how much you need to invest in your marketing.

The biggest problem I see is that there are “marketing people” and “marketing firms” who don’t have a lot of experience in helping people improve their overall marketing efforts.  They just have their own toolbox to sell which may or may not be a bit of good for anyone.  They’ve just been told by their bosses to go sell their services.  Then, the creative people will create some fancy graphics.  Or the production department will put together some ads.

Do you see the problem?  There is a huge gap in there that needs to be filled with thinking, communication, research, and then finally a smart marketing STRATEGY for the business.  Because without that…you’re not doing the most you can with your marketing budget.  You might be throwing a lot of dollars in the dumpster, so to speak.

Marketing in Sioux Falls can be fun!

I’m serious!  Once we put a great plan together for you…and hammer out a good strategy for you and a first set of ads for the first few months…then, all we have to do is keep our ear to the ground.  You’ll start seeing new faces, consistently.  You’ll talk to more people.  Then, I just keep writing more ads and tweaking the overall strategy.  After a year, you could be truly amazed at how your business has changed.

Part of the fun will be that you will NOT have to constantly worry about where your next customer will come from.  I’ll be on the side working for you.  I’ll be doing my own research for you.  You’ll have a new radio ad at least once a month.  And that’s important because if you run the same ad more than that…the effectiveness of that ad drops off sharply.  You have a lot to tell the public.  So, we’ll keep your ads fresh, persuasive, and entertaining.

I like to help businesses see the bigger picture.  Marketing in Sioux Falls is not about trying this and trying that.  It’s about figuring out the best way to position yourself among your competitors.  Marketing is a process.  It’s not an inconsistent series of events that may or may not work.  Sioux Falls is still a nice size where word can travel pretty fast.  We can help you become a household name in town.  If you’re interested in talking, just give me a shout.

Not only Sioux Falls – you’ll also be marketing to the surrounding rural area.

This isn’t like a direct mail campaign to a few Sioux Falls zip codes.  You’ll be reaching an entire area.  Not just portions.  You won’t have to hope and pray that your direct marketing is getting to the exact people who need your service at this precise moment.  You’ll be getting your business name and what you stand for into the brains of the public, and we’ll make sure the ads are sticky enough so they remember you.  This is mass media.  You’ll be reaching a ton of people.  And here’s why that’s GOOD and why you do NOT have to “target” so narrowly with your advertising…

Everyone is an “influencer” in some way.  Even if your exact perfect potential customer doesn’t hear your ad… how many people are in that person’s “circle”?  People talk.  People chat about anything and everything.  And if we feel we can help a friend or family member out by mentioning a business we heard about…we will.  Decisions aren’t made in a vacuum.  If a husband doesn’t hear the plumbing ad…the wife still could have.  And the wife is sleeping with the husband.  They talk.  So, when there’s a plumbing issue, guess what happens?  They talk about who to contact.

When I said you don’t have to target so narrowly…that’s not entirely true.  We’ll target the right people (profitable potential new customers) with the message we communicate in your ads.  We target through the message…not exclusively through the avenue in which you advertise. Which is much more effective.

Advertising isn’t like a vending machine.  You can’t just put in money and automatically get something in return.  We need to actually sit down and think about this for a moment before you pull the trigger with your checkbook.  I won’t let you advertise with me until we know we’ve created something with the potential to do great things.

I’ll produce a campaign for you that will make a difference.  And if I don’t think that’s possible…I’ll tell you.

When we start working together, I’ll make your Sioux Falls marketing not seem so confusing and help you wade through your endless marketing and advertising options.  I’m not saying radio is the best of the best when it comes to local advertising.  But I am saying that I’ve learned quite a lot in the past many years I’ve been doing this, and I’ve seen my clients grow consistently year after year.  I know that radio advertising can make great things happen.  I know businesses who are “famous” in Sioux Falls and they put 85 to 90% of their marketing budget into radio at Results Radio.  We do it different here.  I do it different.  I care about your results.  I care that what we’re doing with your investment is giving you a return that will cause you to LOVE your radio advertising.

I’ll stop now.  I get a little passionate about this stuff.  : )

Have a great day!

Duane Christensen

(Chief paper clip organizer at Results Radio Townsquare Media)

Sioux Falls Radio Advertising blog

P.S. Let me know if you’d like to sit down and discuss your options. I’m not the “salesy” type. Just the “nice, helpful guy” type. Marketing in Sioux Falls doesn’t have to be so scary, confusing, frustrating, etc.