Difference Is Good

Think about it! What makes one advertisement, promotion or e-mail stand out and capture your attention enough to get its message across? Several years ago, I was fortunate enough to attend a seminar on advertising which involved a consultant with many years of background in advertising. He offered many good suggestions and touchstones to improve the way one should develop promotional advertising packages.

Like many such presentations, one thing he said over and over seemed to impress me more than anything else. It was this simple advice: "Do something different than your competition!" He suggested that we should firstly take notice of what everyone else is doing in their advertising. What ads get your attention and why? If you are dealing with direct mail, and all the mail you are getting across your desk are in black and white or gray envelopes, make your mailing a bright neon color like hot pink. If you are dealing with e-mail ads, what is the header on the e-mail that demands that you open it? How is it different? What makes it stand out from the pack? In, order to be effective, it must be different!

Display ads in newspapers are a good medium to notice as examples of effective copy writing that gets attention. Skim the papers and make note of the ads that get your attention. Notice billboards as you drive down the highway. This medium has only a few seconds to connect with you and convey their message. What is it about the color, size, artwork or wording that is different than the other billboards you ignored? The old tried-and-true formula of AIDA in advertising is still applicable today. Attention, Interest, Desire and Action. You first have to get their attention before you can give them your message.

If you fly a balloon over your place of business, it will get lots of attention. When 50 balloons hit the skies from the competition, it is time to move on to search for something different to convey your sales message. Be flexible; don't get stuck in a rut which limits you to only one type of advertising. On the internet this means diversifying your approach to include e-mails, social media, submissions to search engines, newsletters and e-zines, direct mail outs, affiliate programs and others. Remember, "Different is Good!" when it comes to getting some attention to your sales message.

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