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Magazine print ads ... they can be beautiful, funny, enlightening. They should inspire interest and response. (Isn't that what you're paying for when you buy the space?) Yet so many ads are just plain boring, lazy or self-centered.

What makes a great ad?

Great ads grab attention, inform and delight. Great ads drive response from the audiences you want to reach. Are yours working?

When you're choosing the publication, determining the ad size, planning and building the message, what's your purpose? You want to be noticed. You want your ad to grab those who are looking for what you offer, yes?

Then why are there so many boring, cluttered, confusing, mundane and downright lazy ads out there? (Here's my blog post with examples.) Just placing your name in an ad is not going to get the response you expect!

whatsinit.pngSo what is that one essential question? The one that will make a HUGE difference in the results you see from your advertising?  (see right >>>>)


Because your ads are about your audiences, not about who you are or what you offer. What do you offer that they're looking for? What is the outcome, experience, result they want? What will surprise, delight or intrigue them? What makes you different and better from others who offer the same thing? Why should your audiences care?

Words of wisdom from the great David Ogilvy:

“When I write an advertisement, I don’t want you to tell me that you find it ‘creative.’ I want you to find it so interesting that you buy the product.” 

Before you get excited about how creative or pretty or entertaining your ad is, step into the shoes of your target audiences. Does your ad stand out and tell the reader "what's in it for me?" At a glance? If not, start over.

What else? Be specific. What are the details and nuggets that will move your reader to think "I want to know more"?

I've summarized a checklist of five tips for great ads and shown a few examples of lazy ads in this blog post. I would love to hear your thoughts. 

Of course, great ads must reflect your positioning ... how you visually and verbally present who you are and what you offer for your target audiences.

Rise above the rest. Be unique, distinctive and memorable. We can help. Use our positioning worksheet to get started. 



Jennifer Larsen Morrow

Creative Company President/Brand Visionary

Twitter: @jlmorrow
LinkedIn: /in/jenniferlarsenmorrow
Direct: 503.687.1308