By Ryan Ghidoni
Thursday September 22nd, 2016
Audio Active Advertising – Episode 18:
The Secret to LONG TERM Radio Advertising
The most powerful advertising techniques can be found in universal truths. I want to talk about one today that I have never seen fail in 18 years.
If you want to achieve anything, you’re more likely to succeed if you break it down into smaller attainable steps.
It applies to everything:
If your career goal is to be “the big boss” one day, you’re more likely to achieve it if you map out the various steps you need to eventually get there. They may include additional education, assuming new responsibilities, and seeking out new employment opportunities.
If your personal goal is to do some spring cleaning, you’re more likely to achieve it if you break it into smaller tasks. They may include cleaning out the garage, stripping and waxing the hardwoods, and sorting the closets.
The goal of every ad is to sell…a product, a service or an idea.
Want to increase your chances of achieving this goal?
Break it into smaller attainable steps.
In the case of advertising…THE FOUR STAGES OF THE BUYING PROCESS.
Here is everything you need to know to put the power of “smaller attainable steps” to work for your advertising goals.
First a review of the four stages every consumer goes through before they buy something:
Awareness: An ad catches your attention.
Interest: You become interested in the product because you can see a benefit.
Desire: You want the product because you strongly believe the purchase will make your life better and/or result in a satisfaction of needs.
Action: You decide that now is the time to act and buy.
When you apply the power of “smaller attainable steps” to advertising…
…the goal of every ad is to sell by advancing the consumer to the next stage.
NOTE: Steps are best taken one at a time, so stick to one step per ad. Trying to climb all the steps in one 30 second ad is like jumping UP a staircase. You will fail.
So the very first thing you need to do is determine what step you are climbing:
If nobody has heard of you and what you are selling…climb STEP 1: AWARENESS.
If people know who you are but don’t really care…climb STEP 2: INTEREST.
If people see a benefit in your product but have other higher priorities…climb STEP 3: DESIRE.
If people want your product but don’t have an immediate reason to buy…climb STEP 4: ACTION.
Everybody is going to have potential customers that are scattered across the various stages. The key here is to identify where the largest concentration is. So ask yourself:
What is the most common objection I encounter when I talk to people about my product?
Once you’ve identified your step, here is what you need to focus on:
STEP 1 – AWARENESS: You are introducing yourself, what you do, and why you do it. You need to focus on name recognition and, more importantly, your most interesting features (and I mean “most interesting” to your customer). Think of everything you’ve learned about “first encounters” with people and apply that knowledge here. Your “call to action” should be focused on “learning more about you”, so send them to your website and make sure there is something interesting waiting for them. Asking them to buy your product in an awareness ad is like asking someone to marry you on the first date. They’re not ready yet. Far from it.
STEP 2 – INTEREST: You want to demonstrate how your business will benefit the customer. Identify the top three benefits of your product and do an ad for each one. Stick to general benefits that will be experienced by all of your customers regardless of demographics. Back up all claims with real examples. Testimonials are great ammunition here as long as you don’t fake them (people can tell). I also like problem/solution style ads that tell a compelling story about a common problem and then presents the product as a solution. Your “call to action” is still to the website but with the offer to “find out more information AND the best way to buy”.
STEP 3 – DESIRE: You want them to picture using your product and how much better their lives will be because of it. Your message has to have a strong emotional anchor and provide a virtual test drive of the results. You will need to get more specific with your target. General benefits don’t do well here. Identify the top three targets and write a custom results based ad for each. Include the results in the “call to action” and a purchase path that best suits the specific target. Busy moms don’t want to visit your showroom with kids in tow. Make it easy for them to buy the right product on your website.
STEP 4 – ACTION: You want them to know, without a doubt, that NOW is the time to act. The most common mistake here is that most people think time limited discount offers and finance rates are the only options. You’ll find more effective triggers in current events and the collective concerns they raise. The devastation in Fort Mac makes people want to be prepared. The completion of another school year makes people want to plan for what’s next. The summer weather makes people want to take advantage of it now before it’s over. How does getting your product right now address these collective concerns? The answer will be the basis of your ACTION ad.
When you take the “smaller attainable steps” approach you gain short-term traction and a long-term plan. If its your first time up the staircase, you’ll feel the progress from customer interaction and you’ll know when its time to move to the next step. Once you reach STEP 4 and see an increase in sales, you should proportionally increase your radio buy and run ongoing INTEREST and DESIRE campaigns at the same time. Switch all of the ads over to an ACTION campaign when current events present a great opportunity. This is the secret to LONG TERM radio advertising.
Want to know if your radio advertising is using the power of “small attainable steps”? Want to find out what step you should be climbing? Contact Audio Active Advertising today for a free consultation.
Ryan Ghidoni is an 18-year veteran of radio advertising and has worked with some of the most creative sales reps, writers, producers and voice talent in the business.
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