Knowing how and when to start when you decide to advertise your firm
Sometimes, your friends or family may not have all the answers. Before you text a friend to ask if this is true, do me a favor: Take a second to think about a typical stressful situation. Maybe a pipe burst in your home. Does the kid need braces? Is your anniversary coming up? You’re going to need a little help if these things come up (I mean, unless you happen to be a plumber/orthodontist/jeweler). Before even starting your search for help, you probably had some possible ideas on where to start.
In the advertising world, this phenomenon is being “Top of Mind.” While my brother Jimmy (who doesn’t exist), who works at Filmore, Baxter, and Rothington, LLC (which also doesn’t exist, I think), may be at the top of my mind, he’s there because he’s my brother. If we’re spending our ad dollars, we need to make sure we’re at the Top of Mind for all of our potential clients. Of course, getting to the top of people’s minds is a little more easily said than done. We can start with a couple key components that lead to Top of Mind Recognition: Reach and Frequency.
Reach refers to the total number of people or households who saw your message at least once in a certain period of time through a given medium. Essentially, it’s how many different people you are reaching with your message. Referring back to my fake attorney brother, Jimmy, his reach is tiny, as his friends, family, and co-workers may be the only ones aware that he is a personal injury attorney. This example is also contingent that Jimmy’s last name isn’t Filmore, Baxter, or Rothington. One day, his name may be on the door. Until then, his message reaches only a few of us.
But still, my first thought for who to call after my car accident was Jimmy. Why? Frequency is the number of times (or frequency) a person or household comes into contact with your message, and it is your other major component when discussing your ad dollars. Jimmy doesn’t reach many people, but his frequency for me is through the roof. Every time I come into contact with my brother, I am reminded that he is a personal injury attorney. When his type of services are needed, I’m much more likely to reach out to him.
For the rest of us, we need to allocate ad dollars to gain the right reach and frequency that ultimately lead to more potential clients calling us up.
The Super Bowl is the biggest game and ad draw in the US every year, should I exhaust my ad budget to run a single Super Bowl ad? That would reach virtually everyone! Reach is good, right?
Yes, reach is great! But it’s not much without frequency. The age-old (Rule of 7 marketing principle)[hyperlink: https://www.thebalancesmb.com/how-to-use-the-rule-of-7-to-radically-grow-your-business-4037683] informs us that prospects typically need to come into contact with your message at least seven times before taking notice and becoming primed for action. If your plan is to drop a proverbial ad bomb to reach as many people at once as possible, you may want to rethink a bit to keep your message in front of your potential clients.
Eric Elliott is a marketing and creative professional and serves as Principal for VIP Marketing and Advertising an integrated marketing agency, Principal of Craft Creative and Editor of The Legal Ad Journal, based in North Charleston, SC.
In 2018 his advertising agency, VIP Marketing and Advertising received notoriety as one of the top 400 branding agencies in the United States by Clutch. When Eric isn’t working on an ad campaign or creating the next advertising masterpiece for his clients he spends time with his wife and children. He enjoys consuming social knowledge and attending marketing conferences. He is currently focusing his energy toward his podcast The AdCast and publishing a self-help memoir. You can reach him at Eric@heyimeric.com or various social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, Snapchat.