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Perception vs. Reality in Traditional Marketing

Perception vs. Reality

Every day at RAMP, we talk to professionals of all types about their local advertising efforts. We often hear the same questions, just worded differently. Let’s address some of the most common misconceptions in traditional business marketing:

Bigger is better. Of course, size matters but frequency is key. You don’t have to be in the newspaper with the biggest circulation or on the most popular radio station in town. Instead, the number of times your message is in front of the audience is just as, if not more, important than the number of people you reach each time. The medium with the biggest audience is often prohibitively expensive, so the average company is hard-pressed to advertise with much frequency. We’d rather reach 10% of the community with a solid, repeated message than attempt to influence 100% with sporadic efforts.

Nobody listens/watches that station. This typically means that the business owner or their employees are really saying, “we don’t listen to that station, or watch that channel.” RAMP uses Arbitron rating system for radio and Nielsen ratings system for television, which provides extremely detailed information about thousands of radio and television stations across the nation. These statistics are a much more reliable gauge of the market than the affinities of a particular office. If a station reaches enough of the target audience, it makes no differences whether we personally like the music the station plays or the actors in the program.

I don’t need to advertise to the whole region because people won’t drive that far. Some newspapers, radio, and TV stations reach beyond the neighborhoods that businesses are used to drawing from. It may feel like a waste to target people who seem unlikely to patronize your office or retail location, but unique value propositions can change the rules. When you offer an uncommon product or desirable service, you’ll be surprised how far people will drive to seek you out.

You must target women with your advertising. We actually agree with this one little bit, but don’t carry it too far. Conventional wisdom in many marketing circles says that you must target women with your ads because they are the ones making most of the buying decisions for the family. While you may want to avoid sources such as sports programs with small female audiences, it’s best to find media that attracts a mix of men and women – especially depending on what your product or service is.

Before you buy into traditional assumptions about business marketing, make sure you know the reasoning behind the assertion. Oftentimes they simply don’t apply to your particular brand or company. If you’d like to know more, contact us at RAMP Marketing for Business and schedule a free strategy session.


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