Many entrepreneurs, and often women in particular, make the mistake of not telling people what action to take in their ads. It’s an attempt at being nice (by not being bossy), but when it comes to advertising, it pays to be direct. Here are four tips for creating strong, compelling ads.
Oops! There it was again. A well-written ad with an eye-catching headline, nice photo, a decent bullet list of benefits…and a big, fat hole where the compelling offer should have been.
Instead of telling the reader exactly what action to take, the business blandly listed only a phone number and website address.
What a waste!
But, print ads aren’t the only areas where I see business owners backing away from doing the obvious-that is, giving the reader or listener a compelling reason to respond now, not tomorrow. Another place where my “marketing coach eyes” catch business owners omitting a compelling offer is in their internet marketing.
Women entrepreneurs, in particular, are guilty of this mistake. Why? Because women mistakenly think they’re being “nice” by not telling someone what to do.
Come on, ladies! We know we’re capable of being in charge, giving directions, and even acting downright bossy. We do it all the time running our households. So, let’s not pretend we don’t know how to step up powerfully in the same way when it comes to telling our prospective clients to get themselves in gear and hire us!
Here are four simple tips for creating your compelling offer:
Internet Marketing Tip #1: Make the offer appealing.
Most offers are bland. A strong offer includes a compelling reason for your listener or reader to act now. For example, in an email promoting your program or product, swap out the plain vanilla “Click here to learn more” for “Why wait when you can get started right away? Get your free report instantly when you click here now!”
Internet Marketing Tip #2: Inject enthusiasm.
Don’t let your fear of sounding cheesy get in the way of creating excitement. The trick for women entrepreneurs is to stay ultra-focused on benefits: What happens for your reader when they DO take action? Conversely, what pitfall awaits them if they hesitate?
Internet Marketing Tip #3: Create urgency.
Don’t groan at the thought that this is a coy trick. It’s not. Urgency works because people are crazy-busy, and it’s only the fact that they’re about to lose out on an opportunity that gets their attention. People also put off making decisions. By giving them a cut-off date you’re helping them discover clearly what they want (which this marketing coach believes is a valuable service).
Internet Marketing Tip #4: Give yourself permission to nag.
People love a sense of drama! My favorite strategy is the “countdown to cut-off” tactic. You’re using your cut-off date as the dramatic ending. Work backwards from your cut-off date (or cut-off quantity) and use a daily sequence of emails, reminder calls and good old- fashioned nagging to let folks know there are only five days left, four days left, 48 hours, 24 hours, “last chance” and “expires at midnight” opportunities to make a move.
Is this too hard sell? Not at all IF you’re authentic in how you write your campaign, use a sense of humor or personal warmth, and stay focused on WHY your product or service is going to really help them solve their problems.
Remember, women entrepreneurs, you’re in business to help people and you can only help them when you get their attention.