Understanding The Basics Of Advertising

I get the L.A. Times delivered to my door every day, but I don't read it for the articles. It is a Pulitzer Prize winning newspaper, but the articles just don't interest me. Unlike most people, I read the paper for the advertisements because there is a lot to learn from them.

Over 90% of the ads run in the Los Angeles Times are horrible! Most of the ads I see are either ego-driven, have no headline, have no call to action, don't appeal to what the buyer is truly looking for or needs help with, or they're trying to be clever for clever-sake, and fail miserably.

When writing copy, I live by this premise:

"The purpose of advertising is to sell something."

Advertising is like an investment that you hope to get a great return on. However, most people treat it like they're playing Roulette in Vegas and bet all their money "on black."

The basics of good copy is to think in terms of words that sell.

Following are some basics in advertising that should help you make your advertising more effective.

  • Concentrate on your prospects. In the end you must persuade him/her no matter what method you use. And to do that, you must understand how he/she thinks.

  • Know your product - its materials, its manufacturer, its use, etc. Know its features inside and out.

  • Find the problem your product solves. The solution would, of course, be the benefit. It may be a mental, spiritual, physical, or financial benefit, but as advertising legend Maxwell Sackheim once said, "your product must have an excuse for its existence."

  • Never start writing your advertisement until you're totally excited about the task at hand. If you're not excited about your product, it will come out in your writing, and hence, the lack of results your ad produces.

  • Advertising is essentially news. Your ads must inform, educate, enlighten, inspire, or promise a reward for taking action. Apply your USP (Unique Selling Proposition) to your news angle. The USP works great as a news angle because if you're the ONLY one in town that does , isn't that news? If you have the lowest price in town and you tell them why you can beat every one else, isn't that news? It sure is. Ads should educate and inform, as well as persuade and move people to action.

    Understanding these basics of advertising will put you head and shoulders above your competition. Why? Because in my blunt opinion, 90% of all advertising stinks! And, most business owners (and some advertising agencies) don't understand that "the only purpose of advertising is to sell something."

    To learn how to write hard-selling copy and to master the basics of advertising from a world-class copywriter, get Joe Vitale's new course, "Advanced Hypnotic Writing" at: http://www.roibot.com/adhyp.cgi?R29882~_camp aign

    About The Author

    Craig Valine is the publisher of the The AwfulMarketing Alert Newsletter, "Where you learn GOOD marketing strategies by looking at those who do it really BAD."

    To subscribe his free newsletter, go to: http://awfulmarketing.com/ezinesubscribe.htm

    In The News:

    Visitors Bureau suspends...  Islands' Sounder

  • 80% of All Advertising Is Wasted Due To This Common Mistake

    You're flipping through this publication as you wait for your... Read More

    How To Create A Better Brochure

    Having a quality brochure makes a positive impression on a... Read More

    16 Ways to Make Your Business Cards Unforgettable

    Every time you hear someone say "May I have one... Read More

    Printing - How Do I Buy It?

    Why should I care where I get my printed material... Read More

    Information To Include On Your Business Card

    The logo and graphic elements that you include on your... Read More

    Science of Advertising and How to Benefit From It

    It is very important to realize that persons buy from... Read More

    6 Must-Have Elements of a Powerful Brochure

    Most brochures that businesses put out today end up doing... Read More

    Organizing Business Cards for Effective Contact Management

    Now that you've had colorful new business cards printed, and... Read More

    Understanding The Basics Of Advertising

    I get the L.A. Times delivered to my door every... Read More

    Hit Them With Benefits

    More about advertising from BIG Mike McDanielIt makes no difference... Read More

    Adding Art to Business Spaces

    Larger companies have learned that collecting art adds something special... Read More

    Double Your Sales Potential With Double-sided Business Cards

    Swapping business cards is one of the most basic and... Read More

    Developing a Formal Brand Messaging Document

    Ensure everyone in your company sings from the same sheet... Read More

    Imaging Isnt Everything

    Many home improvement contractors attempt to use advertising to expand... Read More

    Imprinted Promotional Items ? Their Many Marketing Applications

    There are many uses for promotional items. This means that... Read More

    Print Your Marketing Postcards For A Penny, Address Them For Free, and Automate the Whole Process

    This article will show you how to cut your printing... Read More

    Small Business Image

    The single easiest way to increase sales is to look... Read More

    Advertising 101

    Advertising has truly become a part of all of our... Read More

    Make the Right Advertising Decisions

    Advertising is a powerful and somewhat frustrating marketing tool. It... Read More

    Internet Advertising: How To Use The Golden Rule To Enrich Yourself.

    What is the golden rule of internet advertising?Give, so you... Read More

    Advertising - Does it Matter?

    When advertising, you need to sell your opportunity, your products... Read More

    3 Elements To A Deal-Sealing Classified Ad

    Have you ever wondered why your perfectly fine classified ad... Read More

    Testing Headlines

    A correspondent to AdBriefing, my monthly newsletter, has posed a... Read More

    10 Ways to Advertise Your Business For Free!

    At some point many small business owners are left with... Read More

    Advertising Headlines and How to Write Them

    1. Attract prospects with your headline Use your headline as... Read More