Chapter 1

Advertising Strategy
Compiled by: Dr. Vikas Dogra
An advertising strategy is a campaign developed to communicate ideas about products and services to potential consumers in the hopes of convincing them to buy those products and services. This strategy, when built in a rational and intelligent manner, will reflect other business considerations (overall budget, brand recognition efforts) and objectives (public image enhancement, market share growth) as well. As Portable MBA in Marketing authors Alexander Hiam and Charles D. Schewe stated, a business's advertising strategy "determines the character of the company's public face." Even though a small business has limited capital and is unable to devote as much money to advertising as a large corporation, it can still develop a highly effective advertising campaign. The key is creative and flexible planning, based on an indepth knowledge of the target consumer and the avenues that can be utilized to reach that consumer.

1.1 Role and relevance of advertising strategy
Today, most advertising strategies focus on achieving three general goals, as the Small Business Administration indicated in Advertising Your Business: 1) promote awareness of a business and its product or services; 2) stimulate sales directly and "attract competitors' customers"; and 3) establish or modify a business' image. In other words, advertising seeks to inform , persuade , and remind the consumer. With these aims in mind, most businesses follow a general process which ties advertising into the other promotional efforts and overall marketing objectives of the business. Advertising strategy achieves its goals in various stages. As a business begins, one of the major goals of advertising must be to generate awareness of the business and its products. Once the business' reputation is established and its products are positioned within the market, the amount of resources used for advertising will decrease as the consumer develops a kind of loyalty to the product. Ideally, this established and ever growing consumer base will eventually aid the company in its efforts to carry their advertising message out into the market, both through its purchasing actions and its testimonials on behalf of the product or service. Essential to this rather abstract process is the development of a "positioning statement," as defined by Gerald E. Hills in "Marketing Option and Marketing" in The Portable MBA in Entrepreneurship : "A 'positioning statement' explains how a company's product (or service) is differentiated from those of key competitors." With this statement, the business owner turns intellectual objectives into concrete plans. In addition, this statement acts as the foundation for the development of a selling proposal, which is composed of the elements that will make up the advertising message's "copy platform." This platform delineates the images, copy, and art work that the business owner believes will sell the product. With these concrete objectives, the following elements of the advertising strategy need to be considered: target audience, product concep communication media, and advertising message. t, These elements are at the core of an advertising strategy, and are often referred to as the "creative mix." Again, what most advertisers stress from the beginning is clear planning and flexibility. And key to these aims is creativity, and the ability to adapt to new market trends. A rigid advertising strategy often leads to a loss of market share. Therefore, the core elements of the advertising strategy need to mix in a way that allows the message to envelope the target consumer, providing ample opportunity for this consumer to become acquainted with the advertising message.

Outdoor advertising Billboards. the consumer must be able to believe in the product's representation. and hobbies." which is a combination of the marketing objectives. science. but. and the forces acting upon any purchasing decision. Whether couched in presentations that emphasize sex. the type of vendors and services the consumer currently uses. an advertiser needs to schedule the broadcasting of that advertising. 3. art. and the media and vehicles have been chosen. Product Concept: The product concept grows out of the guidelines established in the "positioning statement. it is important to remember that no product is just itself. the characteristics of the target consumer need to be considered as an advertiser decides what media to use. advertisements on public transportation (cabs. as Courtland L. Video Promotional videos. Behaviors When considering the consumers' behavior an advertiser needs to examine the consumers' awareness of the business and its competition. Direct mail. etc. and 2) most likely to reach the target audience. the a dvertising message can be directed at a very concrete audience to achieve very specific goals. income. it is important to define three general criteria in relation to that consumer. After deciding on the medium that is 1) financially in reach. as discussed by the Small Business Administration: 1. buses). week. as defined by Hills. Audio FM and AM radio. and friends." Advertising Message: An advertising message is guided by the "advertising or copy platform. Demographics Age. and thus how the target consumer will receive that product. At this point. by day. 2.Target Consumer: The target consumer is a complex combination of persons. Communication Media: The communication media is the means by which the advertising message is transmitted to the consumer." How the product is positioned within the market will dictate the kind of values the product represents. Therefore. infomercials. The types of media categories from which advertisers can choose include the following: Print Primarily newspapers (both weekly and daily) and magazines. World Wide Web. This combination is best realized after the target consumer has been analyzed. In order to identify the target consumer. spouse. and the types of appeals that are likely to convince the consumer to give the advertiser's product or service a chance. Bovee and William F. and production values. a "bundle of values" that the consumer needs to be able to identify with. masculinity. or femininity. It includes the person who ultimately buys the product. copy. such as children. the product concept has been established. Needs and Desires Here an advertiser must determine the consumer needs both in practical terms and in terms of self-image. romance. In addition to marketing objectives and budgetary restraints. and those who influence product purchases. gender. as well as those who decide what product will be bought (but don't physically buy it). humor. is "the combination of specific times (for example. and the kind of pitch/message that will convince the consumer that the advertiser's services or products can fulfill those needs. month) when advertisements are inserted into media vehicles and delivered to target audiences. Hiam and Schewe listed three major areas that an advertiser should consider when endeavoring to develop an effective "advertising platform": What are the product's unique features? How do consumers evaluate the product? What is likely to persuade them to purchase the product? . ethnicity. Arens stated in Contemporary Advertising. The media schedule. job.

but it is also easy to understand. including blank space. Art Work and Layout: Small business owners also need to consider the visual rhetoric of the advertisement. "Two-syllable phrases like 'free book. effective headings allow the reader to get a sense of the advertisement's central theme without having to read much of the copy. it is usually best to put together an advertising budget early in the advertising process. Most industry experts recommend that advertisers use short paragra phs. When doing this a business owner needs to follow a few important guidelines. and therefore need to create their own advertising pieces. Advertising Budget: The advertising budget can be written before or after a business owner has developed the advertising strategy. But as Hiam and Schewe caution." When writing the copy. an advertisement has to capture the reader's attention quickly. emphasizing major attributes of the business's products or services in the process. lists. understand. As Jerry Fisher observed in Entrepreneur. For small businesses. which simply means that the entire advertisement. All the methods listed are progressive ones that look to perpetuate growth: Percentage of future or past sales . However. By that I mean they are so easy for the brain to interpret as a whole thought that they're 'read' in an eye blink rather than as linear verbiage. if a business has the resources available. or unravel the message. When to make a budget decision depends on the importance of advertising and the resources available to the business. An advertisement that has "50% Off" in bold black letters is not just easy to read. Remember. direct language (saying exactly what you mean in a positive. Copy: When composing advertising copy it is crucial to remember that the primary aim is to communicate information about the business and its products and services. If. and catchy illustrations and graphics to break up and supplement the text and make the document both visually inviting and easy to understand. Many companies utilize a theme or a slogan as the centerpiece of such efforts. The following approaches are the most common methods of developing an effective budget. So for an advertiser trying to get attention in a world awash in advertising images. many small businesses don't have the up-front capital to hire such an agency. a business know that they s only have a certain amount of money for advertising then the budget will tend to dictate what advertising is developed and what the overall marketing objectives will be.How do competitors rank in the eyes of the consumer? Are there any weaknesses in their positions? What are their strengths? Most business consultants recommend employing an advertising agency to create the art work and write the copy. should have meaning and logic. while "something must be used to animate the theme care must be taken not to lose the underlying message in the pursuit of memorable advertising." The copy content needs to be clearly written.' 'fast help. and act upon. it makes sense to try this message-in-an-eye-blink route to the public consciousness be it for a sales slogan or even a product name. for instance. following conventional grammatical guidelines. rather than negative manner) has been shown to be the most effective. ensuring that the advertising fits the overall marketing objectives. On the other hand. The "selling proposal " can act as a blueprint here. Of course.' and 'lose weight' are the kind of advertising messages that don't need to be read to be effective. The theory here is that the less the audience has to interpret. the advertising strategy can be developed to meet predetermined marketing objectives. the easier the message will be to read.

These small business owners do not seem to recognize that myriad factors can influence a business's fortunes (regional economic straits. such as providing advertising kits to help the retailer sell the product. The small business owner who does not bother to adequately analyze his or her advertising efforts runs the danger of throwing away a perfectly good advertising strategy (or retaining a dreadful one) if he or she is unable to determine whether business upturns or downturns are due to advertising or some other factor. arrival of new competition. This relationship is achieved by offering inducements. relying on a general sense of company health when determining whether to continue. sometimes called the pull method. create. and developing trade promotions. and place advertising so that it will meet established objectives better than most small businesses can do on their own. But for a small business. Other inexpensive options.Competitive approach Market share All available funds The task or objective approach The easiest approach and thus the one that is most often used is the percentage of future or past sales method. the opinions of whom can be gathered in several ways. targets end -users (consumers). seasonal buying fluctuations. in order to ensure growth. Pull Method The aim of the pull method is to convince the target consumer to try. they simply throw a campaign out there and hope for the best. even small businesses can take steps to measure the effectiveness of their a dvertising strategies. promote the advertiser's product. An agency has professionals who can organize. The only way to know with any accuracy how your advertising strategy is working is to ask the consumer. Analyzing Advertising Results: Many small businesses are distressingly lax in taking steps to monitor whether their advertising efforts are having the desired effect. or make adjustments to advertising campaigns. offering incentives to carry stock. many businesses employ some hybrid of the two when putting together their advertising strategy. but of course the expense associated with soliciting such . and ultimately repurchase the product.). Push Method The aim of the push method is to convince retailers. Although many of the tracking alternatives are quite specialized. The second option. requiring either a large budget or extensive advertising research expertise. Most industry experts recommend basing spending on anticipated sales. where survival may be a bigger concern than growth. Instead. can also prove helpful in determining the effectiveness of an advertising campaign. The direct response survey is one of the most accurate means of measuring the effectiveness of a company's advertising for the simple reason that it measures actual responses to a business's advertisements. basing the advertising budget on past sales is often a more sensible approach to take. Of course. purchase. This process is achieved by directly appealing to the target consumer with coupons. Advertising Agencies: The decision whether or not to use an advertising agency depends both on a company's advertising strategy and its financial resources. who are expected to ask retailers for the product and thus help "pull" it through the channel of distribution. The first of these. terminate. salesperso or dealers to carry and ns. in-store displays. etc. is a stance wherein an advertiser targets retail establishments in order to establish or broaden a market presence. such as use of redeemable coupons. Methods of Advertising: Small business owners can choose from two opposite philosophies when preparing their advertising strategy. sometimes called the push method. and sweepstakes.

An advertising agency can also help track and analyze the effectiveness of the advertising. What is the tagline of your company? What message does your tagline send to your prospects? .2 (a) SWOT Analysis The first step in the development of your communications strategy is a SWOT analysis.2 (b) Define the Brand This is the first step in the process of developing your brand strategy. agencies are useful when a business is planning a broad advertising campaign that will require a large amount of resources. Whereas. What does your company specializes in? 5.2 Advertising Strategy Planning Process An advertising strategy should support the marketing plan. The "What to do" part of your ad strategy should follow logically from the "What's going on" part. So normally they have to figure things out for themselves. and the company. Properly done.talent is often prohibitive for smaller companies. Assessment means to understand what's going on in the market. 1. What are the core values of your products and services? What are the core valu of your es company? 3. In the real world an ad agency is rarely handed a marketing or business plan. These are some of the components of the advertising strategy planning process: 1. action implies what should your client do about the most significant opportunities or problems presented by the situation. consumer attitudes). What is the mission of your company? 4. what should you do with the brand. the web site. Still. length of time that the principals have been with the agency. which in turn supports the company business plan. 1. and what's the future looking like (with the product. the current situation. what are the major trends in the market. Some criteria to consider when choosing an agency include size of the agency. It ll help you figure out the "What's going on" part. some small. with direct marketing. Your brand definition will serve as your measuring stick in evaluating any and all marketing materials and strategies. full color picture of the market. competitors.and mid-sized businesses have found that agencies can be helpful in shaping and monitoring advertising strategies. Because of their resources and expertise. a Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities and Threats assessment presents a 360 degree. By defining who your brand is you create the foundation for all other components to build on. Who is your target market? Who do your products and services attract? 6. 1. size of their clients (small companies should avoid allying themselves with agencies with a large stable of big corporate clients so that they are not trea as afterthoughts). 2. And figure it out quickly. what's the history. the agency's general advertising philosophy. There are two major parts to an advertising strategy: Assessment and Action. the product or service. and the primary nature of the agency's accounts (are they familiar with your industry and the challenges involved in differentiating your company's products or services from others in that industry?). You will begin this process by answering the questions below. the way the company is positioned. What products and/or services do you offer? Define the qualities of these services and/or products.

or company might be the most important aspect of a marketing communications plan. 1. But besides CIT. impulse. Most people do the same. is one of the three types of strategic communications. Describe the personality or character with words just as if you were writing a biography or personal ad. thought. Just not as much software as I can get for a PC. You probably buy the same brand of soap or soda with a mindless motion at the market. from a simple slogan to an entire campaign. There are other such theories as well. feelings and ever-changing prejudices that influence purchase decisions. can be expressed in many ways. 9. but what they think about your client: "Gosh. product. In most cases you should express it in every ad. or sophisticated? 8. creative. but is not limited to. of perspective customers? It includes. along with branding and direct response. Position is that one descriptive sentence or slogan or image the brand is known for. The Emotional / Rational scale is a measure of reason vs. energetic. desire vs.7. Things like investments an d insurance. Brand positioning. . High to low involvement. What is the character like? What qualities stand out? Is the personality of your company innovative. How does that personality react to target audience? What characteristics stand out? Which characteristics and qualities get the attention of your prospects. perhaps as the tagline. People think Big Bank has more services and products than we do. Or perhaps it's not so much what people think about competitors. 1. Psycho-Dynamics is all about what s going on in the mind of the potential customers: the thoughts. logic. 1.2 (e) Consumer involvement Theory (CIT) CIT .is one way to understand the psychology and behavior of your target audience. But you do your homework when buying cameras or cars. Using the information from the previous steps create a personality or character for your company that represents your products or services. or as a brand character. more reliable products.2 (d) Understand the Psycho-Dynamics of the market This simply means: what s going on inside the brains of buyers. there are likely other issues. Involvement refers to how much time. Or. even inexpensive safe deposit boxes. that one specific idea that first comes to mind about the product. How you position your brand." Thus. Consumer Involvement Theory How the consumer relates to the purchase: Rational to emotional. I don't know if I want to buy a Mac. that one characteristic that sets the service apart from competitors. simple and insightful. So they think Big Bank is more convenient. perhaps more important issues.2 (c) Position a Company in the Minds of Consumers Positioning. as well as product or service positioning. Review the answers to the questions above and create a profile of your brand. but none quite so quick. such as why people buy the other brand: People think our competitor produces higher quality. Use the personality that you created in the previous step and build a relationship with your target market that you defined in Step 5. energy and other resources people devote to the purchase process. or even a sound.

an entertaining magazine. to break the automatic habit of spending their money with the competitor. There are four general categories: High involvement / emotional. say the local McDonald's. The places you eat lunch. prudence. the office location and lease. the purchase of a home or car. A. For both B2C and BtoB markets. Again. a car is an important expression of his status and ego. Give people visual details. can be more emotionally driven. high involvement / rational purchases tend to be linked to high cost. a car is strictly a way to get to work. as well as the company health insurance plan. and perhaps the hiring of certain employees. High involvement / emotional: Business purchases that fall into this category might include such things as office design. as well as ways to differentiate or re -position the product. That said. On the consumer side. This category includes most of the things you put into your basket at the drug store or market. But fleeting. high involvement consumer purchases can vary significantly on the rational / emotional scale from individual to individual. with clear explanations of features and benefits. For Mr. as well as major appliances and electronics. Low involvement / rational: These are the things we buy out of habit. Your task is to determine how the majority of your target market relates to the purchase of the particular product or service. it doesn't last a long time. weddings. B. This category can include financial services and products. So we don't spend a lot of time thinking about the purchase movies. person. For individuals. depends on the culture. candy. especially those for children. In some societies the selection of a husband or wife will fall into group. . cough medicines and the like. and holiday travel plans. Low involvement / emotional. without much thought. For Ms. But pain relievers. advertising. Over the counter medicines tend to fall into this category. advertising for Hi/R purchases tend to be copy driven. and how much purchasing power she has. with music. Low involvement / rational High involvement / rational: In this category you find expensive business purchases: anything relating to the technological infrastructure. So consider coupons and other incentives. or a birthday card or even selecting a restaurant for a special occasion. As can the purchase of a home or car. High involvement / rational. Advertising in this category tends to focus on visual and emotional appeals. and her selection is based on fuel economy and reliability. Here the typical role for advertising is to get people to sample or switch. high involvement / emotional purchases can include jewelry. Low involvement / emotional: The gratification we get from these products is emotional or sensual.passion vs.

htm http://www. and be great for your health Or. but no one wants the papaya flavor.com/small-business-encyclopedia/advertising-strategy http://marketing. B) Re-position it: Surprisingly Sweet. Or. something to encourage people to give it a try. that one most important thing you want to say: "Papaya surprise is loaded with healthy fiber.The advertising challenge here tends to be the flash promise of pleasure. The advertising strategy supports the marketing strategy. Our goal is to be profitable in this country within 6 months. in the first year we want to capture 10% of the market in six cities.com . the promise of a benefit. who is very demanding: it s got to taste great. to provoke. I want my papaya flavor to add 20% to my sales . to be accomplished within a budget. For example.com/cs/advertising/ht/definebrand. All of the above. such as pick up the phone or go online and order? 1. a great cook. of course.000 per month." In the following chapters the elements of Adverting Strategy will be explained individually in greater detail. Or. 1. especially in a crowded product category. is it to convince them to give the product another try? Is it to convince them rationally that the service delivers better value for the money? Is the objective to get consumers change their usage patterns? To buy your butter instead of the butter Mom always bought? Or react immediately in some way to the advertising. keep in mind that one single thread you want to weave into all of your communications.2 (g) Understand or define the marketing objective and strategy The marketing objective is a business goal. challenge or give them an incentive to re-appraise the brand? Or. Do you want the advertising to get people to think or feel or do something? Or a combination of the three? Another way to define the Ad Objective is to ask.enotes. what s the most important task for our advertising? Is it to encourage an emotional connection with the brand? Or. strawberry and vanilla are selling hot. Sources: http://advertisingstrategy.2 (f) Define Adverting Goals This is called the advertising objective. Surprisingly Healthy. C) Build a brand based on a fussy old lady. What do you suggest? In this case your strategy might be to: A) Re-name the product: Papaya Surprise. and do this in 12 months. of gratification.about.org/ http://www. We want to increase sales with this product to the point where profits reach $50. Here's one million dollars to work with. So X says. D) Achieve . immediate sales with an in-store promo plan or discount coupons. and surprisingly sweet. All the while. So let s say we re selling X s Farm Fresh Ice Cream chocolate.adcracker.not steal sales from the existing three or I m going to dump it in 12 months. Strong positioning can help.

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