Looking to enhance your marketing campaigns through storytelling? Check out this article by Wizard of Ads™ for tips on avoiding predictability in advertising.
Have you ever watched a movie or read a book to discover that you already knew what would happen? That you could guess the plot before it even started unfolding?
Ironically, predictability is far too common in storytelling and and even worse in advertising.
A story that has no intrigue or excitement leaves the audience with an unfulfilling experience. It’s a story that is quickly forgotten.
So why do so many stories fall victim to predictability?
The answer may lie in the writer’s desire to craft a ‘safe’ narrative. After all, we all love stories where the guy gets the girl, or the hero defeats the villain.
These stories, however, need more depth and complexity, with unexpected twists and nuanced characters. They need the courage to take the risks necessary to create something truly memorable.
Maybe the guy doesn’t get the girl because she ends up with someone else, or they both end up alone.
Maybe the hero turns into the villain.
People love a mystery, a twist, an unexpected surprise. But they also want it the story to reconcile by the end.
Let's break down the four basic steps in every good story.
The Good, the Bad, and Brilliant Story Tellers
When it comes to crafting a good story, there are a few key elements that must be present:
1. Create a character people like, believe in and can relate to.
2. Launch that character on a journey.
3. Do terrible things to that character.
4. Surprise your reader/listener/viewer with what happens next.
Unfortunately, many authors can execute steps one and two but falter at steps three and four. To become a good, or even brilliant, storyteller, you must complete all four steps.
The key to succeeding at steps three and four is to be creative, imaginative, and unpredictable. As a storyteller, you must think of ways to shock and awe your audience. You must surprise people with your story, or they will lose interest.
This unexpectedness can come from plot twists, unexpected character interactions, unusual scenes, and even surprising story endings.
While crafting these components, however, it must make sense. A brand story must be more realistic and logical for your audience to remain engaged. Instead, you must find the perfect balance between unexpected and plausible to keep people hooked.
If you can create a story that is both unexpected and logical, your audience will eagerly await the next chapter.
At Wizard of Ads™, we understand the power of surprise and the importance of making sure that it remains believable. That’s why we use story-based marketing techniques to keep your target audience enthralled to the very end.
From creative copywriting to engaging visuals, we ensure that every element is carefully crafted to deliver the maximum impact.
Story-based marketing can provide a robust foundation for long-term customer loyalty. Creating an ongoing narrative and engaging your customers in a story can keep them coming back for more.
So, are you ready to take your marketing to the next level?
Book a call with Ryan Chute today to learn more about our story-based marketing approach.
Predictability Is the Silent Assassin of Storytelling
Every good story begins with a statement that triggers more questions than answers.
This unexpected element—this twist and that turn—keeps readers, listeners, and viewers entranced. Our authenticity is compromised when we provide too much information upfront or tell a predictable story.
Ocean's Eleven, one of the most famous heist films, is an excellent example of how to avoid predictability in storytelling. Here is a swift line of dialogue from the movie:
“I’d say you’re looking at a Boesky, a Jim Brown, a Miss Daisy, two Jethros, and a Leon Spinks. Not to mention the biggest Ella Fitzgerald ever.”
While this may seem like an unrelated and strange string of references, I was intrigued. This line alone sums up the entire plot.
Let's break it down, shall we?
A Boesky is a reference to the stock trader Ivan Boesky, convicted in 1986 of insider trading.
Jim Brown is a reference to the NFL running back.
Miss Daisy refers to a character from Driving Miss Daisy who uses a chauffeur to drive her around.
Two Jethros is a reference to Jethro Bodine from The Beverly Hillbillies.
Leon Spinks refers to the Olympic gold medal boxer who unexpectedly beat Muhammad Ali in a Las Vegas prize fight.
Finally, Ella Fitzgerald is a reference to the iconic jazz singer who shatters a wine glass in a television ad.
Using these references together, Ocean's Eleven successfully provokes the audience to consider the film's implications.
And while we may not all be as talented as writers Steven Soderbergh and Ted Griffin, their storytelling can inspire us.
“Once Upon a Time…”
So, how do we use this technique to tell our own stories?
For example, think about a few of the most remarkable jobs you’ve done if you own a home service business. How did you help them? Who did you serve? What did you do?
Now that you have the details, make it fiction.
That's right, even if it happened in real life, change the names, locations, whatever you need to.
Once upon a time, 87-year-old author William Lederer said, "The public is more willing to believe fiction than non-fiction."
The Ugly American, the famous 1958 novel he wrote alongside Eugene Burdick, was based on real events. It wasn't until James Michener, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author, told Lederer to fictionalize the story that it became a hit.
The Ugly American stayed on the New York Times list for 78 weeks. It also inspired what we know today at the U.S. Department of State's Foreign Service Institute.
So what can we learn from Lederer's success?
- Fiction allows us to introduce characters and tell stories that can be more engaging than facts. When we create stories—whether for marketing or teaching—we give our audience something to connect emotionally. And when our content evokes an emotional response, it sticks in the minds of those who experience it.
- Just because it's "fiction" doesn't mean it can't inspire real-life action.
How Microsoft Tells Their Story? - according to Steve Clayton
Unlike Lederer, Microsoft doesn't use fiction to tell its story. Instead, it focuses on creating content that tells an inspiring story of progress and growth.
An example is Microsoft's “Microsoft by the Numbers” and the story of 88 Acres.
88 Acres, written by Jennifer Warnick, describes the evolution of Microsoft's campus in Redmond, Washington. It tells the story of Microsoft’s journey from its start in 1975 to becoming an innovative global leader.
The story was published off-the-radar without any amplification from within the company. That was until Jennifer's story received correspondence from multiple corporations the following morning. A variety of organizations and storytellers alike has since recognized 88 Acres. In fact, many corporations offered to purchase the technology, or some variation of the 88 acres, for their own use.
But what was their secret to storytelling success?
Microsoft’s Chief Storyteller, Steve Clayton, may have an answer.
The 5Ps of Storytelling
Over time, Microsoft has developed a framework for successful storytelling.
Derived from their company values, they identified the 5Ps of storytelling: People, place, pictures, platform, and personal.
People are the heart and soul of any story, and Microsoft’s audience is no exception. When telling a story, Microsoft always starts with the people they have helped. This is beautifully showcased in Project Emma, where Microsoft's Haiyan Zhang creates a watch to assist people with Parkinson's Disease.
Clayton emphasizes that every story should start and end with the people who benefit from Microsoft’s work. The campaign should focus on how the product will help people and make their lives easier.
Discuss why you are telling the story; who will be impacted and how?
The story can be truly compelling by understanding the impact of the product/service and how it helps people.
Like any good story, you must create a deep connection between the reader and the environment.
What is the setting? What are the locations? Where did you bring people together?
By describing the setting, the reader can imagine themselves in the story. As a result, it helps your audience understand why the product/service is important to people.
Take Microsoft's story on empowering Kenya and the world with high-speed, low-cost Internet, for example. In the story, Microsoft virtually transported readers to Nanyuki, Kenya, and explained how they bridged a significant gap.
By connecting people, culture, nature, and technology, Microsoft's solution contributed to a thriving community by making information more accessible.
Microsoft also used powerful imagery to illustrate technology's impact on people's lives, such as empowered entrepreneurs and students.
Microsoft's story was an inspiring, powerful example of what setting and language can do for a story.
According to Microsoft's very own Satya Nadella, "great assets will travel." In other words, if you have a great visual asset, it can be used to tell many different stories.
Microsoft has had great success with this approach. For instance, when Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella was announced, they released a single intro video and interview.
What was the reason for this?
External platforms had no choice but to use Microsoft's content, which gave them more control over their narrative.
Millions of people saw and shared the content, reinforcing Microsoft's narrative.
Nadella's announcement, however, was one of many assets that were controlled. If you Google image search "Satya Nadella," you'll see mostly branded assets from Microsoft.
Again, this is an example of how a company can control the narrative and ensure that its message resonates seamlessly. Not to mention, many people saw Microsoft— which is critical for any business.
Platforms are fantastic tools for amplifying a message and ensuring it reaches the broadest possible audience. There’s only so much an individual can do to promote a message before they run out of steam.
Businesses need to look beyond their channels when promoting their brand or messaging. By leveraging the power of various platforms, companies can ensure their message reaches the right people at the right time.
Microsoft’s 2019 Super Bowl ad is an excellent example of how powerful platforms can be. Microsoft spread its message to millions in just one night by using broadcast and digital channels.
Their beautiful story, however, didn’t begin and end with the Super Bowl.
Microsoft's Xbox Adaptive Controller ad continues to live on today, inspiring viewers to make gaming accessible to everyone.
Using different media outlets, Microsoft continues to share its message and make a lasting impact beyond the Super Bowl stage.
Refrain from counting out the power of utilizing various platforms to make your mark. It is the way to reach millions of people around the globe and make a lasting impact.
If you're a business owner, you understand that your business was built on a foundation of love, passion, and care. You put your heart and soul into creating something you can be proud of.
The same principle should apply to how you promote your business.
Personalizing your marketing efforts is key to connecting with customers on a deeper level. Show them that there is a natural person behind what they are buying. Tell them about your business, your story, and why they should support you. This will make customers feel more connected to your brand, create trust and ultimately increase sales.
In 2014, Microsoft showcased this idea with its Skype Translator demo. The demo shows the audience how technology can remove language barriers and help create a more human connection.
This example demonstrates how technology can create a more personal connection between people and businesses. During the demo, Steve Clayton speaks in English to a German-speaking woman, Melanie Schoebel, who resides in Germany. Through the Skype Translator, the two can communicate effortlessly.
The same concept applies to your personas as well. Your personas should represent your target audience in a way that makes them feel connected to your business.
So, during your next campaign, foster a humanized connection.
Be genuine in your communication.
Show some excitement in your content.
Go the extra mile to make your audience feel special.
Creating an authentic connection will establish a stronger relationship with your target audience.
How Predictable is Your Story?
Following our discussion of predictability, take a moment to think about the elements that make up your story.
Think about the good, the bad, and even the ugly.
Now, ask yourself, "Is my story predictable?" Are the love, devotion, and determination behind your business apparent?
If not, it's time to create a more consistent narrative that accurately conveys your core message.
- Bring the depth, complexity, and emotion behind your story to life.
- Elevate your story beyond facts and figures, and create an impactful narrative.
- Showcase the unique experiences and moments that led you to your current success.
You'll create an emotionally charged story that resonates with your customers by creating an engaging narrative. Your account may inspire others along the way.
At Wizard of Ads™, we believe everyone has a story. And it is our mission to help you bring your account to life.
We specialize in helping brands create powerful, meaningful stories that help them connect with their customers on a deeper level.
So let us help you craft a fantastic narrative that inspires and captivates your audience. Together, we can ensure that your message is clear, engaging, and effective.
To get started, book a call with Ryan Chute of Wizard of Ads™ today!
Your story can make a difference - so let’s get to work.
Want to convey your truth in advertising in the most compelling way possible? Learn the trade secrets in this Wizard of Ads™ article!
With the rise of digital media and a greater focus on uninspired factual ads, people rarely observe false advertising. Every consumer today is all about the truth. After all, a good bit of Google research can tell much about the truth in advertising. As such, sensible consumers can smell false ads that aim to deceive them from a mile away.
We can never contend the importance of truth in advertising. That's not up for debate.
However, the truth is not necessarily believable, interesting, or relevant simply because they are true. You must always wrap the truth in advertising under a compelling narrative. The strength of fact-based ads depends on how stimulating and persuasive you craft your advertisements.
Come to think of it. Why do advertisers use testimonials? Even when some of them are not entirely true, testimonials can sway the hearts of listeners. Which, in some way, adds more heft compared to bombarding consumers with dry statistics and data.
To uphold your truth in advertising, you must work with storytelling professionals who can effectively convey your story. This requires someone with fundamental knowledge of narratives and antenarratives. Lucky for you, we're the experts at it, and we'll give you a comprehensive guide in this article.
If you're interested to learn more about it, keep reading.
The Three Different People
Dean Rotbart, author and host of Monday Morning Radio, described people as having three personas:
- The first is the person you see whenever you look in the mirror. According to him, this is the person you believe yourself to be.
- The second persona is the person others perceive when they look at you. This is the person that others believe you to be.
- The third person is the real, genuine and unadulterated you. It is the rough average of what you see personally and what others see in you.
Here's the caveat: all of these things represent the truth.
What you believe yourself to be is your version of reality. Similarly, others see you as the person they believe you to be. However, given the nuances and differences in perceptual reality, neither persona captures the entire truth.
Now, how is this information relevant?
Here's the catch: everyone is deceived by their delusions. But there's a way to twist people's perceptual reality in your favor. The secret? Stories— the interesting ones.
“Know something, sugar? Stories only happen to people who can tell them.” —Allan Gurganus
The truth happens to everyone, but only storytellers can transform truth into stories. Whatever rhythm, style, prose or narration storytellers use becomes attached to the truth. In the same way, the truth in advertising takes its conversion strength from the narrative behind it.
All businesses possess a set of truths that form the foundation of their business. This same truth reflects in their story— the brand image, public communication and advertising. However, even staggering statistics and incredible facts lose their value when paired with poor storytelling. In other words, the truth and how you deliver them influence their overall impact.
If you want your ads to supercharge your truth in advertising, give it a good story. Or better yet, trust us to write those compelling truth-driven narratives for you. Book a call to learn more about how we can help tell your truth— in the most compelling way possible.
Antenarrative vs. Narrative
Talking about the three personas sets a precedent for fully understanding storytelling and the truth in advertising.
Everyone has heard of the term "narrative" before. It is typically used to refer to a coherent story with a beginning, middle and end. We often see narratives in movies, books, and other forms of media. A storyteller creates them in retrospect, arranging the scenes artfully and integrating them into an appropriate setting.
On the other hand, antenarratives may be a new concept to many readers and business owners. Antenarratives are people's unedited, incoherent, logic-lacking, chaotic and disconnected lived experiences. They are the unadulterated puzzle pieces that serve as building blocks before a story can happen. In other words, they are the way things happen.
A skillful arrangement of antenarratives, paired with perfect execution, results in a story that sparkles with fairy dust. Conversely, if the storyteller organizes predictably, the story will reek of a dog's breakfast. Punchlines are funny because they are strategically placed antenarratives that break a story's monotony and chronology.
"Antenarrative happens to everyone. But stories only happen to people who can tell them." —Roy H. Williams
Quentin Tarantino is one of the best storytellers and movie directors. His movies are composed of scattered bits and pieces of open-ended antenarratives that stand alone. However, he always finds a way to sew each scene together to create one cohesive piece. As such, it's impossible to predict the conclusion of his films, and they leave audiences wowing at the end.
The main keyword behind the strength of a narrative is retrospect. Specifically, a retrospective few of all antenarratives happened during those lived experiences. Through a retrospective view, people can recall past events and eliminate irrelevant antenarratives that do not support the story.
Like people, businesses go through their own lived experiences. The sum of all these antenarratives creates the truth of the brand. As a result, they reflect on a company's core values, guiding principles, company culture and even advertising.
However, not all antenarratives become part of that truth. When it comes to truth in advertising, you want to keep the best antenarratives that make your company look good. You won't create ads that deliberately incriminate your business, making audiences second-guess working with your company.
Pulitzer Winning Books and their Narratives and Antenarratives
Narratives are polished and varnished versions of antenarratives. Think of a research paper that's undergone many revisions before being the perfect rendition, ready for publication. However, some finely crafted fiction yet rough-hewn antenarratives make it to the big leagues.
Below, we'll look at two Pulitzer-awarded books that perfectly represent the use of narratives and antenarratives.
The Old Man and the Sea
"The Old Man and the Sea" is a classic novel by Ernest Hemingway. It features the epic struggle between about an aging fisherman and the greatest catch of his life. For 84 days, the Cuban fisherman called Santiago sets out to sea only to return empty-handed. Conspicuously unlucky, even his most trusted apprentice, Manolin, left his boat for others.
However, the intensity of the narrative began rising on the 85th day. Santiago went beyond the island's coast, trying his luck against the aggressive gulf stream. Finally, his bait catches a big fish that he knew was a marlin. The man tries to hook the fish back but struggles and the fish begins pulling the boat instead.
The majority of the narrative revolved around this push-pull dynamic. But during these moments, we explored countless antennaratives beyond Santiago's lived experiences.
For instance, Hemingway detailed Santiago's physical suffering and exhaustion. We also had the chance to enter Santiago's perceptual reality and existential thoughts. Finally killing the marlin, we are greeted with Santiago's battle against mako sharks and losing fish's meat to the predators.
The story takes an odd turn when an exhausted, empty-handed Santiago returns and goes into a deep sleep. During this, tourists and fishermen gathered to adore the carcass of the biggest fish they'd ever seen. Finally, the story closes with Manolin bringing Santiago coffee and talking about baseball.
Did you notice the roller coaster ride of antenarratives throughout the story? Despite these seemingly bizarre and disconnected details, Hemingway managed to piece them together into a perfect narrative. This complete narrative is now Santiago's story, and with Hemingway's perfect delivery, it also became everyone's truth.
The truth in advertising follows the same principle. How people view your brand's truth depends on how you effectively piece your antenarratives together. Some antenarratives will never make it in the final cut of your advertisements, and that's okay.
Because ad writers never let the truth stand in the way of a good story.
Let's look at another antenarrative-powered publication.
"Founding Brothers" is the brainchild of award-winning author Joseph Ellis wherein he explored the people that built America. In his landmark history work, he explored how deeply flawed individuals confronted the challenges to set the nation's course.
Ask anyone outside the US, and they'll describe America as the land of the free. Others may even add that success and wealth are achievable through hard work and determination. Despite the country still being rife with inequality and bureaucracy, to some degree, foreign people's perceptions have some merit.
However, that was never always the case.
The United States of America was more a fragile hope than a reality in the 18th century. While we view the founding fathers as great people, as we should, they are not free from flaws. History books tell the tale of their bravery in breaking free from Britain's grasp. But books will only delve into important antenarratives like their clashing personalities, troubles among the ranks and character flaws.
Hamilton, Burr, Jefferson, Franklin, Washington, Adams and Madison were never perfect. And these shortcomings would have cost this landmass to remain an extension of England. But despite these challenges, America rose from the ashes of a shattered dream. "Founding Brothers" brings reveals the vital issues and personalities of America's Founding Fathers.
Here's the thing: they never thought after three centuries, people would refer to them as the Founding Fathers.
These antenarratives are omitted from history books and class lectures because they give America a bad name. The course of time could have gone differently considering their demeanors, dispositions and differences.
What matters is they signed the Declaration of Independence, right? That seems to be the problem.
"But you and I live under the curse of post facto knowledge." —Roy H. Williams
Antenarratives are the building blocks that form the truth— the story. However, our post facto or after-the-fact knowledge urges us to challenge the very foundations of the story— the antenarratives. That's why businesses integrate as many facts, statistics, data and truth in advertising. But that's where problems occur.
Post facto knowledge is always troublesome, especially when crafting ads, and Roy H. Williams has a comprehensive explanation as to why:
- Facts are not necessarily believable just because they are true.
- Facts are not necessarily interesting just because they are true.
- Facts are not necessarily relevant just because they are true.
You can't just throw in antenarratives and expect people to chew them up like a well seasoned, medium-rare steak. Wrapping those facts in a compelling narrative upsurge the impact and relevance of your ads.
Let me repeat what I said earlier: never let the truth stand in the way of a good story.
Ad Writers and the Truth Within Stories
Even the most popular brands use crafty narratives to convey their truth in advertising. Let's look at the antenarratives of some famous brands:
Harley Davidson's "American by Birth. Rebel by Choice" slogan
Japanese manufacturers have always taken the lead in motorcycle and car technologies for many years. Harley Davidson's marketing slogan is built around the central idea of giving American customers a sense of freedom. It is a freeing statement that breaks motorcycle enthusiasts from the shackles of superior Japanese engineering.
Harley-Davidson is an American brand, hence, American by Birth. Harley has also been associated with a rebellious spirit and a strong sense of independence throughout its history. Whether riding their iconic motorcycles or rocking the brand's famous logo, people always embody this bold, unyielding attitude.
Their target is people who value the prestige of owning one of Harley's badass gas-guzzling bikes. Millennials who firmly stand against vehicles for their environmental impact will never understand the art of riding Harleys. That's why Harley riders are rebels by choice.
Willie G. Davidson once said, "motorcycles have always been dramatic. They are not for everybody and never will be. This is a product that people can take to an extreme as a means of self-expression."
Capturing this essence in marketing messages has allowed Harley to remain one of the most recognizable brands in America.
Volkswagen's "Think Small" advertising campaign
Volkswagen was not too popular post the second world war. After Hitler's fiasco, redeeming Germany from shame and economic downfall was far from easy. At the time, the United States became the world's consumer superpower. The car industry was also growing in their favor, where muscle cars and sedans began booming.
Fifteen years after world war II, Volkswagen found itself in a bubble. They developed a two-door, odd-looking, rear-engine mini economy car called the Beetle. It was unique, but the looks didn't match consumer preferences at the time. Not to mention, VW manufactured the Beetle in a plant that the Nazis built in Wolfsburg, Germany.
However, Volkswagen's Think Small ad campaign turned Beetle into a global sensation.
How? Simple. Volkswagen conveyed the truth in advertising, but only the truth that mattered.
Allow me to retort.
Their Think Small campaign centered on a series of antenarratives that explained the advantages of owning a Beetle. Paired with great graphic design, Ad Age ranked the ad series as the best ad campaign of the 20th century. Here are some examples:
- They wrote "Think small" on a page featuring a plain white background and a small image of the Volkswagen Beetle.
- "And if you run out of gas, it's easy to push."
- "It makes your house look bigger."
- "We do ours. You do yours." They showcased a factory-produced Beetle on the right pane and a colorfully painted Beetle on the left. This ad ushered in a new wave of marketing called the "creative revolution."
- "They said it couldn't be done. It couldn't." In this campaign, we see the legendary basketball center Wilt Chamberlain beside the small Beetle. Volkswagen said the Beetle is not for the 7'1" but can fit up to 6'7" people with generous headspace.
In their ad campaign, Volkswagen shared many facts, a.k.a. antenarratives,, which brought the Beetle its well-deserved glory. However, they omitted some antenarratives that would have cost them their game. Some people would feel sore knowing it was manufactured in a Nazi-built plant in Germany. So they did the right thing, omitting a fact and highlighting other facts that make their brand look good.
Don't mistake me. It's not about deception, false advertising or lying to your target audience about defects or product flaws. That is plain wrong. After all, Harley-Davidson and Volkswagen never lied in their ads.
You're simply focusing on the antenarratives that perfect the narrative of your advertisements. In other words, you're telling a TRUE story that best serves your clients while also serving your business.
That is how you use truth in advertising.
Again, never let the truth stand in the way of a good story.
At Wizard of Ads™, we're all about conveying the truths that matter. If you want people to know your brand's truth, we can do it for you in the most compelling way possible.
Book a call with Ryan Chute, and let's reveal your truth in advertising.
Want to use direct mail marketing in your business? Discover the 10 magical words you should use when writing direct mail here!
The direct mail innovation was a significant leap that transformed human communication throughout history. While we have made remarkable strides since, like the development of smartphones and online messaging, direct mail still remains relevant.
Today, direct mail marketing is experiencing a renaissance among businesses. Countless business owners are revisiting direct mail postcards for their lead gen endeavors.
Because there are direct mail advantages that modern-day emails and other marketing means never could achieve. Despite the relatively high direct mail cost, the pay-off can be tremendous, and the benefits unrivaled.
Of course, the content of the mail plays a considerable part in its success. That's why if you're looking into direct mail marketing, you need the right words to make your letters worth reading. In this article, Wizard of Ads™ shares the 10 magical words to use in direct mail.
Where Did Direct Mail First Appear?
Before looking at the magical direct mail marketing words, you should use, let's first have a brief history lesson. What can we learn from the first direct mail ever made?
According to Central Mailing U.K., the earliest record of direct mail came from 1,000 B.C.
On a piece of papyrus, an Egyptian landowner wrote an advertising message to offer gold to people who could return his runaway slave. Experts recovered the letter in Thebes, which has been preserved and displayed in the British museum.
Indeed, Egyptians were just some of the ones innovative enough to figure out the advertising potential of the papyrus before. Even Babylonian merchants advertised "on-print" at the time. However, they utilized stone tablets to list their products when visiting foreign towns.
In fact, catalog mailing and direct mail predate the formation of the United States (sorry, J. Peterman). Direct mail skyrocketed in popularity from papyrus and stone tablets when inventor Johannes Gutenberg invented the printing press in 1440. Pair that with another innovator, William Caxton, who printed pamphlets in Westminster Abbey in 1480.
But here's what you have to keep in mind:
Whatever material was used — papyrus, stone tablets, or print — these are merely channels, not the message. Any form of advertising will work as long as the news comes across, despite the channel utilized.
"The media is not the message. The message is the message."
— Roy H. Williams
Your message still heavily outweighs the media you select. That said, whether you use direct mail or not, you need the right words to print on the page. Otherwise, the marketing or advertising strategy will fail to hit the mark.
Wizard of Ads™ has helped countless residential home service businesses become successful in their advertising endeavors. We can do the same for you. We're the guys to hire if you're looking for advertising experts to craft your perfect direct mail campaign.
All it takes is booking a free call.
With all that's said, here are the magical words to give your direct mail marketing campaign a dose of abracadabra.
The Magical Words in the Kingdom of Direct Mails
Whichever way you use direct mail, it's an effective communication tool. However, there are magic words you can use to spruce up your direct mail marketing endeavors. I call them magical because they dramatically increase the enthusiasm, excitement, and anticipation of reading the content of your letter.
Let's look at the 10 most powerful words in direct mail.
Freebie/No Extra Charge
Do you remember how exhilarating it is to see a big "FREE" plastered on food samples at the grocery store? Or how excited do you feel when you hear about a new product that's available for free?
People have a natural affinity for free things. That is precisely why writing "freebie," "free," or "no extra charge" in your direct mail elicits the same buzz among readers.
Freebies and no extra charge are two of the most powerful words/phrases in direct mail marketing. They tap into the innate desire for people to get something for free. These words can instantly pique the interest of potential customers and encourage them to open up and read your mail.
A few direct mail examples that feature freebies or no-cost offers include coupons, discounts, special offers, or giveaways. Consider this example:
Say you have the offer to waive the HVAC diagnostic fee for your services. Capitalize on this in direct mail marketing by highlighting the FREE diagnostic fee first. Don’t add weasel words, conditions, or any other disclaimers. Just be free.
More often than not, the free aspect will keep homeowners' eyes fixated on the document and considering taking the offer.
Including freebies builds positive associations with your brand and makes customers more likely to engage with your business. It shows you're not afraid to give your customers more if they choose your solutions over the Sea of Sameness.
New and Improved
At the core of every successful direct mail marketing campaign lies the power of the phrase "new and improved." New and improved implies top-quality, freshness, updated, or better. The smell of a car straight out of a dealership. I'm trying to say that anything new and improved gets attention, like a dog with a bone.
In today's business landscape, having the term new in your marketing is more important than ever. People are bombarded daily with marketing messages from countless brands vying for their attention and dollars. As such, you want to offer customers a never-before-heard value that cuts through the noise and stands 600 ft above the competition.
That's where new and improved comes in.
You can use new for three things:
- Adding a completely new (and improved) product among your offerings
- Offering a new and improved world-class service to people that is improved over the previous service
- Highlighting an existing solution with a new and improved promotion
Whichever it is, using the phrase "new and improved" in direct mail is highly effective in capturing customers' attention and building excitement. However, "new and improved" is a double-edged sword. New implies freshness and uniqueness, so the offer must be both new, and improved. Otherwise, you're putting your company's reputation at risk.
It's best to cook up a genuinely unique offer before branding your direct mail marketing with "new and improved."
Whether you're a small business just starting or a well-established brand, picking the right words is key to direct mail marketing success. Another magical word that brings wonders to businesses is "backed."
Other businesses may have used this in their messaging: expert-backed, backed with research, etc.
With this simple word, you are signaling your customers that your product or service has proven to work and deliver results. Like every other customer, people want assurance that they are making the right choice in choosing you. "Backed" is the word that conveys confidence and trustworthiness through your messaging.
Moreover, the term implies authority — a valuable quality people look for in businesses. All buyers respect authority, especially when you substantiate it with research and studies. Using backed gives credence to your arguments and credibility that you're speaking from a position of power.
But there's a caveat.
Like the term "new and improved," you can't just go around using the "backed" without concrete proof. If so, pragmatic and educated buyers will see through your deception and discredit you. That may lead to negative word-of-mouth, which ultimately tarnishes your reputation.
The term "no obligation" is not quite as powerful as "free" but still possesses direct mail advantages.
Unlike the other magical words listed, "no obligation" speaks of your company's character. It displays that you are not after your customer's money but want them to genuinely see the value in your solutions. Allow me to explain.
For instance, imagine you have a new air-conditioning unit that allows customers to use it free for 30 days. They have no obligation regarding the installation fees and disassembly. If customers like the unit, they pay for it; otherwise, you'll remove the system with no questions asked.
The "no obligation" attached to the offer tells customers that you trust their judgment. Offering no obligation reassures buyers that you won't pressure them into buying something they don't want or need. More importantly, it builds confidence among your potential customers because you believe in the quality of your solutions. You are willing to offer them without any strings attached.
Successfully incorporating this phrase into direct mail marketing campaigns entails a hyper-focus on providing customers with high-quality products or services. You must also communicate clearly about what you are offering. This establishes trust among potential customers from the start and encourages them to take advantage of your no-obligation offers.
One of the unspoken direct mail advantages over other channels is its element of physicality. After all, opening and reading direct mail postcards is more exciting than clicking emails. You can be as crafty as you want in presenting your direct mail, like adding an element of surprise. The term "see inside" perfectly pairs with any tantalizing presentation.
The phrase "see inside" conveys a sense of exclusivity and encourages customers to look more closely at your offer. It's a subtle testament that underneath your "see inside" invitation lies a value that customers will want to read. Using it can help attract more attention from potential customers and create excitement to “discover” your offer.
To effectively leverage the power of this phrase, you need to consider two things:
- Your opening statement
- Your complete offer
Like email headlines, your opening statements should be catchy enough to pique readers' interest to look inside. Tailor your opening statement to your customers' pleasure points, pain points, and underlying felt needs to make it effective. Doing so exhibits your awareness of your customer's situation, which makes you an authoritative leader in their eyes. More importantly, it increases their anticipation to know your solution.
Finally, your complete offer must satisfy the craving they're looking for. Otherwise, all those excitement and anticipation will have been for nothing. That's why it's important to focus on creating high-quality products or services that are truly valuable. Because when your complete offer falls short of satisfying them, customers will cease to trust you.
It's no secret that people can be a little selfish, and it's not only in terms of physical appearance. As Denzel Washington once said, “people like to be first to know the latest craze or to hear the most significant buzz.”
Using announcement words in your direct mail, like "announcing" or "at last," satisfies their desire to be first. It shows that you entrusted them with complete information regarding your business. As a result, they feel good about themselves and your brand. Moreover, these terms also convey excitement and anticipation.
You can leverage your announcement by creating a sense of urgency to encourage recipients to take immediate action. This increases the likelihood of engaging with your brand and being the first few to get a hold of your offer.
Your goal in direct mail marketing is to be personal with your customers. Nothing beats being personal than writing the name of your target customer in your letter. Your customer's name is one of the most influential works in establishing a meaningful connection with them.
You immediately catch their attention by including other personalized details and addressing recipients directly. More importantly, you build credibility as a service provider that understands your audience's preferences and interests, increasing engagement and conversion rates.
Just don't make the mistake of mixing up addresses, or you lose that personal quality and may even insult the recipient.
Direct mail marketing relies heavily on the power of words and with good reason. The right combination of words can capture attention, build credibility, and engage recipients. But knowing which words work and which don't require a bit of psychology. For example, the term "simple" is always a fan favorite among recipients.
Because the human brain is hard-wired to avoid complicated things, we tend to dislike anything complex and too much for our brains to comprehend. On top of using simple language and clear messaging, mentioning the word "simple" gives off this easy-to-digest effect.
Customers feel repulsive of solutions that challenge their intellect. Whereas customers from all walks of life love simple, easy-to-use, and straightforward explanations.
Other terms that give the same flair as "simple" include:
What can we say? Humans love simplicity.
Adding to the previous point, "hassle-free" is another powerful term in direct mail marketing. For one, it conveys a sense of ease and convenience — something customers always look for in products and services. Additionally, by emphasizing this key benefit, you instantly ease the mind of your target audience.
At its core, "hassle-free" removes barriers and makes things as painless as possible. Moreover, a hassle-free experience improves the buying journey, convincing buyers to choose your solution over others. Whether it's a streamlined purchase process or easy access to customer support, brands that offer hassle-free experiences outperform their competitors. Just be sure to deliver on your promise.
The two key drivers of consumer behavior are scarcity and urgency. When you use "limited supply," you create a sense of urgency and highlight scarcity in your offer. This encourages potential customers to act quickly before the opportunity passes them by. Here's the thing: this strategy works.
Think about it.
How often have you forced yourself to buy when seeing a limited-time offer announcement in your favorite store? Exactly. A psychological trigger gets people to spend their money but only IF your offer is worth buying. Plus, this phrase communicates to your audience that there is a risk associated with waiting too long.
There's just one problem: using urgency may work once or twice, but it loses its appeal over time. As such, using a "limited-time offer" in your direct mail campaigns works by putting pressure on potential customers to make decisions fast. Unless it is actually true, and really believable, most people will think your just a flim-flam artist, however. So be warned. While inventories deplete, time keeps marching on. Sell the thing that is most believable and compelling to act. No one likes feeling pressure, let alone fake pressure.
5 Most Common Types of Direct Mail
Knowing the right words is one thing, but understanding what media you could use for direct mail campaigns is another. Here are the five most common types of direct mail that businesses use:
Postcards are a popular choice for many businesses regarding their direct mail campaigns. Whether you're looking to promote new solutions or announce a special offer, postcards are a personalized way. With their simple yet eye-catching designs, postcards are an effective way to get your message across quickly and effectively.
- Sales Letters
Letters are the traditional forms of direct mail, but they are the go-to options to look sophisticated and professional. You can use sales letters to announce important business updates or offer customers new and improved solutions. You can still make sales letters highly personalized and creative despite their formality.
- Mailing Lists
While not a form of direct mail, the success of direct mail campaign lies in the accuracy of your mailing list. Make sure to keep names and personal details up-to-date to ensure the success of your marketing and advertising.
Catalogs are the best documents to showcase your array of products and services. The success of catalogs relies on the creativity of your presentation. Aim to enthrall audiences during the viewing experience and then lure them to your exclusive offers.
Brochures and leaflets fall into self-mailers category because they don't require extensive packaging. As such, self-mailers are great options for introducing new products, services or offers to customers. Add in some colors and fancy designs, and you have an appealing document that leaves customers fixated on your mail.
While direct mail marketing seems old-school in today's business landscape, it is not simple. In order to make the most of direct mail campaigns, you must accomplish three things:
- Create a killer campaign strategy that ensures a high ROI
- Utilize the magical words that get people hooked
- Find the suitable media to deliver your message
That is not easy, but it's possible with the right people to help you out. Wizard of Ads™ can help you craft the perfect direct mail campaign strategy that gets results. Interested? Book a call with Ryan Chute of Wizard of Ads™ to learn more.
Creating real ads is the secret to building credibility and trustworthiness among your customers. Discover what real ads are all about in this article!
Advertisements are a creative sneak peek at what customers can experience when they buy your services. That's why mass personalization is essential. You want as many customers to relate to your ads as possible.
But what separates the best ads from mediocre advertisements is the use of "reality hooks." These attention-grabbing narratives connect the ads' abstract perceptual reality to objective reality.
A reality hook differentiates between "real ads" and purely fantastical anti-realist advertisements.
Reality hooks are an invaluable tool for ad writers, helping them craft compelling and engaging ads that connect with real-world audiences. These statements or concepts ground the abstract ideas introduced in your advertisements to real-life experiences. As a result, ads become more relatable and personally relevant to potential customers.
Make your ads more appealing to customers by incorporating some reality hooks.
The question is: what exactly are reality hooks, and how do they work?
Here, we’ll explore reality hooks, real ads, and four unique ways to infuse reality hooks in your advertising. Keep reading.
The Realist Narrative in Advertising
Before anything else, let me clarify something.
When I talk about real ads, I refer to advertisements that utilize reality hooks or follow realist narratives.
The realist narrative in advertising is the idea that ads are grounded in real-world experiences. In other words, they introduce a real-life feeling or portray a scenario that could occur in real life.
While advertisements are imaginative works of art, realist narratives bring ads to life as audiences may personally relate to them.
Using reality hooks is one way to incorporate this approach into your marketing strategies and advertising endeavors. Reality hooks connect the world of abstract imagination to concrete facts. For example, social proof and testimonials are reality hooks that make commercials more realistic and relatable to viewers.
Look at Health Service Executive's "I wish I were an actor" quit-smoking campaign. The 30-second ad follows the real life of Gerry Collins, an actual lung cancer-diagnosed patient due to smoking. As Gerry talks about death looming over smokers, we get a glimpse of the reality that smokers face everyday.
That's what real ads are — advertisements that utilize reality to hook you with abstract ideas.
Meanwhile, the opposites of real ads are fantastical advertisements that follow anti-realist narratives. Unlike the former, outlandish ads are often hyperbolic and create silly or improbable expectations for their target audience. Most of the time, anti-realist ads focus on providing the following:
- Comedic relief
- Unrealistic expectations
- Absurd presentations
One example of an anti-realist narrative commercial is Skittles' "Touch the Rainbow" campaign. A disturbed man named Tim is cursed with the Midas touch, wherein everything he touches turns into Skittles. That context, in itself, already screams unrealistic, but the entertainment value overshadows this aspect.
Despite their difference, both fantastical and real ads effectively get viewers' attention in their rights. However, real ads are more impactful as they resonate and emotionally connect with your target audience.
If you're looking for ad experts who can bring sprinkle reality hooks into your advertisements, look no further. Wizard of Ads™ is every residential home service business’s dream when crafting real ads that convert. We can do the same for you.
Book a call with Ryan Chute from Wizard of Ads™ to learn more.
The Real Life of Leonardo da Vinci
Let's explore reality hooks better by revisiting one of the world's greatest polymaths of all time — Leonardo da Vinci. In his Monday Morning Memo, Roy Williams did a great job explaining how da Vinci's life ties into reality hooks.
Here’s a quick test: try to Google Leonardo da Vinci. I’m certain that search engines will describe him as many different things.
Being a renowned painter, sculptor, musician, engineer, architect, inventor, cartographer, and writer are only some of his greatest feats. Looking at his track record, we realize that Leonardo da Vinci is an unrealistically talented person and a larger-than-life idea.
"Is achieving these sorts of feats even normal for a human mortal?" one might even ask.
However, everything changes when you visit or see a photograph of his place of death in Château du Clos Lucé. You realize that, like everyone else, da Vinci is just a man.
This realization grounds your originally grandiose perception of Leonardo da Vinci. He is no longer the god among men but becomes an actual human being that lives, ages, and dies.
Reality hooks used in real ads follow that same pattern.
Advertisements often promise people many great superficial things that seem unbelievable. Reality hooks make those promises and claims more realistic. Like realizing da Vinci is simply another human being, reality hooks make ads more relatable and appealing to human nature
Think of commercials as presentations of our abstract and creative imagination. Reality hooks are the points of contact that link that abstract world to the concrete fact.
These points of contact matter very much in creating real ads.
Allow me to explain.
Look at every popular collector of historical artifacts, archaeological fossils, and classical paintings. They seem odd in our eyes, but we can never question their passion.
You can get a Mona Lisa replica for several dollars, but it has no value compared to the actual painting. The reason is simple: Leonardo da Vinci personally painted, touched, handled and carried the Mona Lisa painting. In other words, he has a real point of contact with the piece of art compared to replicas.
This point of contact is what gives the art value. Similarly, the point of contact that links abstract advertisements to reality is what makes ads compelling and persuasive.
"An original work of art gives you a point of contact with the artist. A historical artifact gives you a point of contact with a specific moment in time. Understand this, and you understand the heart of every collector."— Roy H. Williams
A “Reality Hook”
Some ads and commercials live rent-free in our subconscious. They may be too entertaining and funny that we can't scratch them off our thoughts. Other ads, however, had a touch of realism that appealed to our humanity, and they evoked an emotional connection.
That's the power of reality hooks. Stories and descriptions become much more believable when you provide realistic and relatable context.
More often than not, reality hooks found in real ads make them more compelling, engaging, persuasive, and influential. They draw viewers by creating a sense of emotional connection and authenticity. By tugging the right emotional triggers, you elicit desirable responses and nudge prospects into taking your intended action.
Whether highlighting real-world testimonials, relatable scenarios, or other relevant experiences, reality hooks are essential for real ads. To create compelling ads that resonate with your audience, the secret is incorporating reality hooks into your messaging.
Below, we'll explore four unique ways to create reality hooks in your advertisements.
4 Ways to Create Reality Hooks
Creating effective ads goes beyond paying close attention to your customer's unique preferences and needs. You must also connect emotionally with your audience and persuade them to take action through a creative presentation. Incorporating reality hooks help create compelling and believable ads that resonate with your target audience.
If you're looking to craft real ads that connect with your market, consider incorporating these four strategies:
Connect to your customer's real-life experience
Every customer is different, as in they have their unique preferences and needs. It's unlikely you sell a one-size-fits-all solution that fits everyone’s needs perfectly. That is precisely the reason why businesses create buyer personas. This enables them to sell solutions and create ads focusing on the underlying felt needs of individualized personas.
The ideal buyer persona is the archetype of customers you are trying to reach. You created this persona by using various relevant information pooled together, including:
- The real-life experiences of your target market
- Their pain points (or primary sources of fears, shame, and guilt)
- Their pleasure points (or desire for identity, purpose, and adventure)
- Their value proposition equation (money, energy, and time)
- Their underlying felt needs of surviving or thriving.
All of the information above influences your average customer's buying decisions. The only difference is that each element's degree of importance varies from one customer to another. Incorporating them in your advertisement increases the likelihood of emotionally connecting to your target market.
For example, homeowners with faulty heating systems have experienced days of being heavily wrapped in sheets to survive the winter. This is a real-life experience and pain point that homeowners face.
Infusing your ads with this information allows you to connect with your customers on a deeper level. More importantly, it gives you more leverage to offer real solutions to their real problems.
The secret is highlighting the common experiences of customers within your market and then introducing your solutions. You can execute this in one of two ways:
- Your solutions are the saving grace that takes customer pain points away
- Your solutions are the bridge to realizing customers’ innermost pleasure points
Make use of highly vivid descriptors
Do you know why oftentimes readers hate film adaptations of books?
Movies often fail to capture the real essence of what was originally written. Despite the technological advancements in CGI and other cinematic editing software, films still comparatively fall short. A valid argument, but not precisely correct.
The real reason is that movies kill our imagination. Films serve the cinematic experience on a silver platter, leaving no room for people to create their own interpretations.
Our human brain is highly imaginative and playful. You need to stimulate the part of the brain that imagines in order to capture its full attention. Using specific and highly vivid descriptors helps in this regard.
With the rise of digital and online marketing, it can be easy to overlook the importance of imagination in ads. However, failing to tap into your audience's imagination limits the potential of ads to connect with customers emotionally.
By using vivid and evocative language, advertisers can conjure up mental images in the minds of their audience. Real ads use words and phrases that appeal directly to our senses of sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch. This helps people form clear pictures in their minds, making the essence of your message clearer and better understood.
Include details that add credibility
Credibility is essential for any successful ad campaign. Without credibility, it can be difficult for customers to trust your brand's claims and promises.
To build credibility, it is important to incorporate details that customers can independently confirm. These bits lend credibility to areas in your ads that are difficult to verify.
For example, testimonials are one effective way to add credibility to your advertisements.
Real-life accounts from customers and clients help validate the claims made by your brand. They give potential buyers greater confidence in your product or service. Moreover, when buyers seek real-life feedback, they can serve as social proof, further building legitimacy.
To ensure that testimonials are credible and impactful, choose real customers who have actual experience with your company. They have more to say about your brand and will be more believable than paid actors or influencers.
You may also incorporate real data into your ads and support your claims with expert opinions or reputable research studies. This will help build trust with your audience and improve the effectiveness of your marketing efforts.
Credibility and legitimacy is one primary element that separates real ads from comedic, fantastical ads. Only by ensuring that your ads feel authentic to listeners will they trust your brand and consider your solutions.
Of course, ads have limited power in pushing buyers to purchase your solution. Often, prospects will visit your website and other platforms to do more research and continue the conversation.
With that in mind, make sure to include real reviews on your website and social media platforms. Additionally, maintain a consistent and authentic voice throughout your business touchpoints. Doing so will further build your image as a credible and trustworthy service provider.
"People are quick to believe things that seem correct, even when those things are not true."— Roy H. Williams
The last thing you want is to deceive customers with your advertising. Saying plain wrong things and outright lies is sure to flush your entire operations down the drain.
As advertisers, it is crucial to use logic and reason to justify your claims about your products or services. Ensuring that your real ads are logical, you strike a chord in your customers' innate desire for accuracy and truth.
Common logical tactics such as confirmation bias and argument from authority are effective ways to spruce up your real ads. However, caution is required when using these persuasive techniques, as the wrong approach may undermine your credibility.
For instance, one way to use the argument from authority is by using influencer marketing. Popular personalities boost the relevance and credibility of your ads. However, hiring the wrong influencer can damage your reputation more than it helps.
One example I vividly recall is a tools company hiring a chic and glamorous teenage actress as their brand ambassador. No person would look at the ad and say, "this child actress uses these pliers, so I'll buy them too." In other words, it doesn't make any sense.
Your ads should be logical if you want them to follow a realist narrative. Otherwise, sensible customers will see through your deception and distrust your brand.
To create effective ads that truly engage your audience, always use logical sense as your guiding principle. With well-crafted arguments, you can create real ads that accurately explain why your product is the best choice around.
The Handy Tool for an Ad Writer
"Reality hooks are the hammer, screwdriver, pliers and duct tape of an ad writer. You can use them to fix practically anything." — Roy H. Williams
Sometimes, a dose of reality is all it takes to make your ads persuasive, compelling, believable and influential. Instead of remaining abstract ideas, using reality hooks connects the conceptual realm to real-world experiences, feelings, or beliefs.
Whether telling people about your solution's advantages or inspiring them to take action, real ads feel genuine, authentic, and direct.
Of course, that's not to say real ads are better than fantastical and purely comedic ads. Both can be powerful tools in their respective rights. The greater knowledge is knowing which of the two is more effective in your ad campaign.
That's where Wizard of Ads™ comes in.
We can help you strategize an ad campaign consistent with your brand voice and speaks directly to your target market. Moreover, we can craft the killer ads you need to put your business at the forefront of your audience's minds. Book a call.
Is your company personality lacking cohesion? Check out this article from Wizard of Ads™ to get your messaging back on track!
Regarding business, success is built on the foundation of positive communication.
Everyone plays a vital role in helping you reach your goals, from your marketing to your customer service staff.
But what happens when everyone isn’t on the same page?
Partition walls are invisible walls that separate departments, divisions, or teams within a business.
They're often built as a result of silo’d thinking, miscommunication, misinterpretations, and misunderstandings between different parts of the company.
Eventually, these walls can become entrenched in a company's culture, making communication and collaboration very difficult.
Sadly, this is a one-way ticket to financial mediocrity.
Partition walls lead to inefficient processes, decreased customer satisfaction, and a lack of iterative growth. All of which damage the bottom line.
Fortunately, an obsession to great communication will resolve the issue.
Now maybe you’re wondering why marketing should collaborate with customer service or the warehouse?
The answer is simple: to uphold your brand’s personality.
When people use the same language and share the same knowledge, the brand message remains consistent across all departments. The more consistent the shared language, the stronger the tribe. The stronger the tribe, the better the brand. This helps ensure that your customers will have a consistent experience with your company, regardless of which department they interact with.
But how can you break down the partition walls between departments and get them on the same page? And how can you identify where they are?
Depending on the size of your business, you may find that you have various partition walls between different departments. The most extensive wall, however, usually lies between your internal and external teams.
Internal Company Personality vs. External Company Personality
Before we discuss bridging the gap between departments, let me clarify that this is a normal problem.
In fact, almost every business has likely experienced some form of this disconnect at some point. This is because each department has its own set of goals, processes and procedures that drive the way they function.
Therefore, it's only natural for each team to feel isolated and, sometimes, even resistant to change. While this is a typical business concern, it remains to be a real problem that requires an immediate remedy. Otherwise, partition walls could escalate and decrease productivity and morale if not addressed quickly.
So how can we bridge the gap between departments?
By creating a single unified brand personality both internally and externally.
Internal Company Personality
Much like humans, companies can externally present themselves differently from their real, unadulterated internal company personality. We all know the internal conflict that transpires when people do not genuinely express their true selves.
Your internal company personality is created through a series of company policies and discussions. The company’s internal management develops this personality. Employees and company personnel experience this internal personality. In other words, your internal personality reflects your culture.
As we all know, your culture is your brand — it’s who you truly are. And this internal personality is the entity that communicates with your consumers directly. Sales calls, customer service interactions, and other forms of direct communication fall under this external communication umbrella.
It's important to consider how your employees interact with customers and how they represent your brand during conversations. During these interactions, your internal company personality takes center stage and reveals itself in the way you present the company. This will play an important role in how your external marketing efforts are created.
Typically, this wouldn’t be a huge problem for businesses. The only time it does is when there’s a misalignment between your internal and external company personality.
Speaking of external personality, let’s take a look at it more closely…
External Company Personality
Unlike your internal company personality, a.k.a. your true self, the external company personality is a created persona. In other words, you can develop an external facade that deviates entirely from your genuine self. As mentioned previously, this presents a huge problem.
Your marketing team typically establishes your external company personality. They are responsible for how your company communicates with consumers indirectly.
What does that mean?
For instance, indirect communication covers communication materials like your ads, website, social media accounts, and email campaigns.
Your external company personality often reflects your desired public image. However, the desired (external personality) and the reality (internal personality) don’t often see eye to eye. This leads to an undesirable misalignment with severe repercussions.
In an ideal world, your external personality should align with the identity you've already established internally.
This, however, is only sometimes seamlessly achieved.
Having two separate forms of communication, internal and external, your messages can become disjointed. In other words, what your website and advertisement say deviates from how your personnel communicates with customers. Customers may receive different messages, leading to confusion and a lack of trust.
Therefore, you must create a consistent voice across all channels.
For example, your customer service emails and phone calls should reflect the same content as your company's website. Failure to bridge this leads to mixed messages, which may leave customers confused.
To establish a unified communications strategy, this split personality needs to be mended. This includes ensuring consistency across all channels and training customer service agents to use cohesive language.
Creating a unified communication approach can help close the gap between customers’ expectations and the service they receive. You may also find that your sales and customer loyalty increase with a united front.
At Wizard of Ads™, we can help you craft a unified messaging strategy to increase customer trust and satisfaction. From direct mail to digital campaigns, our tools ensure a consistent look, feel, and message across all marketing efforts.
We understand the importance of consistent messaging, especially when it comes to building customer relationships. To learn more about how we can help, book a call with Ryan Chute of Wizard of Ads™ today!
Ad Writers and the Split Personality They Create
Now that we’ve established where the divide is, you may wonder how it happened.
Unfortunately, your ad writers may be the culprit, especially when they need insight into the sales and customer service departments. Allow me to explain.
Your ad writers make up a majority of your external communication. They’re responsible for your ads, billboards, social media content, website copy, and other forms of readable material.
However, we all know that one advertisement must gain the prowess to make a purchase decision. Therefore, when customers interact with ads first, they will want to learn more about the company through other marketing touchpoints.
During this scenario, prospects will expect the same level of communication as observed in the ads. For instance, they will visit your website to read some content or hit the inbox of your customer success agent. Any disconnect will seem off-putting, giving your company some “Business Personality Disorder” vibes.
With that said, ad writers must thoroughly understand the entire business culture and its language. Access to exclusive lines, brandable chunks, and the unique business personality will help align ads to the company’s culture. Failure to do so results in a seemingly split personality between the ad writer and your other marketing touchpoints.
To get your ad writers up to speed, consider opening the channels between each department. This will provide a better understanding of all the relevant business touchpoints and foster more effective communication as a whole.
Moreover, once the copy or ad is written, it is helpful to have the customer service department review the material. Doing so ensures that your team can continue the conversation with the customer and build upon your written message.
Once the other relevant departments continue the conversation that the ad writer started, your sales will increase significantly.
However, this means that only some sales will close immediately.
In fact, it is common knowledge that buyers usually take multiple interactions before they are ready to make a purchase.
Therefore, your sales team must also prepare to continue the conversation.
The Partition Wall Between Ad Writing and Sales Training
When it comes to your business, your sales team is one of your most vital components.
Like your ad personnel, sales professionals can move people from interest to purchase. That said, it is of utmost importance that your ad writers and sales team work in tandem.
To accomplish this, ensure your sales team is trained and updated on all the latest campaigns, offers, and promotions. Doing so allows your sales team to build on the messaging established in your ads, resulting in higher close rates.
It is also crucial that your sales team reports back on their sales activities. This can help your advertising agents refine their messaging and better target future ads to match the customers' needs.
Now, I know that this may seem like a complex process.
As an adman myself, being told to keep up with the sales team's activities can be challenging. But trust me when I say this is the key to successful lead generation and conversion.
By working together, you can ensure that your messaging stays on track and your customers receive a positive experience.
Story, Culture, and Experience According to Ray Seggern
Now that we've identified where the partition walls are located and the parties involved let's discuss how to bridge them.
Luckily, there are others on this topic.
Bestselling authors Jeffrey and Bryan Eisenberg have put together an “executive storyteller’s guide,” which contains techniques for breaking these walls. In fact, The Fortune 500 companies that were given advance copies and implemented the advice have responded with enthusiastic reviews.
The book describes how to use storytelling and data to create new opportunities, identify gaps and optimize sales and marketing.
It also offers techniques for building relationships, understanding customer needs, and creating a shared vision.
Another renowned marketer and content strategist, Ray Seggern, has also taken up the challenge of providing sound advice on this topic.
In fact, he suggests that there are three core pillars for successful marketing: Story, Culture, and Experience.
Seggern argues that you can create a powerful narrative that resonates with your customers by unifying these three pillars.
Now, you just can only lock your sales team and admin in a room once they formulate a cohesive personality.
Instead, Ray Suggern suggests the following workshop:
Here’s the basic formula governing the three pillars: identity defines activity.
Your external actions will always be influenced, or at least be affected, by your internal personality. In this context, your company culture nudges business activities into action.
Remember what we talked about regarding internal and external company personality? It always begins internally, and the external must follow through. Your culture comes first before the story and experience.
Your corporate culture will serve as the foundation when developing your narrative. Through sales training, you hone your company’s internal reality. Your sales and customer service teams typically perform this.
You can ensure that each interaction is cohesive by providing them with the proper tools and giving them clear direction. Failure to ensure that your message aligns with your culture can lead to a less-than-ideal close rate.
Furthermore, it can cause customers to perceive your brand and its values negatively. That said, your culture should be consistent and supportive of creating a positive customer experience.
Now that your identity is in the right place, your story follows. Using the culture as the basis, the story becomes the foundation of your marketing strategy. It's how you convey to customers your culture— who you are, why they should trust you, & what makes you different.
Aside from staying true to the culture, the key to powerful storytelling is to adhere to client-centric storytelling. That means emphasizing your customer’s underlying felt needs, wants, preferences, and desires. By banking on what tugs the emotional triggers of your audience, you make your message more impactful.
But how do you know what customers want? Simple. Communication.
To craft this compelling story, advertising agents must communicate with your sales team to understand the needs of your audience. Doing this allows you to create a compelling account that resonates with your audience.
Once they clearly understand your market, your advertising team can create a narrative around your product. Ultimately, the goal is to communicate a compelling brand message that your internal teams can continue.
Have you ever felt high and dry? Being promised so many great things only to receive something dissatisfactory and mediocre. Heart-breaking, isn’t it?
Well, that’s what your customers experience when you over-promise and under-deliver. This is what experience aims to address.
Experience is the culmination of your story and culture. This pillar discusses your deliverables or what customers will experience when customers choose to trust your brand. Perfecting your experience means aligning how you deliver with everything you promised in your message.
Failure to align your customer experience with your message can lead to customer confusion and dissatisfaction. In other words, you must deliver exactly what you promised. As a result, customers will become disengaged with your brand, leaving negative reviews and even defecting to competitors.
Overall, you must ensure your message, culture, and customer experience are working in harmony to create a successful sales pipeline. Only then will you build trust and credibility with customers, encouraging them to repurchase and even become full-fledged brand ambassadors.
Get Your Sales Training Aligned With Your Advertising
While it may seem overwhelming, customer experience is of utmost importance.
That said, aligning your sales training with your advertising is key to creating a consistent, engaging customer experience.
When done correctly, every department in your company will benefit. What's more, your customers will notice the difference.
Therefore, you must ensure that the advertising and sales teams are well-versed in each other's work, processes, goals and values.
By keeping everyone informed, you can create a unified approach when it comes to customer experience and sales.
Thus, everyone from your sales reps to your ad personnel will provide customers with the best service possible.
At Wizard of Ads™, our talented ad wizards specialize in creating cohesive ad campaigns that integrate with your brand.
Taking the time to understand your unique needs, we can tailor ads that resonate with your values, goals, and vision.
So when your customers interact with your brand, they’ll get the best experience possible.
Don't let the partition walls between departments keep you from creating great experiences for your customers. Book a call with Ryan Chute today to get started on your road to success!
For the past few days, one particular question has been plaguing my existence: what if there was no advertising today?That's an oddball of a query, considering I'm a marketing strategist. However, there is no more relevant time than today to dissect this inquiry. Let’s think about it. Our entire lives are riddled with radio ads, TV ads, and social media ads. In fact, data tells us that we encounter 5,000 ads on a daily basis. In other words, 21st-century humans have been desensitized to advertising that they developed technologies like a YouTube ad blocker. If not, they simply cross their fingers and chant "no advertising, please" under their breath as they watch another video. People will do everything they can to get rid of ads.
- What if a swarm of rallyists piles up outside your business holding a "no advertising sign"?
- What if you have no advertising account or operate your business without a website?
- What if people succeed in their pleas for no advertising?
Will your business still survive? There's no question that advertising and marketing are two important pillars of your business. In this article, we'll explore what the business landscape will look like without them. Furthermore, we will answer the age-old wonderment of what it takes to produce ads that people want.
What if There Is No Advertising?
Today, many businesses rely heavily on advertising in order to reach and engage potential customers. Think of marketing and advertising as a pillar that keeps a household from falling apart. In a world with no advertising, many companies would be faced with a number of challenges. From struggling to reach their target audiences to promoting their products or services, businesses would be crippled. For starters, without advertising, it would be much more difficult for businesses to build brand awareness and recognition. This is especially problematic for residential home services. Business reach would be limited to their realm of association and community. Opportunities for expanding their service area and customer reach would be significantly more challenging. Without the ability to create compelling ads, businesses won't get their messages out and stand 600 ft above competitors. Additionally, without advertising, competing based on price and quality will also be impossible. Ultimately, consumers wouldn't have any way of knowing about the options available in the market. It's sort of a double-edged sword — businesses and consumers will struggle in their own respective ways. However, it's a heavier burden on the commerce side. Drenching in my silent reverie, I realized that a no-advertising world is not just hard to imagine, it's actually impossible. Humans are social beings, and word-of-mouth marketing operates among social relationships. That, in itself, is a type of advertising which defeats the purpose of my existential query. As I dug deeper into my thoughts, I understood that imagining a world with no advertising is a problematic premise. After all, the motivation behind this inquiry is people becoming desensitized from the thousands of ads they encounter. Therefore, it's not the fault of advertising per se — the real culprit are the advertisements. Because why are some ads successful and others are not?That said, the better question to ask is: "how can I produce ads that people actually want to see?"People want no advertising because the majority of ads suck. If you want killer advertisements that will make people want to know more about your business, I'm your assassin. Book a call with Ryan Chute of Wizard of Ads™, and let's build your residential home service business through advertising.
Marketing Without Media
"It is your choice of message that targets the customer, not your choice of media. There are rare exceptions, of course. But not many."
—Roy H. Williams
I have always been a firm believer that it's your message that matters in advertising, not the media. As long as your message is on point, regardless of which channel you use to convey it, the ad will work. Whether that's radio ads or print ads, it will work as long as the message connects with your customers. However, that is not always the case, and I can name two scenarios when advertising was limited by the media. First, who remembers the ridiculous fiasco of 2004's Intellectual Property Protection bill?In 2004, people found a way to achieve no advertising through PVRs or personal video recorders like TiVo. This technology became a huge threat to advertisers at the time. Ad agencies were worried that ads would become irrelevant as people skipped through them during recorded streams. Funny enough, the bill contained a provision to criminalize fast-forwarding through commercials. But why exactly do people do this?It's important to understand the core motivation behind people's actions before jumping to conclusions. First and foremost, it's the game or shows that people are after, not the ads. Second, if ads are one bit interesting, people would probably watch them. The problem is that companies threatened to stop buying TV spots if the issue persisted, and PVRs died thereafter. Second, just this year, TV ad spend significantly declined. We observed the last plummet in TV ads spent in July 2019 when COVID immobilized the market. However, that same level of decline was observed three years later during the same month (July 2022). Why? Simple. Because there was no Winter Olympics and NBA finals in July 2022. That means no one is actively watching TV— what good then does it do businesses to spend on commercial spots? What do these two scenarios tell us?First, you need good advertisements to captivate people and keep them glued to the screen. Second, you have to meet people where they already are, otherwise, ads fall on deaf ears. Converging these ideas, the perfect ad is a combination of relevant copy and effective media. Disregard one or the other, and expect low engagement, ROI and more people begging for no advertising.(P. S. Can you imagine advertising in the Yellow Pages in 2022? Again, effective media.)
The Future of Advertising
There is no world without advertising, that much truth is clear as day based on our earlier conversations. Looking ahead, advertising will remain as relevant in the future, if not more, as it is today. However, with the increasing importance of advertising, so will people develop technologies to get rid of ads. Change is the only thing that is constant in this world— that's true. From the marketing standpoint, ads have been going downhill ever since, and there is no way to stop them. You could, however, go against the tide and better yourself from the Sea of Sameness. Here's what Roy H. Williams perceives for the future, which I wholeheartedly agree on:
1. New technologies will make it harder for companies to reach people with their messaging.
You have Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, and a long list of platforms that streamline the advertising process. But having more channels that enable businesses to advertise also amplifies the noise. More noise means more bullshit, and this translates to more people embracing the no advertising ideal. For your business, this means you'll need more effort to break through the pandemonium.
2. The cost of advertising will skyrocket.
Since people-reached and ROI through advertising will decline, the cost of advertising will skyrocket. That means more money for us and less for you, and that's not fair. At that time, well-constructed ad campaigns and tastefully written ads will be more valuable than ever before.
3. As a result, more customers will join the "no advertising" movement.
It's all a domino effect that falls in a circular motion. In the future, people will get sick of traditional advertising words and empty unsubstantiated promises.
With how things are, the future of advertising is grave for businesses that don't leverage impeccable ads today. While modern technology has given companies the power to reach millions, they waste it with poor advertising. If you truly want to etch your brand in your customer's procedural memory, invest in creating good ads.The key is to craft relevant and impactful messages delivered repeatedly through effective channels. We can do these for you.
Can Businesses Survive Without Advertising?
No advertising? Never. Unless you're satisfied with being a brick-and-mortar store having limited reach. For residential home services that want to make it to the big leagues, advertising matters — the good kind. If you're looking for advertising experts who can elevate your business from obscurity, that's us. For many years, Wizard of Ads™ has helped residential home service companies scale through unrivaled advertising campaigns and tasteful advertisements. We can do the same for your business. The question is: are you up for it? If yes, book a call.
Questions? We’ve got answers.
Wizard of Ads® for Contractors work with healthy and growing Residential Home Service Contractors hungry to grow by multiples, like you.
You are ready, willing, and able to grow your business. You are open to change and are seeking a distinctive angle of approach to gain the time and attention of a too-busy public.
You know that lasting relationships take time, patience, and good energy to nurture and cultivate. We carefully enter into every arrangement with the intention of working with you for as long as you own your business. You prefer lasting partnerships.
You are already a solid operator. You have successfully grown your business and appreciate the impact the right brand story will have to get to the next level in your operation. You know a strong relational message takes time to gain momentum, but it’s worth the one-time short-term discomfort for the long-term gains.
Marketing cannot fix a failing business.
We accelerate what’s already happening in a business. If your business is on the rocks, marketing will only speed up the inevitable.
You’re focused on lasting change that leads to exponential, profitable growth, not just sales at any cost. Intuitively, you know that communication that enhances every element of your customer's experience and your employee's culture is the key to your success.
Traditional marketing agencies are designed to capture the greatest amount of revenue from a client, regardless of results. Every last item is billed and expensed to the client. Typical agency fees can represent a whopping 55% of the entire advertising budget. That means a $5 million dollar advertising budget, you would spend $2.75 million on agency fees.
Think of Wizard of Ads® for Contractors as the Anti-Agency.
Our income is not tied to your advertising budget. Our income is exclusively tied to your growth. Our goal is to maximize your advertising impact with the lowest reasonable spend. This allows you to spend only what is necessary or to put extra horsepower into aggressively growing in your market.
The genius of this model is that it perfectly aligns our motivations as true partners for exponential profitable growth without the pain of being unaffordable. Ultimately, we are confident in taking the risk of being underpaid in the first few years because we know the results always speak for themselves.
Next, we do not accept commissions, referral fees, kickbacks, or other compensation from any service providers we recommend or engage for production work. Most agencies do. This includes the 15% agency commission for media buying. This approach is considerably different from the compensation plan employed by most advertising agencies, as it eliminates any potential conflicts of interest and allows us to focus our entire attention on helping you grow your business profitably as a true partner. For example, a $500,000 annual media buy would involve a $75,000 commission that we would have removed directly from your media providers' invoices.
This is the perfect pricing model for Residential Home Services.
By tying ourselves to gross revenue, we only have one motivation. Your motivation. We have no motivation to convince you to spend more money on marketing than what is necessary, and since we are a variable expense to sales, we NEVER become too expensive to have us on your team.
In almost every case, we end up lowering the amount of money you spend. We will stay within your planned marketing budget, including your media spend, production, and our Annual Fee. Add on the fact that you get any and all commissions back for media buys and various services provided by outside providers, and you will actually save money having us on your team.
Don’t forget, we have the largest buying power in North America for media buying, meaning for every dollar you spend buying media, we only spend 27 cents on average. This stretches your reach, impact, and frequency in a way no other agency (or yourself) can achieve on your own, saving you hundreds of thousands of dollars, eventually millions, every single year.
Clients who heed our advice and embrace our Marketing Strategy quickly add $1 million in incremental revenue to their business, making your investment a smart bet and a bit of a no-brainer.
There is no longer any guesswork, hope, or fear that our marketing strategies are going to work. If our client’s are able to abandon any limiting beliefs about marketing, deliver operational excellence, and play the long game, our marketing strategy will accelerate their profitable growth.
Wizard of Ads® for Contractors pricing model is based solely on the topline revenue of your company. It consists of an Upfront Fee and an Annual Fee. These fees are inclusive of scheduled travel, services, and all other expenditures as outlined in the Consulting Agreement.
The Upfront Fee covers the intensive Uncovery Process, the first year’s Media Buy, the Creative Process, and the Market Research while the Annual Fee goes toward implementation, ongoing creative and consulting, and next year's media buy. You get a team of 3.5 people, with direct access to a top tier Creative Lead and Media Buyer, and on-demand access to me as your Master Strategist. You will also have a full-time Account Manager keeping everything on track.
While the upfront does have an initial pinch, it is easy to amortize the investment over the many years we will be working together to grow your business. Wizard of Ads® retain clients for 10 years, on average. The sale of the business is the number one reason for termination. We actively terminate the bottom 1% of clients who are unwilling or unable to follow our strategies.
Wizard of Ads® for Contractors believes that all rewards should be directly correlated to the success of our clients. This means that the Wizard of Ads® for Contractors only receives a raise when the company achieves growth. For example, if your gross sales for the year have increased by 25%, the Annual Fee you pay us in the following year will also be increased by 25%. Likewise, if your gross sales decrease, our Annual Fee will decrease by the same percentage during the following year.
This is an exceptionally easy and fair way to track and reward success. This model was developed by Wizard of Ads® over 35 years ago and has served us well because it serves our clients well.
As a rule of thumb, we take the risk of working for considerably less than our actual value in the first few years as we help accelerate growth. This means you need to be willing to pay us exceptionally well when you start doing even better.
There are four key revenue stages for engagement with the Wizard of Ads® for Contractors.
- Under $3.6 million in revenue
- Between $3.6 and $10 million in revenue
- Between $10 and $20 million in revenue
- Over $20 million in revenue
Under $3.6 million in revenue is an investment in your brand. This will serve you well in establishing your brand story early on and help you with your name, logo, and truck wrap design. It's easier to create pictures from a story than it is to make a story based on pre-drawn pictures. You'll be glad you did. Everyone on a fast path to growth is.
Most clients start with Wizard of Ads® for Contractors between $3.6 and $10 million in revenue. They have often seen a natural ceiling with their leads for demand service and are looking for ways to push past the ceiling. This can only be done with a properly executed brand strategy, specifically in mass media with a sticky story.
Between $10 and $20 million in revenue, Wizard of Ads® for Contractors has some natural economies of scale. This is a sweet spot where Wizard of Ads® for Contractors can offer some added value in getting the ball rolling.
Over $20 million in revenue is actually the lowest cost point of entry as a percentage of revenue, but not the cheapest time to start with the Wizard of Ads® for Contractors. Leveraging all economies of scale aside, we have been left out of the upside along the way, so engaging when over $20 million in revenue means we have to mend a lot of fences damaged along the way. This is also where clients see significant savings in their media buys and production costs.
There are also three market sizes to consider.
- Primary Markets are the top 50 cities in America.
- Secondary Markets are the smaller cities in America.
- Tertiary Markets are the more rural trade areas in America.
When considering an engagement with The Wizard of Ads® for Contractors, consider what size market you are in. For example, a $3.6 million company in a Primary Market will struggle to get the necessary reach needed to make a splash. You either have to be more patient than a larger company or spend more money to accelerate your reach.
Alternatively, a $5 million company in a Secondary Market will look like a pretty darn big fish in a medium-sized pond.
A $20 Million company in a Primary Market will feel like a $50 million company using our strategies to potential customers.
The key to remember is that the earlier you start with the Wizard of Ads® for Contractors, the lower the investment to get started. As they say, the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is today.
The Wizard of Ads® for Contractors Creative Lead will create the ad copy, cast the voice actors, source the production house, direct the performance, pick the music bed, manage all the edits, and provide you with the completed ad for final approval before sending to air on your behalf. This is included in our fees.
You pay for the production house, actors, royalty-free music, and jingles directly to avoid any potential for markups, commissions, or management fees.
We have many friends in the industry that give our clients good deals due to the large volume of work we provide them. We will introduce you to them.
In approximately three months of activation, we’ll just be getting live on air. In six months (3 months on air), you’ll be getting anecdotal feedback from people that you are being heard, but there will be no direct line to revenue.
After 6 months on the air, you’ll think you made the biggest mistake of your life signing up for this branding nonsense. After 9 months on the air (12 months in) you’ll see the light at the end of the tunnel.
At 12 full months on the air, you’ll know why you did this branding thing. Two years from now, we'll be clinking champagne flutes as you wonder why you didn’t do this sooner.
The general guideline is 70-120 days, depending on the level of production needed and if there is a name change to your business.
This includes an onsite visit, a deep dive into research, and getting things created, negotiated, approved, produced, and live on the air.
- Uncovery - 15-30 days based on travel. 1-2 days onsite.
- Research - 30-60 days based on the scope of work.
- Creative and Media Buy Process - 45 to 60 days
- Offline Production - 15 days for radio. 30 - 60 days for television.
- Online Production (if switching) - 60 days
This means planning for roughly 90 to 120 days in the proper development and production of a completely unique Marketing Strategy before anything hits the airwaves.
Creatively, yes. During the term of this Agreement, all Creative Partners assigned to your Account shall not engage, directly or indirectly, as an employee, officer, manager, partner, manager, consultant, agent, owner, or in any other capacity, in any competition of the client, including any company engaged in marketing consulting.
For clarity, the Creative Partner is defined as the individual Wizard of Ads® Partners who is responsible for creating your creative strategy and ongoing creative copy. Competition is defined as companies that engage in the same industry and business units (e.g., HVAC, Plumbing, etc.) as you. The market area is defined as the area where the marketing message naturally reaches through DMA or 60 miles from the city center of the client's service area(s).
Naturally, we exclude any potential future competition in markets where you are not currently active at the date of signing.
We do not limit Media Buyers in any market. Media Buyers get better deals for larger volumes, making it beneficial for the client to have the Media Buyer available to do as many buys as possible to secure the best deals on the client’s behalf.
In rare circumstances, Wizard of Ads® for Contractors will provide specific digital marketing solutions. Wizard of Ads® has very specific Partners that provide digital services that serve Residential Home Services effectively. Under no circumstances will digital marketing services be offered without Wizard of Ads® for Contractors' core solution.
It is most likely that Wizard of Ads® for Contractors will work with your existing digital partners and suppliers. If you do not have a reliable digital provider, we would be happy to introduce you to a number of great providers that play nice with Wizards.
Wizard of Ads® for Contractors can assist you in getting a jingle for your business. Like any other tactical element of a marketing strategy, we do not produce a jingle for the sake of a jingle.
If you do not have a story or a strategic reason to have a jingle...or an ad campaign to tie it to, do not waste your hard-earned money on a jingle. You are wasting your time and money.
When you do build a single unified marketing strategy that incorporates a jingle for a specific (often scientific) reason, we have a Jingle Wizard who has studied the art and science of jingle design.
He will score you an original, royalty-free jingle, including professional singers, musicians, and producers. He will not knock off a generic jingle from a publicly available music bed that sounds like everyone else's jingle.
Your jingle will serve a very specific reason and produce a very specific result. Have you guessed how much we love jingles yet?
Wizard of Ads® for Contractors owns your copyright for two very specific reasons. We also provide a fair use clause in all contracts to ensure you are in no way limited to the access of your creative works, whether you are working with us or not.
The first reason we own your copyright is to ensure that we do not have to go up against our own creative works in other markets we serve. This means you are not allowed to lend, give, borrow, tweak, rent, lease, or sell your creative works to any other company at any time.
The second reason we own your copyright is that we can establish a one-time value for your creative works in the event that someone steals the content. Upon selling you the copyrights, you can go after the perpetrator for theft and make a considerable bounty in a slam dunk case.
Here is how Wizard of Ads® word the fair use of your copyright for as long as your business is in operation:
All writing and/or marketing materials we create for you are not works-for-hire. Wizard of Ads® for Contractors hereby irrevocably grants you, and your successors in interest, the non-exclusive, royalty-free, non-transferable, and worldwide right to use the Works in connection with the marketing of your business pursuant to the Marketing Strategy for so long as your business is operational.
There are a number of interesting ways to measure results. Some people like to get unique identifying telephone numbers, or create branded URLs that redirect to landing pages or the website. However, much of this is a waste of time and energy as it never tells the true story of the brand journey and how it affected the decision-making process.
Other indicators of brand effectiveness include tracking new customers, reactivated customers, or running a brand equity survey to get a sense of your share of mind. Digitally you will see direct search increase, which cannot be affected by anything digital, as well as branded keyword inquiries increase. You’ll, of course, need to get your digital people to add these to your campaigns if you hope to see an increase in conversions.
Wizard of Ads® for Contractors tracks the simplest of indicators. Top line revenue. When your branding takes effect, and the company responds in kind from the phone call or form fill-on, top-line revenue will increase. Efficacy is plotted on a T12, and total lead volume from all sources is tracked.
- Quality relationships take time. Branding is a long-term strategy. That’s why most contractors do it wrong, or not at all. There is always a lag between the start of the new campaign and the time it takes your customers to connect the dots. You MUST BE READY, WILLING, AND ABLE to endure this lag period. In our experience, the lag is typically 6 to 9 months, depending on how competitive the marketplace is, your company’s reputation, your budget in relation to reach, and the eight uncontrollable environmental factors. During this time, we will be helping you implement a transition plan to ease the pain. The good news is that this lag only happens once.
- Decisions by Committee. We completely reject the notion of decisions by committee. We work with a single, courageous decision-maker. We welcome decision influencers, but we only look to the Owner for the final decision. All decision-makers and influencers must be involved in the Uncovery and Marketing Strategy Presentation if they want to offer input in the future. It is critical that we have a 100% fully approved plan that can be defended and championed by all leaders in the organization.
- Proven Strategy. That means we are not the low-cost provider. With nearly 200 home service clients and a book of strategic devices, tools, and tactics, this isn’t a guessing game for us. We know what to do to make your externally triggered grudge purchase appealing to your potential buyers. If you can deliver the goods, we can continue building relationships. If you are uncomfortable with the idea that you are paying us less now so that you can pay us considerably more once revenues allow, please do not commit. We intend to be your true partners, in sickness and in health...so long as you own your business.
- Automatic Payments. Everything is on automatic payments. If you struggle with managing cash flow, figure that out in your business first. We accept all major credit cards and ACH payments.
- We Cause Problems. If you don’t have a capacity issue now, I promise you will in about 9 months. Let’s deal with recruitment out of the gate as part of your comprehensive marketing strategy.
- We Own the Copyrights. All writing and/or marketing materials we create for you are not works-for-hire. We irrevocably grant you, and your successors in interest, the non-exclusive, royalty-free, non-transferable, and worldwide right to use the Works in connection with the marketing of your business pursuant to the Marketing Strategy for so long as your business is operational.
- Brand Building. We will be steering you to limit the use of discounts, rebates, coupons, and sales to attract clients. We know this feels counterintuitive to many, and we will clarify our reasoning. Rest assured, we have considerable experience in creating similar offers that are not damaging to your profitability, your brand’s integrity, and your preferable long-term client relations.
- Creative Authority. We must have creative authority over the words. You can accept copy as written or reject it outright, but you cannot modify the words yourself. If you do not like something as written, we are happy to discuss it and make the necessary change to maintain the integrity and intention of the words chosen. Alternatively, we will scrap the concept and create new copy that you are happy to get behind 100%.
- Proprietary Algorithm. The media buy must be structured in a very specific way, including running a full 52-week schedule. It is based on brain chemistry, not P&Ls. Once we have committed to the buy, it’s important to avoid adjustments unless they are calculated additions.
- Knucklehead Factor. You should expect knuckleheads. For example, when you start running ads that are certain to get attention, you need the courage to continue running those ads, even when you receive complaints. We celebrate complaints. It means we’ve made people feel.
- Digital Weasels. In about three months from the time your advertising campaign hits the airways, your digital marketers will show you a marked increase in direct and organic traffic. Some Digital Marketers will mistakenly claim this success as their own. Done properly, you can continue to spend less and less on digital lead generation by increasing your branded keyword online presence.
- Annual Marketing Meetings. Travel permitting, we prefer to hold Annual Marketing Meetings (AMMs) outside your city. Years of experience have taught us that we get better results when decision-makers are outside their sphere of influence, away from the day-to-day distractions of the office.
Ready to transform your world?