Monday, October 29, 2007

Radio, Internet or magazine ads...oh my!

Which outlet is best for you?

While just about every advertising outlet will try to tell you that they are the absolute best place for you to place your ad dollars, It's up to you to figure that out on your own. By looking at the facts, talking to others in the business and doing a little research you'll get a clearer picture and won't need to rely ion the cleverly marketed media kits that you have been given. Not all advertising outlets are the same. Radio and TV are great sources to get a quick “overnite” response from. The Newspaper would be too, except that their market share is now down to 16% so unless you have a very unique targeted market that is exclusive to the newspaper I’d skip that outlet. Magazine print ads are a great place to advertise if you want long term steady growth. Magazines have a longer shelf life than any other form of advertising and they have a more loyal readership.

Magazines get passed around from sister and mother to friend, co-worker and relative. They are the most trusted source of info because the reader can spend leisure time going through it page by page. If there is an ad that they aren’t interested in they simply turn the page and move on. But even that ad may register for future reference because they didn’t fast forward through it or switch channels to avoid listening to it they had to glance at it without fear of having something shoved down their throat. But not all magazines are alike and in the wedding business there is an abundance of wedding magazines to choose from. This is where it is important to pay attention!

There are resource guides that simply have your ad next to many others with very little to no content. Generally any content is regenerated stuff like seating charts, checklists, how to hire a professional, what flowers are in season, not terribly interesting info to most brides. Virtually all of these are FREE publications. You may think that's a plus. Since it is free than it is easily picked up by brides BUT according to Monroe Mendelsohn Research, authors of the so-called affluent study and the authority on affluent consumers they don’t carry the same weight as paid for magazines.

In the paid for magazine category there is a wide variety to choose from. The Glamour mag designed to also have little content but great haute couture images. Beautiful to look at but not terribly useful. This is a no brainer. It's true most bride's will pick it up for the flash they may even buy it but does it sell anythng. We think not. That isn't any kind of high tech survey but when I think back on my wedding...I was very typical. I spent a small fortune picking up every magazine I could get my hands on including the haute couture versions. I flipped through it admiring the beautiful and sometimes too funky images and laid it down never to be picked up again. Then ther is the content wanna be. It's really a Resource Guide as described above but has advertorials written and generally unedited by advertisors. That's great cheap content but readers see through that quickly. Many times because the advertorial is clearly pushing one particular business or product or something it as a very flat resonance to the bride looking for fresh new info that she can use. The last type of magazine is the one that hires writers and page stylists to research, write, design and create new content and incorporate advertisers and non advertisers (also known as we-hope-you-will-be-advertisers) this is the magazine designed to ignite the readers senses and keep her (or him) coming back for more.

Now let's not forget the internet! The fastest and cheapest form of advertising. With most affluent households owning 3 computers or more and more than 60% of households earning $85,000 or more shopping and researching online it's the surest way to reach the affluent, educated market. No matter which option you choose the internet should absolutley be incorporated in your ad campaign. Not just individual internet ads but if you advertise in a magazine make sure that they also have good online exposure that they offer you.

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