What is an advertising campaign?
There’s no doubt about it, as our understanding of consumer and buyer psychology continues to grow and online algorithms continue to develop, our ability to create advertising campaigns which not only reach our target audience more effectively but have the ability to communicate more effectively, increases.
Advertising is still a fundamental element of any marketing, what some people mistake it for is the be-all and end-all of a marketing campaign. Such tools can be used effectively to increase the reach of any marketing message. What they shouldn’t do is use the algorithm to compensate for poor messaging.
Yes, you can get some results through creating a campaign with top level, rational messaging but they won’t be nearly as significant or as long-lasting if they don’t consider the deeper emotional needs of your consumers.
Why do I need to an advertising campaign?
An advertising campaign, used as part of an overall marketing strategy can be a highly effective method of generating interest for your brand, product or service if you understand what stage your company is at and where you want to get to.
For example, larger companies have the benefit of already being very well known. They can build on a lot of the knowledge their customers already have about their brand and therefore build on this knowledge throughout other marketing campaigns. For example, McDonalds ‘Gherkin or Gherkout’ campaign works because people are already familiar about the brand and it’s a clever way of creating more debate around their burgers, amongst their audience. We’re Gherkout
Many smaller companies don’t have a large enough audience they regularly market to, for something like this to work. During the earlier stages of marketing, when a business doesn’t have a mass following it’s necessary to consider:
- Ways they can generate familiarity of their brand in the awareness stage of the AIDA model.
- When this has been achieved, ways they can build interest and desire in their USP’s through marketing to both the emotional and rational sides of their potential customer.
- Continuing to reinforce the messages that work through increasing budgets.
What benefits will my business see from an advertising campaign?
A successful advertising campaign, whether it be online or offline will increase your sales and conversions and get potential customers talking about your brand.
Think about your existing messaging and if you genuinely believe it’s communicating effectively with your target audience, offering something unique to them, that your competitors don’t offer. If it is, great, well done. If not, imagine the success you’ll have amplifying a unique message to your potential buyers and customers, positioning yourself as a more effective solution than your competitors.
How do I create an advertising campaign?
First, it’s important to consider the market you’re operating in. Using a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) analysis you can consider both the internal strengths and weaknesses of your brand and the external opportunities and threats.
Using a SWOT analysis for a high-end mobile coffee van, this will consider:
- Offering quality coffee on the go for businesses, without having to leave the office.
- Offering their own coffee blend.
- Providing a personalised service to their customers – an opportunity to get out of the office and have a chat.
- Running a loyalty system, rewarding purchases.
- Loyalty created from the quality of the equipment, expertise of the baristas and serving their own coffee blend.
- Smaller footfall pulling up at offices, instead of being static as a coffee shop.
- Increasing consumption can be a challenge, as it’s hard to communicate regularly with office staff, with management not wanting them interrupted whilst working.
- The ability to offer a better quality coffee than the high street chains, through nurturing the coffee, not rushing to the end.
- Offering independence, through supporting a local business who offer something different versus what potential customers are used to.
- Ability to not only offer coffee but smoothies in the hot weather and food for breakfast/ lunch.
- Offers and promotions to encourage groups of friends out.
- Offering experiences, from ‘afternoon tea’ to ‘Friday treat packages’.
- Competition of free coffee inside the office.
- Other mobile food/ coffee vans.
- Local supermarkets offering cheaper alternatives and lunchtime meal deals at £3.50.
- Staff being low on cash at the end of the month.
Understanding what your business offers, what it can offer and the hurdles to overcome, allows the coffee van to start planning their marketing strategy and how advertising supports it.
Having a lot of confidence in their product, based on their offering and feedback from their audience, their immediate problem becomes in getting enough people to try the product first time. Other competitor products and management limiting communication can make this a challenge.
Therefore, they decide to create a brand awareness campaign to begin with. Although online advertising platforms will be critical to maintaining success of the campaign, through multiple messaging, they first need to consider the decision-maker and how to get that first purchase.
Targeting local businesses that have significant volumes of staff, they provide information through traditional marketing flyers, offering free demonstrations for staff. The flyer will position the business as a treat for staff that saves them going down to the local supermarket at lunch, encouraging more productivity around the workplace. Once followed up and booked in, the demonstrations will provide an opportunity to create a relationship with the customer.
By providing customers with a QR Code/ email address to apply for a discount voucher from their website, they collect customer data through a Facebook/ Google tracking pixel. This tracking pixel knows who’s been on their site and will allow them to advertise online to that person regularly, without them needing to leave the office. Ensuring the budget is managed correctly, this will ensure the coffee van remains front of mind.
Better still, when capturing additional sales, more traditional vouchers can then be handed out inviting customers and their friends to the coffee van for another discount, making the remarketing work twice as hard.
This advertising is great, but not nearly as effective without ensuring the messaging being delivered speaks to their audience. To create reasons for them to come back to the van, in addition to the discounts on offer, they’ll need to ensure:
- The quality of the coffee is immediately visible in the presentation and branding on the advert, along with a mention of their own blend.
- The expertise of the baristas is highlighted in the advert with the amount of years’ experience provided.
- Weather is considered and alternatives offered, such as smoothies on promotion when it’s hot.
- Situational packages are offered for groups, such as ‘afternoon teas’ or ‘treat Fridays’, offering a selection of cakes for friends to enjoy together.
- Promotions are offered at the start of the month and advertising budget invested then, not at the end of the month when people are less cash rich.
- Any lunchtime offers should be competitively priced in comparison to the supermarkets staff habitually visit.
Using online advertising tools, that reaches your audience with the right messaging, alongside other marketing channels (online or offline), will ensure your marketing campaign is as effective as it can be.
If you would like us to support you with some initial market research and provide some advertising recommendations to improve your sales and lead generation free of charge, get in touch here.
What else do I need to know?
Advertising is as effective as it’s always been. You can now reach a lot of people for significantly lower costs than were previously possible, through your computer. However, without the right consideration of your target audience, what they want and how you differ from your competitors a lot of it will fall on death ears.
Advertising is one piece of a much larger marketing jigsaw. Without considering when and how to use it in the buying decision-making process, you could be using the wrong tool for the wrong job. Our biggest piece of advice would be to thoroughly research your business and your markets, so you can create messaging that converts at the right time. The great thing is, effective messaging can be used to reach other audience members that may not be sitting online.
“Of all of our inventions for mass communication, pictures still speak the most universally understood language.”