5 of the Most Common Advertising Mistakes

Advertising is an absolute must for any business.  How will new customers find you if you don’t advertise?  Advertising can be one of the quickest ways to grow a new business.  However, if you do it wrong or make serious mistakes, it can also be one of the quickest ways to kill it. 

Before you invest money into advertising, make sure you do your research.  If you spend a lot of money and then make one of these common advertising mistakes, you’ll end up just wasting that money.  Instead, start familiarizing yourself with these 5 common advertising mistakes and how to avoid them.  You’ll save a lot of time, money, and heartache if you can stay away from them.

Audience Size

One of the most common advertising mistakes out there is targeting the wrong audience size.  One the one hand, you can target an audience that is too broad. If you are creating a product for middle-aged men, you can’t just target all middle-aged men.  You need to be more specific.  For example, maybe your ideal audience is made of middle aged men who like to golf and make $80,000 – $100,000 a year.  By targeting more specifically, you’ll waste less money on trying to reach everyone.

However, you can also target too narrow of an audience. To continue with the same example, if you targeted men ages 45-55 who like to golf, make $80,000- $100,000 a year, have 3 kids, own a home, and live in Detroit, you might be going too narrow.  If you add too many layers, you won’t really know if your ads have any effect at all.  Having too narrow of an audience can be just as bad as having too broad of one.

The Solution:

When you target your audience, keep it to a reasonable size and only add as many layers as you absolutely must.  Be specific but don’t be too exclusive.  After that, A/B test your ads to determine which are the most effective.

Focusing Only on the Product

Another common mistake is focusing only on the features of your products.  You can talk all you want about the newest features and luxury look of your product but no one will care.  If you want your advertising to be effective, you need to focus on your customers’ needs and wants.

The Solution:

When you talk about the features of your products, link them to a value.  If you’re using the newest technology, talk about how your product will save time.  Maybe new features are safer than old ones and so on.  Focusing on the needs and wants of your customers’ will help you actually reach your customers.

Lack of Tracking

You want to put your money where it will be the most effective when you advertise right? How will you know what advertising is most effective if you don’t track it? This is another common advertising mistake that many business make.  They may be making more money and bringing in more customers but they don’t know how. 

The Solution:

Start keying your ads.  Know where your customers are coming from.  You can use coupons, tracking phone numbers, specific links, and others to know what advertising is working and what isn’t.  Once you know what is effective, you can invest more money into that and bring in more customers, instead of just blindly placing ads everywhere.

Advertising in the Wrong Place

Hopefully, you’ve done some target audience research before placing ads.  If you haven’t, then how do you know that you are advertising in the right place? Too many businesses advertise everywhere without really knowing if their audience is there in the first place.  Are your customers really on Pinterest? Are they listening to that radio station? Will they really drive past that specific billboard? If you don’t know where your audience is, how will your advertising reach them?

The Solution:

Take the time to research your audience and understand their habits, preferences, and living styles etc.  The more you know about them, the more you’ll know where they are likely to be.  You can then put your ads where your audience will be most likely to see and react to them.

No Call to Action

Not having a call to action is another common advertising mistake but can be deadly to your business.  Just because someone sees your billboard or banner ad doesn’t mean they will be inclined to engage with your business.  You can’t just expect someone to seek out your business, but rather you have to give them a reason to call you.

The Solution:

The simple solution is to have a call to action on every one of your advertisements, including your website.  Most customers are willing to act but sometimes, they just need a little push in the right direction. That’s what your CTA is for.  Put some effort into your CTA’s and strive for something other than the generic “call now” for more effective results. 

Don’t Waste Money on bad Advertising

Stop wasting money and start avoiding these 5 common advertising mistakes today.  Understand your target audience and start putting ads where they will be the most effective.  Doing so will bring you more customers and make your business more successful.

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