This is the second in a three part series about advertising. In our last blog we spoke about the budgeting process for NEW programs and product you would want to introduce. In this blog we’ll discuss how to set advertising for EXISTING programs.
Let’s recognize several facts first.
1. Every product has a life cycle. Depending on where your product is in its life cycle will be an important factor in how you will spend to promote it
2. Will your product or program be modified, changed, renamed this budget year or will it be pretty much the same?
3. What did you spend last year to support it and did you get any sales lift when you did that?
a. Is the sales trend for the product down over the last two years
b. What specifically did you do and how much did you spend relative to the sales of the program
c. Did you do the same thing the year before last?
4. If you’re including a flier as part of your advertising expenditure, please don’t. I am talking about direct mail, electronic media and any digital media that you actually PAID for.
Let’s examine a typical scenario for Cosmic bowling. Many centers are reporting that their Comic Bowl has been off for several years.
No surprise, considering that the 23 yr old person you are trying to attract has seen the same product for 10 years and it just doesn’t give him the same sense of excitement it once did.
So now, you want to jazz up your product, maybe add a band every other week or once a month, create theme nights and get a Master of Ceremonies that rocks the crowd.
Let’s say you have done all that and it’s time to promote the product. Outside of Internet (emails and Face book) you might want to consider electronic media as well as direct mail.
Over the last three years, your cosmic bowl has done $75,000, $65,000 and now it’s trending at $55,000. So you have lost $20,000 in top line revenue which should translate into 75% to 80% of net (especially if you are past your break-even point).
What would you spend to get back to that $75,000 or more plateau?
Me? I would spend at least $5,000 over the course of the year, during key time periods to get that number moving in the right direction. Why $5,000?
Because if I do it right and actually hit that $75,000, I will have added $20,000; spent $5,000 and have $15,000 left…approximately three to one ROI. And that’s what I shoot for when I budget clients’ marketing programs.
Now if your product isn’t being changed and you just want to get the message out, then spend enough to buy you at least three two week flights (either on Cable or radio) in November, January and March to achieve a FOUR frequency every campaign.
This should give your sales a lift during peak times of the year.
(Remember to “Fish where the fish are.”)
Bottom line: Support your winning programs with enough advertising to create and reinforce top of mind awareness as well as a strong call to action – think promotional offer- for the program among existing customers and prospects.
Further, modify you losing programs, but support them more to a greater degree because you have new BENEFITS of the program you MUST communicate to get the customer and prospect to take action. Need a strong call to action here as well.
If you follow some of these guidelines, I believe you will see a sales lift.
Then again, you can choose to stick with just Internet marketing…and pray for rain on the weekends.J