A look back at how to create successful ads or as I wrote some years ago “Advertising Success in 10 steps”
If any of you are like me, you will have files upon files of notes and other writings that you have kept over the years. I have them everywhere and it sure can get cluttered!
While getting rid of some of the junk and useless notes I came upon a blog post that I never published. It was done back on January 24th, 2008 and the title made me curious.
It was titled ” Ten Steps to Advertising success” and I have to admit, it wasn’t a bad post, but I sure needed to edit it and get myself on track.
I wondered what had changed over the years and I wondered if what I wrote then was still relevant today.
I am going to put the post the original text in here and will put the changes or the edits if there any on the bottom of each step in bold.
Advertising Success in 10 Steps
Here is a fact for you – Millions of people are marketing on the Internet! How does a beginner, a “newbie”.. figure out how to write an ad that pulls in responses with all this competition?
[ well nothing has changed, there are still a lot of people coming online to create an income and many of the new people are not being shown how to do things like advertise/promote and many of those who are being taught are being fed old information that will not work well today]
Many affiliate programs have pre-written ad copies for you. Do they work? An honest answer, in the beginning when they are new, then yes I am sure they do, but think on this, how many times have you seen the same rehashed ad over and over again? After a while you start ignoring them. By writing your ads, you create credibility to yourself as an expert in your field and there is just a feeling of satisfaction when your ad sells!
[ I have to say that at least from my opinion, this has not really changed. I’m not talking about the banners, although many of the experts will say they are as good as they once were. I love the idea that many companies are taking the time to create ways and means to help their affiliates, which is only right..but after awhile these same ads being shown really will not work anymore. A better way would be to study the ads that were created and then make it personal and create a story..adapt..change..think outside the box]
Here are 10 steps to writing ad copy that will work for you and increase your profits immeasurably:
[ I would love to hear what is working for you so that we can all learn and share..]
1. Find your niche market. What do you enjoy or know about? What are people interested in? These are questions that need asking. when you have the answers that suit you, then you can target your niche and don’t forget…Have Fun!
[Point number one ( and number two) is really showing how I was transitioning from marketing to blogging. So does point one even apply today for marketing purposes? I am going to say yes only because it is much easier to write an advertisement based on your own experience and thinking about your niche, creating good keywords and trends within that particular niche to help you write an ad the people will want to read. When you truly understand your niche it will affect your writing style, it will help you create a powerful image]
2. Study your Blog. Does it appeal to your niche market? For example, if your niche is on Health , then does everything on your blog, complement health? Ask yourself this question, does it make sense to have your blog on health and then have lets say mechanics on there?..An extreme example but I think you are getting the point.
[ O.K, you can really see that I was getting myself wrapped around blogging and to be very honest this has absolutely nothing to do with creating a good ad copy! So what can I really say about point two that might be useful? I would have to say that when you have your own blog and it is on a particular niche then having advertisements that will complement your blog will help with sales. When you create a good review on a product or service ..that is in effect ad copy, then think not just the global web, but think locally as well.]
3. It is a proven fact that you have very little time to grab your visitors attention. Appeal to the impulse in the viewers of your ad. How do you do this? Offer something free that is of value that your visitors would want, perhaps a free copy of your newsletter or an E -book. As long as it has value, then your visitors will come back again and again.
[ Once again this would be suited to a blog, but there is a gem of wisdom on point three. You really don’t have a lot of time to reach a person and you really need to learn to attract a customer and “lure” them into wanting to know more and subtly influencing them to buy the product. Depending on what you are selling, then using coupons or discounts as an example can be a great way for successful advertising.]
4. Create a swipe file. All the top Marketers use this tool, to help them with ideas. A word of Caution though Do Not Copy what you find..especially word for word, this is Plagiarism.
[Swipe files ( or as some people have called them ” inspiration files” have been around for a very long time and are considered one of the basics creating ad copy, but they can be used for just about anything where you want to save anything creative. While many people think that a swipe file is a fancy word for stealing ideas or words, the fact is a swipe file is more considered a template to help give you ideas when you are stuck.
While many people think of swipe files as a place to keep those headlines that have been used successfully and yes that is one reason for a swipe file, there are other reasons to have a swipe file to help create a successful ad. Consider creating a swipe file for calls to action, openings that were awesome, how about those phrases that you see that are either funny or had meaning and then of course there are the images that people have used to create imagery! If I had to give any caution to having a swipe file it would be to understand the context of why these headlines, images or opening worked for that particular person. What worked for them, may not work for you. None the less they will give you ideas and hopefully inspiration when you need it]
5. If you don’t have a good subject line ( headline) no one will read what you have to say. Ask yourself these questions- What types of headings grab your attention? Headings with all capital letters? Headings that take up the entire heading field of the ad? You have seen Ads with ” @@@!!!”, what do you think of them? It is a proven fact that caps are used for yelling. Do you want to be yelled at? Use caps sparingly for emphasis, and don’t pile on words just for length.
[I can’t argue with any of this – Is there anything you could add to the topic of headlines that would be useful for others?]
6. Speak to what you know and avoid hype. Over selling your product or service, will only discourage your prospects even before they get to your site. Relay your excitement about your product through your own experiences, not unbelievable exaggerations.
[ Interesting wording – don’t you think? Well again I can’t add or change too much in this wording. I have seen so many people who join affiliate programs and immediately start going into their pitch. They have no idea about what they have joined, they can’t answer even one question about what they have joined and I’m sure I could go on and on. Remember that a successful ad copy, a successful marketing is based on many factors..saying buy me..this is the greatest product since sliced bread is just not going to work!]
7. It’s crucial to your success in ad writing, to proof read everything you send out. Check your spelling, grammar, and punctuation. Make sure you test your links to make sure they work and actually lead to the places you intend them to go.
[ While this would seem like a no brainer, you would be surprised as to how many people do the exact opposite and have no care nor concern! Some time ago I wrote a post Free Online proofreading tools that will help improve Your Writing that might be of use to you]
8. There is no such thing as over testing your Ad for efficiency. Use your ad in all media venues. Track where your ad pulls from by using free or paid tracking services that are online and now a days, a good affiliate program will have tips and tricks that you can use .
[ It is so true that you can never take the attitude of “set and forget” your ads. You need to test them all the time for performence. Instead of going into this area of ad testing, I would suggest that you read How to Measure Success and Improve Your Performance via LinkedIn
You can also take the Google Analytics|Training and Certification that you can apply to any form of advertising]
9. You have found a winning ad that works for you, now what do you do? Keep submitting that successful ad to new places. A few sales will never wear out a good ad.
[While I can’t argue too much with what I wrote, I would have to also say that you don’t want to keep the same ad going everywhere – why? Remember what I said near the beginning? Just like people copying and pasting the same ad everywhere, after a while it is just going to be boring or in fact there might be something new to add. You can still keep the winning formula and adapt it to making that ad appeal to people on mobile, make that ad appeal to people in different locations, add an image to that ad ( if it is allowed) and help people convert through imagery, there are many things that you can do]
10. Be sure that your ad copy is consistent with any other content you have created.
[ Well I can’t argue with myself on that one, but I didn’t go far enough.
Let me ask you a question – Which came first the chicken or the egg? to make this question more specific – which came first the landing page or the ad copy?
I can’t answer how you create your marketing plan, but most people will create their landing page first and then their ad copy second.
That’s all fine and dandy, but what happens when that ad copy does not match the landing page? huh? A lot of people tend to forget what is on their landing page and go to town on their ad copy – when a prospect/pre customer goes to that landing page and the ad does not match with the landing page you know what will happen? bye bye customer!
What is the lesson here? Always be sure that your ad copy will correlate in some way to your landing page. A great suggestion is to highlight your benefits on the landing page and make sure that it relates to your “promise” on your Ad copy!]
Hopefully this critique of the article I wrote 6 years ago will help you with your own creation of successful ads and now you know how I tend to critique blog posts lol
If you have any questions or thoughts about any of these ways to create successful ads, feel free to reply in the comments below.