A is for Advertising

Print Advertising Is Not Dead.

Untitled19With all the marketing and social media options available today, many people and marketing pundits are advocating that traditional print advertising is becoming obsolete. Shame on them! Advertising is still one of the best ways to shape your message and support your brand. A good strategy at the local and regional level can really boost sales for small and medium sized businesses and professional services organizations.

A good ad — one that makes an effective impact — has a strong headline, utilizes well-written supportive body copy and incorporates a clean, inviting design. So many ads today are created by the media outlets and sold as a “value-added” bonus as a way to boost ad sales. I say there is very little of value when your ad consists of your logo as a headline, a list of what you do, and your address. Where’s the message? Where’s the emotional appeal to your target audience? Knowing who you’re trying to reach is so important when you’re vying with so many other media messages. You simply have to be relevant. Good Advertising is an Art, not something you just slap together because you know how to use a design program.

So while I truly believe that print advertising still holds a solid place in any good marketing strategy, it has to be well crafted. And, ideally, your print advertising is conceived as a campaign with a single minded focus to each ad and an overall objective or goal for the campaign. So, before you ask your local paper or magazine to create a “one off” ad for you for free, make sure you give some thought to what will resonate best with your target audience, and how you can inspire them to take the desired action you’re seeking.

Better yet, find a really good strategic agency with a strong creative portfolio. That’s a sure way to bring your advertising to life.


4 replies
  1. Sally
    Sally says:

    I completely agree. Creating a clean decisive headline along with an “aha” statement that follows and one that will carry over the web in a consistent and efficient manner is most effective. Print advertising isn’t dead it’s just morphed . . . and perhaps more effective on the local regional level and one that also carries over the world via the clouds . . . keep it up. Your work is stunning!

  2. Cherylp
    Cherylp says:

    While print advertising may not be completely dead, it is on life support. The problem with print advertising, isn’t the creative but rather the lack of newspaper readers under 50 and the ever increasing rates.

    The average age of a newspaper reader is 55 (Carnegie Corporation study, 2005), so unless your message is targeting the 55+ age group, newspaper is essentially dead.

    Any business placing an ad in a newspaper should ask to see independent research that shows the newspapers readership by age.

    • Darci
      Darci says:

      Thanks for your thoughtful comment Cherylp. Research is definitely a good thing. As is understanding your audience. The 55+ demo is one of the top targets for many businesses so I still submit that local publications are a good part of the marketing mix, especially for small and mid-sized companies — and that includes newspaper and their online counterparts.

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