Record Month!

Radio Advertising Success

No… not me.

Even better… it’s one of my clients who had a record month!

And the best part, they give credit to the Radio advertising they do with me.

But it wasn’t that way in the beginning.  I remember weekly conversations.  One week radio rocks.  The next week it sucks donkey.  Cancel.  No, double my schedule.

And all through their growing pains, I kept preaching, “This is going to take a little time. You’re on the right track, but be patient.  You’re in a long-term purchase cycle industry.  We just have to keep saying it better than your competitors do.  You’ll start earning trust with more and more people in time.  We need to let your strategy sink into people’s brains. Patience, grasshopper.  Give this ball a chance to start gaining momentum.”

This client also isn’t afraid to put a few dollars out there.  They had to.  They have a massive amount of competition in Sioux Falls.

Uff Da.  There were a lot of times it was stressful and frustrating for me.  They would threaten to cancel or reduce their radio schedules every other week.  But I had faith.  Faith in our radio stations and faith in the strategy and ads that we were sharing with a whole bunch of people every single day.  I knew it was just a matter of time until there was a tipping point.

So, how does this happen?  What kind of ads work?  Why radio?  How much should someone spend on advertising?

The owner was courageous.  He wanted to “say it different” in the ads.  He wanted to be bold and shock people a little bit.  Those are the best kinds of business owners when it comes to creating a radio campaign.  Too many want to “water down” their message and make sure it doesn’t offend anyone and make it sound just like every other ad.

The radio ads were sincere.  The owner voiced most of the ads.  Or parts of them.  The ads had headlines that make people stop what they’re doing… and listen.  This was retail, and we knew their business had a better product to offer consumers.  All we had to do was gain their trust.  But it took time because the industry was full of big national brands pushing their fluff all over every media outlet… for decades.

My client started focusing ad dollars where they knew it was making an impact.  Radio was at the top of the list.  So, now, instead of spreading marketing dollars across dozens of media choices, they put their dollars into what they knew was working.  And then, they weren’t overspending either.  Now, they just needed to be patient and let their ad message start sinking into more people’s brains.

The ads never say anything like, “for all your ________ needs.”  They never say anything cliché that goes in one ear and out the other.  Each line in their ads has the power to make people reconsider where they were going to make their next purchase.  There is no wasted ad time.  No fluff or filler, just to make sure the ad timed out correctly.  Stories were told, testimonials were included intermittently, and the same overall strategy was kept throughout the campaign.  And guess what… there’s no phone number or website address given in the ads.  Ever.

Because of deep competition, my client needed to have enough “share of voice” in the market.  Meaning, they had to have enough ads on each radio station, so they weren’t drowned out by their competition.  They couldn’t just trickle a few ads here and there to the radio audiences.  They needed to start “owning” mindshare.  And they needed to be in people’s ears frequently and consistently.

A 52-weeks per year radio schedule was crucial to making this record month come to fruition.  We needed enough radio ads getting attention and making a positive impact with people each and every week.  And we needed to keep the radio ads fresh.  The longest any ad has ever aired was 3 weeks.  Sometimes, an ad would run for a week and we’d get a better idea and freshen it up.  Sometimes an ad would be so impactful, we knew it wouldn’t have to run as long or would “burn out” with people fast.  If we let it run longer, it would start annoying listeners.  So, we switch it out with a different ad that came at listeners from a different angle of some sort.  We had to keep telling their story in different ways because not everyone responds the same way to every ad.

This is highly competitive retail.  So, the ad spend was upwards of 20% of revenues when they were spending the most.  But once they “dialed in” that Radio was the best generator of new customers, they scaled back spending to between 10 and 12% of revenues.

They have a lot of market share to continue to gain, so, I’m predicting many more record months coming for them over the next couple of years.  It’s going to be exciting to watch it all unfold.

If you want your advertising to make an impact, you have to be passionate about it.  You can’t just throw some dollars to the media wind, and hope something sticks.  You need to be active in your marketing efforts.  I know you wish you could just insert your ad dollars into a vending machine and automatically get a decent return on that investment.  Sorry, it doesn’t work that way.  And if you think it should… you’ll have a really frustrating and unfruitful journey in regards to trying to attract new customers.

If you’d like to discuss how this works in further detail, just give me a shout.  I love helping good, local businesses who love their customers!

Thank you.

Duane Christensen

Results Radio | Townsquare Media – Sioux Falls

duane.christensen@results-radio.com

605-940-7984

Radio Sales

 

 

A System For Sales

“They” say you should have a system for selling.  “They” meaning experts, I guess.  But here’s what I’ve learned through my selling career.  You have to find your own system that works for YOU.  Something canned or scripted out the same way every time… is a bunch of baloney.  (yes, baloney, not bologna)

I don’t usually do huge, elaborate proposals.  I talk to people and get them to trust me.  That’s my thing.  That’s what I’ve figured out works for me.  My personality, transparency, and “regular guyness” shines through.  After a few encounters, and sometimes after the first face to face meeting.  People trust me.  That’s the #1 hurdle.  Earning trust.

The other day, after just one meeting with a new prospect, I called and discussed some things over the phone with her.  I wasn’t proposing anything, I just ran through some rough options and explained why they could be good for her.  She said, “Let’s go with whatever you think is best. I trust ya.”  That doesn’t happen because I flooded her with research, industry articles, graphs, or fluff.  I learned as much as I could about her business, then I put myself into her customers’ shoes, and went from there.

But I’m only able to gain trust with people through simple conversation because I know my craft.  I know what it takes to make advertising work… and how to go about it.  There’s never a “push”… just good questions… and better listening.

Hey… some salespeople need to have a presentation all mapped out and rehearsed over and over.  That’s great!  That’s probably what works best for most people.  But not for me.  I’ve learned that from my sales experience through the past 15 years.  I found what works for ME.  And you need to do the same.

Maybe if you’re new at “this sales thing”… you have to try a few different approaches.  Of course you do.  You’re going to need to work your ass off for starters.  You’re going to have to put extra time in for the first couple of years, especially.  But you’ll learn a lot of things through that.  You’ll learn what feels comfortable for you… and what works.  That’s my point.  Whatever works for YOU.  There are managers out there who think you should do it just like they do.  I don’t agree.  At all.

Sales is a about trust.  If you know your stuff, know how to deliver results, and can help people feel comfortable, you’re most of the way there.

Could I initially get a bigger order from new clients?  Possibly.  But once my clients understand the value of what they’re getting from me (great radio advertising that causes consumers to give them a shot), then they eventually spend more with me down the road.  Causing that trust to deepen even more because I didn’t push them too hard right off the bat.  Again, some people would disagree, but I have some pretty loyal radio clients who love what I do for them, and have been with me for over a decade.

I do what’s right.  And I never sell something that’s not needed.  I care for my clients and for their bottom line.  When they realize that… then, the sales process is easy.

BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY… Have a groovy day!

Duane Christensen

Radio sales guy / ad writer / “marketing strategist” at Results Radio Townsquare Media in Sioux Falls.

duane.christensen@results-radio.com

605-940-7984

Radio Sales

Slow Down And Do It Right

 

When you decide to advertise… you want to see something happen FAST!

But I’m here to tell you to “Calm down, bro.”  When you “do advertising” the right way, your results will come slower than you want them to. And then in 12 months, you’ll be thinking, “Holy crap! This is pretty dang awesome!”

Since, I’m an amateur farmer who helps his old man out with the crops every Spring and Fall… let me put it to you in terms of farming. When you start advertising on the radio, your ad message is a seed.

You can have low-grade seeds that will yield very little, skip the fertilizer, ignore the weeds, and you won’t make any money. Especially, if you’re in a hurry and want to harvest after only having your seed in the ground for 3 weeks.  This is representative of not putting the right effort into your advertising messages and not giving your advertising plan enough time to mature in the minds of consumers.

The alternative is to have a high-yield potential seed, prepare your soil with the right nutrients, make sure the weeds stay away, and then harvest after the seed has grown and matured.  This is representative of a radio campaign that is developed properly. One that cares about the message that is created and one that allows enough time for those ad messages to really sink in to consumers’ minds.

The best things in life come with time.  Just like a good harvest.

Each radio ad is a seed that’s getting planted in a mind. Will someone drop what they’re doing and buy from you the first time they hear your ad?  Of course not.  But what if you keep saying really great things that they care about? Consistently. Again and again. What if you start getting people to trust you because of the stories, helpful information, and entertainment you keep sharing in your radio ads? Over and over. Consistently. Over time.  Hmmmm?

Those seeds begin to take root and grow.  Those ads start to do their job. They’re sinking in.  They’re sticking in brains.  Then what?

Then, over time… as radio listeners live their lives… they’ll eventually need what you sell. And who do you think they’ll think of when they need the product or service you sell? Who do you think that they’ll feel best about? Who do you feel they will have the most confidence in ? ? ? ? ?

YOU.  Your business.  Your people.  They’ve come to trust you before they’ve even met you because you were being patient with them. You were educating them slowly and effectively about why they should do business with you instead of someone else. But you didn’t ever “hard sell” them.  You went through the process of making friends with them through your radio ads that did NOT sound like typical radio ads.

Your seeds were the good ones.  And you watered and fertilized.  And nurtured those seeds.  You had patience.  You slowed down, gave your advertising campaign some real thought before you started it, then you let it go to work.  Nature ran its course and gave you a harvest that you never thought possible.

Slow down… and do advertising right.  It takes a lot of thought and planning at the beginning.  When you set a marketing budget… and focus that budget on a big group of people (a couple radio stations is a great start!), then that big group of people will start to be won over by your sincere advertising messages.

Warning: Don’t scatter your seeds to the wind.  Don’t glitter-blast them into the atmosphere and hope that the marketing gods catch them and turn them into Thousand-Dollar Bills.  That’s the “spray and pray” method.  It doesn’t work.  If you want the full-blown explanation of WHY that doesn’t work, give me a call.

RADIO is one of the most fertile soils you can find to plant your seeds. The power of sound is amazing when it comes to branding.  We can recite the lyrics to songs we never intended to remember.  We can remember tons of details when those details are wSioux Falls Radio Advertising guy - Duane Christensen - Results Radio Townsquare Mediarapped into a good story.

Sound.  Radio.  Good soil.

Are you ready to plant some seeds for one heck of a nice harvest, year after year?

Let’s talk about that.

Duane Christensen

Results Radio Townsquare Media – Sioux Falls

605-940-7984

duane.christensen@results-radio.com

SiouxFallsRadioAdvertising.com

 

Diversification is for your Financial Portfolio… not your Advertising… kind of… 😃

radio advertising sioux falls

Image by Stuart Miles via FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Have you ever been told that you should diversify your advertising investments? You know… spread your marketing all around to as many places as possible… so you can “reach” the most people?

Don’t get me wrong, I can understand the logic.  But when you stop to truly think about how to make advertising work really well… it’s not logical at all.

Let me explain. Good advertising RESULTS do not come from merely “touching” or “reaching” people with a logo or an advertising message.  Advertising results come from engaging people with your ads. Engaging, entertaining, informing, and persuading. 

But how many people do you think would switch from doing business with one of your competitors and become your loyal customer with only ONE ADVERTISING IMPRESSION? Based on research and my experience, I’m guessing it’s a fraction of a percentage, and that’s being really optimistic.

Have you heard those businesses who advertise on the radio? The ones you hear a few times each week, every month, and every year? They’ve made it impossible for you to ignore them. When you need what they sell… they’ve made it to the top 1, 2, or 3 businesses in your HEAD that you have to either say “yes” or “no” to.  Because of their consistent radio advertising and an unmistakable ad strategy, THEY’VE LAID CLAIM TO A SPOT IN YOUR BRAIN.  It doesn’t mean you WILL buy from them, it just means that you can’t ignore them. They’re one of the top options you’ll consider when you want to buy what they sell.

So, if you’re not one of those advertisers… you’re going to be farther down that list of options to go to… if you’re on that list at all.  If you get onto that short list of businesses who people think of when they need what you sell, it will affect your business growth incredibly.

Radio “reaches” about 93% of adults each week.  So, tell me why you’d want to spread your marketing dollars – no, let me rephrase that – why would you want to SPRINKLE your marketing dollars around here and there and over there… barely making any impact at all in the mediums where you place your ads?

In order to become one of the top choices that people think about when they need your product or service (i.e. branding), you must be consistent with your advertising on the ad mediums you choose. Why?  Because if you’re not consistent, and if you’re not trying to brand your name in the heads of consumers, then you’re only talking to the very small fraction of a percent of people who need you right now.  That means about 99% or more of your marketing dollars are then wasted.  

Wouldn’t you rather advertise to the other 99% of the people who don’t need you now, but may need you in 2, 6, or 12 months?  That’s a huge group of people who you could be engaging, educating, entertaining, and persuading. Over time, who do you think people would want to do business with… the business they know NOTHING about… or YOU – the one who has been consistently whispering in their ear about how YOU can help them?

Side note:  And I’m sorry to say… digital / online advertising won’t make that happen. Not on their own. If you put a small portion of your budget into some online display advertising of some kind, that’s ok, as long as you have enough coverage with your radio plan. Then, your online ads can kind of be a support team to your radio ads. People who see your online ads AFTER they’ve heard your radio ads, will be moved much closer to doing business with you, rather than just seeing an online ad. Click rates are pretty dang low. 

It’s the same thing with being found on the first page of Google in a search query. For example, if I don’t have a “go-to” plumber… and I see 5 or 6 plumbing businesses on the first page of Google… I’m going to first call the one that I feel like I know and trust because of the storytelling or interesting information they’ve shared via their advertising.  Whether they were the FIRST in a Google search or not.  Doesn’t matter to me.  I go with the one I feel most comfortable with.

We’re talking about Branding here… not Awareness.  I’m “aware” of a lot of local businesses, but I don’t know anything about many of them. But the ones who tell me their story and how they can best help ME when I need their product or service… they’re the ones I will consider first. Every time.  

Are you ready to be a household name in the Sioux Falls area? That’s what I’m here to help you do. But just beware… it’s not just about consistency with your advertising… your ads have to engage, entertain, inform, and persuade. And there are not many marketing people who understand how to do that. I do. We do.  

Results Radio devotes much of its training for us to the “writing better ads / creating smart strategies / being remembered” side of things. You won’t find that in many other places around the country. We asked the question, “How can we make our clients’ advertising WORK?” And then, we figured out how to make that happen.

Let me know if you’d like to discuss a marketing plan… and I’ll help you figure out what that plan might look like.  It’s what I do.  

Thanks! Have a groovy day!

Duane Christensen

Results Radio Townsquare Media – Sioux Falls

duane.christensen@results-radio.com

605-940-7984

Wave After Wave

radio advertising sioux falls

Do you know why it’s important to be consistent with your radio advertising?

Because not everyone is ready to buy what you sell at the exact moment you’re running your ads.

Consumers evolve into the “ready to buy” phase whenever their own stars align. You can’t predict it. Especially if you don’t sell something that’s seasonal.

So… all of those people become ready to buy, basically, at random. WAVE after WAVE. Which is exactly why you need to be consistent with your advertising. Your potential new customers shift into buying mode like the endless crashing of the waves on the beach.

But before that “wave” hits shore, it’s rolling along in preparation.

People go through different shopping phases, possibly for months and even years, before they make a final decision to buy. If it’s something other than food or gas.  This is exactly why consistently whispering your story into their ears on the radio during all those pre-purchase thought phases, research phases, etc., is such a great marketing tactic.

It’s a marketing tactic that is making a lot of our clients here at Results Radio grateful for being taught how to make local marketing and advertising actually work. Of course, there are some ultra-secret elements to getting results for our radio customers. Just kidding. I’ll tell you if you ask. There are about 2 other keys to making your advertising work like gangbusters (along with some other variables within your own business).

Here’s a rough formula for you…

Consistent Radio Ad Schedule + Strategic Advertising Copy / Creative =

ADVERTISING RESULTS

When you’re ready to stop shooting from the hip with your local marketing efforts, let me know. I’d love to sit down and discuss your options with you.

But remember something Chuck McKay said in Fishing For Customers and Reeling Them In

“Marketing is not an event, it’s a process.”  And that process, I believe, has a lot to do with the unpredictability of when people buy things. WAVE AFTER WAVE, people become ready to buy. Tell your story consistently… and I guarantee, you’ll be catching more waves than most of your competition.

Duane Christensen

Results Radio / Townsquare Media

Sioux Falls, SD

Local Marketing, Radio Advertising, Digital Advertising, and Coffee Drinking

Take Your Old Advertising Ways To Slaughter

Still advertising the old way?

Hog Trailer

You’ve advertised for years and years, maybe decades… and you’re still not happy with your advertising and marketing results.  Then, the “new guy” (in the form of online advertising), steps onto the playing field, and you’re like, “Finally! Advertising that I can track!”   But lo and behold, you found out THAT was a crock of malarkey, too.

No matter WHERE you have advertised and no matter who has been in charge of it… it’s always failed, right?

The old way: advertising that looks, sounds, and wreaks like every other advertisement out there.

There are a few different kinds of “old way” advertising.  One example is just cramming a bunch of bullet points about your business into a radio ad (or any kind of ad for that matter) and then “picking the right station” to be on.  Doesn’t work, right?

Note to self: Stop doing it that way. Take that method of advertising to slaughter. Kill it. Be done with it. Aren’t you fed up?

Another example of “the old way” of advertising “CREATIVE”. That’s when it’s humor or special effects or any other kind of creativeness shoved down our throats in an ad… but there’s really no tie from that creativeness to your business.  No relevance. And that means people might remember the “funny stuff”, but they don’t remember YOU. We’re flooded with “creative” ads that don’t work any better than the first example I gave.

Note to self: Stop doing this, too. Slaughter the “old way” of what you think advertising should look or sound like.

I built my wife a website a few years back. She’s a Realtor. I added a page on the website called “4th Dream Home Story”. She has received comments from a few new clients about that exact page of the website. They think it’s cool.  My wife said, “When people read that, it’s like it allows them to trust me a little bit before they’ve even met me.”  I said, EXACTLY!

That’s the power of telling a story. Of sharing a personal story. They won’t remember all the other “stuff” on the website, but they’ll remember that. Plus, it ties into real estate – even better.

So, try to remember how it is that you form really tight relationships with people. Is it by spewing a bunch of facts and boring figures to your friends? No. You tell stories. You’re emotional. And that’s how you win over new customers, too. You make friends with them by creating ads that show you’re human. You bond with them through your ads. You want them to relate to what you’re saying. Be vulnerable. Shit, tell them about a bad divorce, or a influential parent, or the time you were stuck in an elevator with the Beach Boys.

Entertain them. Don’t sell them. “Selling” is for short-term goals that are short-lived. Building relationships within an audience is how you’ll win over the vast majority of them. Tell them something in your ads that will make them think, “Hmm, seems like a nice person.”

You’re afraid to be the spokesperson for your company? You need to get over that. Be the passionate business person you are… and win over a bunch of people by being YOU. And if you can’t read a script to save your life, I understand. Then, let’s sit down and just talk. I’ll record your raw passion for the business, your stories, and more. And it will turn into a radio ad that will be better than anything that was ever scripted.

Take the ineffective old ways of advertising (what you “think” advertising should look and sound like) and leave them by the side of the road and hit the gas. You don’t owe them anything.

Duane Christensen – Local Marketing Guy

Results Radio Townsquare Media – Sioux Falls, South Dakota

605-940-7984       duane.christensen@results-radio.com

Duane - Helmet 2016

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.

Help Wanted Advertising Results Radio Sioux Falls

Hiring in Sioux Falls? It’s a New Ballgame.

Help Wanted Advertising Results Radio Sioux Falls

I bet you thought that said McDonald’s.

The couple of items that have employers really frustrated lately are…

  1. Hiring
  2. and then keeping the good people they hire

Some industries seem to just keep trading employees back and forth.  The person sees a yummy carrot that an employer dangles out (like a signing bonus)… takes the job… does the time to get the bonus… and then looks for the next carrot.  That’s frustrating as an employer.

If you’d like to hire good people, you have to tell your potential applicants something they’d like to hear.  Don’t tell them something that every other company is blabbing about.  Make them feel good about what you stand for as a company, and then dangle a carrot.  I can help with figuring out what kind of carrot to dangle and how to present that carrot.  It’s not about saying “We’re hiring and we have benefits and competitive wages!”  Nope.  Let’s discuss what should be communicated to your desired group of potential future employees.

If you’d like to KEEP your good people, I have 2 sure-fire ways to do that.

  1. Create a Rewards program for your employees.  Something totally custom, not copied from someone else you’ve heard about.  Make it your own.  And don’t be stingy – make it good.
  2. Profit-sharing.  There are a few businesses around who have profit-sharing plans.  Some are good plans, some aren’t that good.  But it’s a start.

I remember back in 6th Grade, I won some “entrepreneurial contest” among classmates.  I decided to start a fake auto dealership.  I immediately hired two cute female classmates as extra salespeople – and I gave them a VERY HEALTHY COMMISSION.  I think it was like 33% of each sale, and even a small portion of the total company’s sales.  But I made them invest a little bit at the beginning in order to be a part of my team (which helped out my cash flow).  I ended up earning the most money, and winning the fake Million-dollar check.  Take from that what you wish… or just chalk it up as just a cute little story.

There’s  not a secret formula to keeping good help.  But you for sure have to treat your employees well, give them some nice praise when it’s deserved, and have a good incentives program.

The fight for good employees in Sioux Falls is fierce.  You can’t keep doing things the way you’ve always done them.  If you’re in this for the long haul, it’s time to re-evaluate your ideas about hiring and keeping those recruits.

Are you sensitive to your employees’ feelings?  Are you able to put yourself in someone else’s shoes and see what it’s like for them?  I’m not saying you should be a wussy boss.  I’m just saying that showing some compassion and understanding goes farther than you can imagine.

You may wrinkle your face at some of this… but I’m not backing down from my beliefs on creating an untouchable (or close to it) work force.  Have a great day!

Duane Christensen

Sioux Falls Radio Advertising blog

duane.christensen@results-radio.com

605-940-7984

I’m a radio sales / account executive / ad writer / marketing strategist at Results Duane work pic Nov2015Radio / Townsquare Media in Sioux Falls.  I’ve been with the company since 1998.  I love to help good, local businesses attract profitable customers, so they can make a healthy profit.  

This is my own personal radio advertising blog.

Radio Advertising in Sioux Falls

New Discovery! Thinner, Sexier, Smarter in just 40 Days. Naturally!

Radio Advertising in Sioux Falls

Image courtesy of “stockimages” / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Did I make you look?  Did I make you wonder, “What the schnizzit?”

Your radio ad needs a good headline.  If you don’t give it one…nobody will hear the rest of the ad.  But to the novice radio ad copy writer, or to the advertiser, you want to start your radio ad like this…

“ABC Horseshoeing has been in business since 1870.  They can handle all of your horseshoeing needs…”

I’m not saying the title of my blog post is a great headline, but it’s to make a point.  The headline is about YOU.  It’s telling YOU how YOU could possibly benefit.  It’s not about a company or a product.

Because you don’t know any better, you’ll feel like you have to put your business name up front and center.  After all… you’re paying for the advertising… why wouldn’t you put your business name right at the beginning and then another 19 times throughout the ad!  But wait.  Stop.  Don’t do it.  Why?

What does a radio listener (or any consumer for that matter) truly care about?  Do they care about you, the business owner?  Do they care that you want to make more money?  Ummm, no.  They couldn’t care less.  They have other shit to worry about.  They have a life.  And they’re trying to get ahead.  They’re worried about surviving and thriving.  They’re definitely not worried about you and your business.

Not to be harsh… but it’s the truth.  And by understanding the TRUTH and understanding a little bit about why people do the things they do, you’ll be able to start advertising to your prospects in a much more effective manner.

So, start your radio ad headline with a statement or a question that engages the radio listener.  Say something about THEM.  Say something that doesn’t automatically alert their brain to the fact that they’re listening to a radio ad.  You should be informing people about things they didn’t know about.  Teach them something.  Make them go, “Hmmm, I didn’t know that.”  Now, you’re setting yourself up as a potential “expert” in their minds.

You should also be entertaining a radio listener.  They’re listening to the radio for entertainment.  So, if you want to keep them engaged, then you better add some drama, humor, fun, etc. into your radio commercial.  Another great way to entertain is by storytelling.  We all love stories.  As long as it’s actually interesting and it doesn’t feel like you’re force-feeding us a story.  It needs to be relevant.

Whatever your headline, story, or humor in your radio ad… it better be guiding a listener all the way through the ad to a defining “aha” moment at the end.  Which is where the advertiser finally becomes the star or the hero.  You’re a problem solver.  So, bring up a problem… and then be the solution.  A better solution than your competition.

Another great way to critique your radio ad is to ask “So what?” to yourself after every line you read.  Is it a valuable phrase?  Or is it a cliché piece of garbage that will give the radio listener’s brain permission to stop listening to the ad you’re paying for?

Before you even consider mentioning your business name in your radio ad… you need to provide VALUE first.  To make your radio advertising more effective, you must prove to the listener that they could possibly benefit by listening to your ad.  Or entertain them while you weave your way unpredictably towards the defining “hero” moment where YOUR BUSINESS is the one who can either improve someone’s life or solve a problem for them.

To improve your lackluster advertising:

It’s NOT about who can shout the loudest.  

It’s the opposite.

It’s who can SEDUCE and PERSUADE… the deepest.  

And that all starts with a headline that is NOT about the advertiser.

Have a great day!

Duane Christensen

SIOUX FALLS RADIO ADVERTISING blog

How To Be Overcharged For Web Services

advertising marketing sioux falls

Image courtesy of “debspoons” / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Now… I’m not exactly sure this local company is being overcharged by one of my favorite local advertising agencies… I’m only 97.5% sure of it.

Here’s something I read on this particular advertising agency’s website. Their words are in bold in the paragraphs below.  My breakdown of their words is in RED)


 

[______________ company] partnered with us to increase their profits. (Because this agency used the words “partnered with us”, I would automatically NOT want them as my ad agency. They also said “profits”. It bugs me. I’m pretty sure the company didn’t call up this agency and say, “We’d like to partner with you to increase our profits.” Sure, maybe I’m being nit-picky, but it just bugs me, ok?!  We developed a website for them on an easy to use content management system, and we drive traffic to their website through Search Engine Optimization and Search Engine Marketing. [____________ company] is now ranking number one on the popular search engines!  (This agency is hoping business prospects reading this are not “with it” in the “Interwebs” language – because which keywords is this company ranking #1 for? Even I can build a website and get any local company to rank #1 pretty fast and easy for an obscure enough keyword. Bottom line – just be honest with us, please. And I searched the top 6 or 7 keywords and different variations of those keywords that most people would type into Google – this business was not even close to ranking #1.)

We also support their social media efforts, keeping top of mind awareness with their followers. (First of all, this company is not in an industry where people are breaking down doors to Like their Facebook and Twitter pages – aside from their wives and mothers. But this agency I’m sure told them they needed a consistent social media presence. And that they’re really good with social media, and they’d be more than happy to handle it for them. Of course, charging them a stupid amount of money for absolutely zero value in return.) We track their incoming traffic, so [_____________ company] can see exactly what their marketing dollars are providing for a return on their investment.  (So, technically, yes, if you add to someone’s website traffic, that’s a “return” on investment. But this industry that I’m naming unnamed, is one where there’s not a ton of competition. And the competition they do have…don’t have a lot of web marketing going on at all. So, getting more traffic to the website, and showing them the numbers is great. But it wasn’t difficult for them to do, yet they’re charging a pretty penny for it. They’re slick. And I’m not a fan of “slick” advertising agencies and marketing people.) 


Isn’t that almost PSYCHOTIC that I looked into those two small paragraphs so deeply? I know. Dude, get a life. I needed a break- and had half an hour to spare, ok? And I don’t like it when small business owners get taken advantage of.

ANYWAY… 

  • Please be careful before you buy any kind of marketing service or advertising.
  • Ask TWICE as many QUESTIONS as you think you should.
  • Sleep on it. Then, ask more questions.
  • Keep your “radar” up for buzzwords that mean nothing.
  • Keep your “radar” up for sales-ey type of talk. Look for sincerity.

Gotta run.  Have a great day!

 

Duane Christensen

Your favorite marketing dude at Results Radio Townsquare Media

Sioux Falls, SD

605-940-7984

duane.christensen@results-radio.com