Small Business Marketing

Goals of Your Advertising Message

Written by Amy Bax for Gaebler Ventures

What should a strong advertising campaign include? What do you want your customers to find out through your advertising efforts?

Before jumping into the planning of an advertising or marketing campaign, know what you need to get across to your target market.

You should already know strengths and weaknesses of your company and your competitor, along with needs and wants of the customers you have focused on.

Now it's time to come up with a strong message. Before deciding on one in particular, it is important to note what your goals are.

Here are a few things that any company should accomplish during a successful campaign.

Build on Your Image

You have already established an image at this point as a company and how the customer perceives your company. The advertising you do should somewhat stay within line of this image.

The goal is to strengthen this image, and keep promoting what you have already worked hard to establish.

A more conservative and professional company such as a bank or accounting firm should stay with how they want to be perceived with a message that conveys a message of professionalism and let their customer know that they are serious about doing business with them. On the other hand, businesses such as bars or entertainment venues will want fun, light-hearted advertisements that convey the message that their establishment will provide a good time for everyone who visits.

By being knowledgeable on how customers want to perceive your business, you can strengthen your message.

Provide Information

Often there is a specific reason why a company decides to advertise at a certain time. For example, introducing a new product or promoting an event are two common reasons why many small businesses decide to begin an advertising campaign.

Make sure your advertisement provides clear information such as store hours or location so they know how to reach you. Or, if you are promoting the business in general, make sure to find a way to get people to understand what your business is about, what you provide, and what to expect. This helps a customer to decide if they want to pursue your company further in the buying process.

Persuade to Buy

This is also an opportunity to advertise your position versus the competition.

Why are you superior? What makes doing business with you so much more beneficial? If you have an advantage over others in your industry, this is the place to boast about it.

By using persuasion tactics such as comparing your product to that of a direct competitor, you attempt to persuade customers to choose your product over another that they may currently be using. This tactic is often used to attract customers of another to try your brand out and hopefully switch over to your business.

Support Other Marketing and Promotions Efforts

Contests, sales, and events are also a good thing to include in your advertising campaign to attract people and get them into the store. Not only will they come because of interest in the sale, it's a way of bringing them in to see or experience other products and services you offer.

Also, you can inform your audience to visit your website where they can find more information. By doing this, you are directing them to another outlet of promotion of your business where they may be further convinced to choose you over another business.

Amy Bax is interested in providing innovative informational resources to entrepreneurs. She is currently an MBA student at the University of Missouri - Columbia.

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