I do not have an Advertising degree. I never took an advertising class in college. I never read a book on advertising. I don't get advertising- well no I do get it, I love Bud Light ads and the Macintosh commercials are hysterical...in fact I only watch the Super bowl for commercials. Okay, well my first job out of college (temporary) I did work in the Marketing/Advertising department....and I got to do some illustrations for some print ads....but that does not make me an Ad Exec. I did not write the ads, I did not pay for the ads....I did not even (it was a company that sold software for following stocks) get what the ads were about.
I have a confession to make: I don't believe in advertising. There I said it...that was hard. Okay I don't mean I don't believe, like not believing in the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy, it is just not something I believe will work for my company. There are a few reasons why I don't partake in any advertising (print and PAID that is):
- A national children's magazine will have (guaranteed at least one, if not more) one of our existing sales channels advertising. I sell wholesale and do not think it is good business to advertise and fight for direct sales, when I want my (our) customers to go to the existing sales channels.
- I do not have an Advertising Budget
- Advertising is very expensive
- Without any way of measuring the success of an advertisement, it is like throwing spaghetti at the wall and hoping it will stick
- Did I mention it's is EXPENSIVE?
Please note this is different from product placement, that is where a magazine, TV Show, Newspaper or some sort of Media asks (or your publicist asks them) to feature your product. Or a story written about your company, or you - this is a feature. I am talking about a paid advertisement where you are trying to get people to come to your website; You pay upwards to thousands of dollars for a full color ad, the larger the size ad....the more you pay.
And of course - as always, we rely heavily on press for driving traffic to Jamie's Painting & Design. I am a firm believer in press and I believe it can help a business get the word out, plus it introduces us to a whole new set of people that may not have heard of us. Press/publicity helps us out directly driving sales and traffic to our site, and it helps our sales channels - a win win! Now let me be clear this is about print advertising, not on line (though I don't do that either, keywords and organic search...another blog) Advertising is not where I like to spend our money.
That being said........drum roll please..........take a gander at the ad up above:
Call me a hypocrite or call me a liar....just don't call me late for dinner (sorry I uh....all of a sudden I am hearing my Dad in my head saying that). This is our very first advertisement after nearly five years in business. And for the record this is NOT going into a National Magazine, not even a trade magazine at that.
Here are some reasons why I think it will work:
- The ad is going to run in a booklet that is sent out to over 50,000 buyers that area attending the Atlanta Gift Show in July.
- This is a very targeted audience that will be attending the show LOOKING for new products
- We spoke with another company that advertised in the book for the last two years. Her ad alone generated enough pre-show orders that the show was paid for before she even left for Atlanta. She also told us that she would never do the show without the ad.
- I shared the cost of my ad with another company.
- We got the ad on the right side of the book, better for buyers flipping through it quickly.
Only time will tell whether this ad paid for itself or whether I will need to start working the night shift at our local Burger King (kidding.....I swear). Anyway the buyers guide will drop the end of May and we will wait and see. I may have to eat my words about advertising......please, please I am hoping I do, cross your fingers for me!