by Tash Hughes
of Word Constructions (www.wordconstructions.com)
You want to grow
your business and have been advertising to let more
people know about your products or services. Thatís
great, but you want your advertising to be as effective
as possible to maximise the impact of your advertising
How do you
know which advertising programs you try are working the
For each ad that
you try, make sure that you track it so you can
assess itís effectiveness for your business. Donít rely
on your friendsí results as different businesses and
different locations require different advertising
Ďword of mouthí, networking, location (for a shop) and
search engine will always be available to you, so donít
forget to track these as well. These are all areas that
can be worked on and improved as well, but letís just
concentrate on ads for now.
ads, you need to record how many people come to you
through that ad, how many actually spend money with
you and how many have become repeat customers (if
Having run an ad
and collecting the data, how can you tell which ad to
It is important
to note that an ad usually needs to be run in the same
publication more than once for significant results.
Ideally, test your ad for at least 3, but preferably 6,
editions of the media. People are more likely to use a
business if they have heard of it a few times than on
the first contact, so give them that security.
Set up a
chart that lists all the
advertising you have done. Beside each option, record
the number of prospects, the number of sales, the number
of exposures (how many times you ran the ad) and the
cost of the advertising.
It could be easy
to assume the ad bringing in the most number of people
is the ad to repeat, but this may not be so.
Letís use an
Mary placed two
ads in two different magazines at the same cost. Ad A
brought 500 people to her shop and they spent a total of
$1,000. Ad B brought 300 people to her shop and they
spent a total of $1,800.
wants more people in her shop willing to spend money so
she should repeat ad B over ad A.
Consider if Ad A
had cost Mary only $100 and Ad B had cost had $1,000 for
the same number of editions.
Thus, ad A made
Mary a profit of $900 ($1,000 in sales less the $100 ad)
and ad B made her a profit of $800. Now, Mary may
consider than Ad A is more cost effective for her and
will run that one again.
There is more
to advertising than choosing where to place ads,
Ad A was cost
effective for Mary but it didnít bring in a lot of
customers ready to spend a lot of money. If she changed
the ad, maybe she could attract more sales through the
ad, making it even more cost effective for her.
that the heading was a bit boring and that she could
improve the special offer in the ad. If she does both of
these and sales increase to $1,500 (compared to $1,000
last time) Mary doesnít know if it was the heading or
the offer that worked.
A better option
would be to re run the ad with only the heading changed
and see what happens. After perhaps 4 editions, she
could then try it with the new offer and old heading and
watch the results.
headings and copy for ads, change only one thing at a
time for realistic results.
Once Mary sees
which ad is most effective, she can re use it and
possibly place it in other magazines to see if that
boosts her sales as well.
placing ads that the results can be different when you
change media. For instance the ad that works really well
in a business magazine may need to be reworded to be
successful in an accounting journal.
It isnít hard to
assess which ads do and donít work for your business, as
long as you keep track of where your customers are
coming from. Look at all the factors and use your
advertising budget wisely.
Tash Hughes is
the owner of
Word Constructions and is available to solve all
your business writing problems! From letters to
policies, newsletters to web content, Word Constructions
writes all business documents to your style and