market analysis

market analysis
Zianetti Ltd
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Some marketing advice

A 15-Point Checklist for Your Ad

1. Does it follow the "Five-Second Rule"? Can readers immediately figure out what you're selling? You really have only three seconds - because it takes two seconds to turn the page and they will. Busy readers won't struggle to figure out your pitch. The Rule: You have a total of five seconds to show them - clearly - what you're selling.

2. Does the headline make them read the rest of the ad? The sole purpose of the headline is to drive the reader to read the rest of the ad. This is not the place for a sales pitch, this is the place for creating a strong attention-getting, interest-arousing, kick-you-in-the-butt, you-just-gotta-read-the-rest lead-in. Use the Jeff Dobkin 100 to 1 Rule: Write 100 headlines, go back and pick out your best one!

3. Does it have an interest-arousing sub-head? All ads - space permitting - should have a sub-head. Sub-heads, in slightly-smaller-than-the-headline type, are the transition between the headline and the body copy. This line also doesn't sell the product - its only function is to further interest, hook the reader, and drive him to the body copy.

4. Make sure the first line of the body copy doesn't sell anything, either. The purpose of this line is still to keep the reader reading - that's its only function. You haven't really hooked the reader until he passes this line, after which he has committed himself to read the rest of the ad IF it's well written. Hence:

5. Do you make a smooth transition from the interest-arousing headline to the sub-head to the first line of the body copy which introduces the selling copy in the body of the ad? This is the last crucial step in making sure your reader continues to read the rest of the ad. In the body copy, you start to sell the response you'd like - usually to make the phone ring.

6. Is your offer clear? Along with knowing what your product is, if you are selling directly from the ad, do readers know how much it is, and how and where they can purchase it? Don't forget - let them know if it's available directly from you -- and give a big phone number.

7. Does your ad make them want to buy your product? Does your copy make it sound like it's the best product in the world - one that will get the job done promptly - at the right price? You've got to make your product sound good enough to stop them from going over to Sears and buying it there. It's a tough assignment for a few scribbles on a sheet of paper.

8. Does it make the reader want to rush to the phone to place an order or call for more info? No, it's not enough to just say it's for sale! You've got to coerce the reader into action. Remember, you're working against reader inertia: a body at rest tends to stay at rest.

9. Does your ad show immediate benefits to the reader? A product has features, but it's the benefits the reader gets from the features that make him buy the product. No one buys a fishing pole because it's made out of fiberglass - that's a feature. People buy fishing poles to catch more fish - a benefit. See?

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