I was asked a great question recently by a very bright young marketer who inquired about are the key elements that are needed to be present to achieve excellence in advertising. I find these type of questions great on two levels. Firstly they go to the core of the matter about what all marketers need to strive for to potentially succeed in putting an effective advertising campaign together and secondly, given its importance how rarely it gets asked at all.
Well unlike the expression, I’m not sure how to define it but I know when I see it, the 3 key criteria for advertising are both easy to define and can be easily identified when used appropriately.
The 3 Key Elements Needed for Advertising:
1. A Hook
Simply put the ad needs stopping power which is the mechanism by which you can literally stop people as they are walking past or flicking through the magazine pages or scrolling through the website pages and stop them dead in their tracks at your ad. Look at the advertisement above from Audi. It stops you with both a visually striking piece but also the clever integration of Audi’s logo within the word Joy as a key attribute attributed to driving such a wonderful automobile.
Once your ad has managed to stop people (who are hopefully from your target market), you need to ensure that the means by which you stopped them was relevant and aligned to the needs and expectations of the target audience or otherwise they will feel as though they have been cheated and stopped on false pretences. And again referring this back to Audi ad above the relevance is clear enough as the experience of driving an Audi is very real being a superbly engineered motor vehicle.
The third and final element is branding. Now when I speak of branding I am not referring to only the corporate logo which is certainly present and strategically positioned in the bottom right hand corner of the advertisement (remembering that the eye reads diagonally down the page from left to right).
But it’s also everything else that a company does consistently in terms of all the different design elements that are consistently used and that both consciously and intuitively alert us to the fact that we are looking at an Audi ad.
Examples include the colors used, the relative positioning of key blocks such as headings, pictures and text on the ad to convey its core advertising message. Again by comparing the quality offerings that Audi give the market periodically you can see how consistently clean, efficient and uncluttered they are regardless of the model being promoted or the core message being espoused.
It’s obviously not a coincidence that highly successful multinationals like Audi so routinely produce advertising of this quality that gains attention, raises awareness and ultimately drives selective customer demand for its wide range of prestige cars.
Now go and review you latest ad or the last 2 or 3 and with a (constructively) critical eye review the 3 elements we have discussed in this post and apply them to your advertising to see how you can make it even better moving forward.
And remember also that if ever you want to learn more about developing proven strategies for your business you can by the Dan&Matt DVD Marketing Program that will cover the key sales and marketing strategies in full on: Dan&matt.com