When you’re marketing your small business, you should always take the 4 P’s of marketing into consideration: product, price, place and promotion. The 4th P is for promotion – promotion as in “advertising’. One of the most effective advertising techniques your small business can utilize is to tightly targeting your audience.
This technique can increase your advertising effectiveness while lowering advertising costs. Not only will you be spending “less” by targeting fewer eyeballs within the market – but you’ll also increase the likelihood of members of your target market carrying your marketing messages to others within their circle.
Sometimes – determining your target audience is defined by your product or service while other times – you must make the choice.
Demographic targeting can be as broad – or limited – as you want it to be. By tightly targeting your demographic – you can create a compelling message which breaks through the protective mental barriers consumers have constructed to preserve their sanity from an over saturation of media.
However, you must be careful when you’re tightly targeting your demographic audience. It seems to be very easy for your message to take an unexpected “wrong turn” and instead of connecting with your target audience – you’re offending them.
Oh poor Summer’s Eve and their recently pulled “talking va-jay-jay via handpuppet” ads. However, they’re not the only company to offend and entire gender with an offensive ad.
Over at Love Your Body – they have an entire page devoted to ads which are offensive to women. Peruse the ads and you have to wonder what executives were thinking when they approved these images.
Just because you’re targeting men doesn’t mean you have to create ads which are offensive to women.
However, offensive ads aren’t limited to those that are offensive to women. During the 2011 Super Bowl – daily deal site Groupon took home the “award” for most offensive ad of 2011.
Just like Summer’s Eve – Groupon tried to limit the damage by limiting the ad (if you try to go to the ad directly on YouTube – it tells you the ad is “private”) the video lives on in the link above.
I believe that the increasing number of offensive ads is in response to a feeling of “futility” many large advertisers are feeling. They are afraid their ads are being “over looked” and in response – have responded by creating ads with stir controversy.
Like the teenager who cuts herself to feel “alive” – these ads are destructive to the brands which are airing them.
As a small business owner – you can rejoice that is is extremely rare for your advertising efforts to go so horrifically awry. You probably know your customers well enough to instinctively shy away from any message which would offend your community.
Target your demographic audience is an incredibly effective advertising technique. Just make sure you don’t air the wrong message – because tightly targeting your market not only increases effectiveness – it also increases the destructiveness of a message gone wrong as well.