1) Why should I consider advertising my business?
You already are advertising. You have signage and other elements you don't view as advertising, but in fact you are. What we need to do is find out what truly makes you unique and exploit it in the marketplace in an effort to help you grow. But realize, if you do nothing, you leave yourself open to being attacked by your competition.
2) Is radio advertising the right kind of advertising for my business?
Sometimes it is not. That is why we look at things on an individual basis and perform a full business profile to see what is the best way for you to use your advertising dollars, and there may be another form of advertising that would work better than radio. And know one important element about Mid-West Family Broadcasting of Springfield, we will not ask for your business unless we can find a way to improve it.
3) Then how do I start advertising?
Understand, diagnosis without analysis will lead to malpractice. So clear 2-hours off your calendar and allow us to conduct a business profile and ask as many questions as possible about your business so we can determine the right course of advertising action for your business.
4) How much should I expect to spend?
It is based upon your goals and expectations from your campaign, and we have a formula that helps us narrow down these numbers. So you are aware though, our best customers tend to spend a minimum of $20,000 per year and advertise year-in and year-out and don't ever plan on stopping their momentum.
5) What are the most common mistakes businesses make with their advertising?
First many business owners stop the campaign before it really can start working for them because of their desire for instant gratification (see The 12 Causes of Advertising Failure). The second most common mistake is not dominating one advertising medium (filling up on glass) before moving on to the next medium. They think they need to do a little of everything to get their name out there. But they must understand the media mix is media mediocrity.
6) I want to build my business now, what do you suggest?
It all depends on your goals, your level of expectations and the timeframe in which you want it all to happen. But be careful of the desire for instant gratification, it can be the course to killing your business. That is why we do complete business profile analysis; with business owners to see what the right direction is for their business.
7) What is the best way to advertise?
In our experience, the best results come from branding advertising. It allows a business to send a consistent message with a singular point that makes their business name a household word. Other forms work, but fade fast and have no long-term impact on the business overall.
8) How long should I wait before I should expect results?
It all depends on whether you are running and event oriented schedule or a branding schedule. If the event has a strong enough offer and a reason to take action now with a dominant schedule, you should expect results now. With branding, it is different. It depends on the consumer buying cycle of that product or service. Typically you should expect nothing in the first 13 weeks and you will not FEEL the results until after the first 12 months. Anything before that is a gift.
The hot new "buzzword" in business today. Branding is the implantation of an associative memory in combination with a recall cue. Make sense? It can be a difficult concept to grasp through a simple definition, so if your interested in learning more, let us take you through our "Branding Education" process.
10) Who creates my commercial campaign?
We have a Creative Services Department that works directly with your representative from the radio stations. Together along with you, the business owner, the commercial campaign is developed, produced and brought to the marketplace.
11) What should I say in my commercial?
An easier questions to answer may be what NOT to say in your commercial. In reality you should try to touch the consumers heart and their minds will soon follow. Don't focus on the minute that is important to you; instead focus on the wants and desires of the customer to make your business important to them.
12) How can I get guaranteed results?
By doing nothing, we can guarantee that nothing will happen. But if you are able to maximize a majority of the elements within the Marketing Bridge or A.S.I.P.E., more often than not, good things will happen.
13) I'm a small business with a small budget, can I still advertise effectively?
Yes, if you understand that the effect you'll get from your advertising will be based on your budget, expectations and the impact of the message. If you have a small budget with big expectations and an average message, you will not meet your expectations.
14) Can non-retail/service oriented businesses get results from radio?
Both retail and non-retail/service oriented business can and do get results from radio every day. Review our success stories for comments directly from business owners in this community. But realize, their greatest success has come from branding advertising that provides a consistent message so they become the business that the consumer thinks of first and likes the best.
15) Is short-term event advertising bad for my business?
If you are using it as your overall advertising plan, the answer would be yes. Sale-Sale-Sale can undermine your business health. The first event makes you feel great, so does the next one and the next and next - though it takes stronger and stronger offers, which means lower and lower margins, to get the same effect. And all you do is train your customer to wait for the next sale. Instead, if it is just a component of your overall advertising plan that includes a branding campaign then events can be a nice boost in sales from time to time as long as they amplify your branding message.
16) Should I advertise on other radio stations?
Provided you have the budget, the answer is yes. But don't dilute your other advertising to just add a station to the "media mix" because you'll just end up with media mediocrity.
17) Which form of advertising is right for my business?
All forms of advertising work, they just work differently. Our expertise is in radio, but we can inform you of the strengths and weaknesses for the following:
An intrusive media that is also strong for branding, but production can eat up a budget quickly and poor production can weaken the message. Plus when you buy television, you buy shows not the station (which is a big challenge for cable television advertising).
The king of passive media that is typically a destination. For example, if I am in the market for tires, I will look in the newspaper to see if there are any tires on sale. Newspaper is what most businesses think of first for advertising, but most don't understand it's weaknesses, including the fact it is the most expensive form of advertising, and that it cannot brand a business, meaning it only has short-term impact.
A passive media that is actually a directory and not a true form of advertising. According to TOMA Research, 62% if consumers say they would be more likely to call a business with a smaller ad from a business they'd heard of than and unknown business with a larger yellow pages ad. Businesses whose name is branded gain more results from the white pages than the yellow pages. Sadly, people tend to go to yellow pages when no business is branded in a specific category.
Another passive media that is able to get people to turn at the next exit, but cannot tell the compelling story that is your business.
Studies show that after 30-days most people who pass a billboard on a regular basis will allow the message to become a part of the landscape and disregard it completely. Meaning you have to either move it or reprint it, which is costly.
18) Should I hire an ad agency?
If you have an enormous advertising budget that is hard to handle in-house, or a low tolerance for dealing with advertising overall, then I would suggest you use and ad agency. But if your budget is not enormous or you want full creative control, then seek out individual media representatives that have enough expertise to help you reach your goals.
19) Should I use a jingle in my advertising?
Roy Williams in his book "Secret Formulas of the Wizard of Ads" states that jingles along with drama, humor and testimonials are the nitroglycerin of advertising and when used correctly, they have the power to move mountains, but handle carelessly and they'll blow up in your face. Music jingles can surprise Broca, but more often then put it to sleep. So if you go with a jingle make sure it is not mediocre or it will hurt your business.
20) Is there a difference between image advertising and branding advertising?
They have some elements that are similar but they are not interchangeable. Image advertising focuses on why that business is one of the "good guys" in the marketplace based on their contribution and involvement in that community so people will remember them. Branding is detailed in question #9 and can be explained in detail by one of our station representatives. The similarities lye in the fact they do not push a sale and are ran on a long-term basis. Outside of that they are very different.
21) How does the buying cycle affect my business?
Simply put, if your branding, you should set your expectation based on how often people will buy your product. To expect results fast when most consumers don't buy your product but once every 6 years would be unrealistic.
22) Should I do a remote?
Remotes should only be used when you are holding an event supported by a dominant commercial schedule that has a powerful offer that will draw people to your business during that remote. Just holding a remote does not guarantee a crowd or results if there is no real reason for people to take action.
23) Should I care about Arbitron ratings?
First we cannot discuss Arbitron ratings due to the fact we don't purchase them. But when it comes to ratings remember a quote from Wizard Partner Chuck Mefford who said "strong ratings never guarantee strong results. And it's results your looking for, correct?"
24) Should I care about reach and frequency?
This is an issue for ad agencies not for local business owners, and only if you have an enormous budget. If this is not the case, then doesn't worry about these forms of measurement (that again don't ever guarantee results).
25) How and who do I contact for more information?
Start by contacting our Local Sales Manager, Mark Birtch. Mark can direct you to someone who can help you and your business. You may call Mark Birtch at 1-217-629-7077 or by email at email@example.com.