Why are you spending time, energy and money marketing your business?
Because you want to attract new prospective customers to you and you want to make more sales.
So there are two types of marketing:
- Marketing that you know that works - you can track your leads and sales back to the marketing campaign or communication.
- Marketing that you don't know works - and probably doesn't.
Type two is a bit vague because of the slow drip effect that repeated exposure to brand name and message has on the unconscious mind and the preference of customers and consumers to buy from familiar names if there are no other clear differences in what's on offer.
It's pretty clear that you want more type 1 marketing campaigns - proven profit winners - and fewer type two campaigns which could be draining your business of much needed resources.
But you can look at marketing along another dimension - aesthetics - what looks good.
- Attractive marketing - a nice press or magazine advert, a beautiful colour brochure, a funny TV commercial. It's marketing that you are proud to stick your logo on and associate with your name.
- Ugly marketing - the brash offers, the incessant repeating of the core message, the dull, word heavy newspaper advertorial, the informercial and the ten page sales letter.
Obviously you want category 1 marketing don't you?
Combining the two dimensions, we now have a 2 x 2 matrix and we could put all the marketing messages into one box or another and it's here that we spot the problem.
The marketing messages that don't work are more common than those that do and the pretty adverts have a particularly high occurrence of falling in the "don't work category" while some of the ugly advertising is extremely successful.
There's no hard and fast rule - it's not that "ugly advertising works, attractive advertising is a waste of money so I must make sure my marketing is ugly"
It's more a case that to make your marketing attractive often causes you to compromise the marketing message - aesthetically fewer words are good, white space is good, pictures are good and photos of beautiful people are particularly appealing.
But it's your marketing message that sells and gives the reasons why prospective customers should stop what they were doing and contact you now.
Don't be tempted to spend your money on beautiful marketing with a weak message. If possible you want both. Just don't accept compromises on your marketing message.
Remember, you don't have to like your marketing, it just has to work.