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How To Win Business and Influence People Part 3: Invest with More Focus and Less Diversification

Recently featured on Inside Indiana Business, find the article here:

Read Parts 1 & 2 of this series by following these links:

Very few local businesses have enough of an advertising budget to purchase effective amounts of advertising — or develop effective creative — in more than one type of media.

Intelligent Investors know diversifying their stock portfolio spreads risk among many asset classes, but it also reduces returns in bull markets.   Intelligent Advertisers must realize a focused approach will lead to the greatest return on investment, with little risk of any bear market.  

One of the keys to getting results in your advertising is repetition and consistency.  It’s important because we are bombarded by more advertising than ever.  Some studies suggest the average person in a large city will see over 5,000 commercial messages per day.

Think about some of the marketers you’re tired of seeing, the advertisers who never cease to invade your daily space.  Probably a local car dealer, a furniture store, maybe a grocery chain like Kroger.  On a national level you will probably see an ad from GEICO or AT&T by the time you get to work in the morning.  This is the type of repetitive consistency needed if you want customers to think of your product or service in their time of need.  And it’s absolutely obtainable if you focus your resources. 

But what if I miss some people?

If you choose the one right media, and you’re consistently repetitive, you will eventually reach a majority of your prospective clients.  Day to day or week to week, you’d rather be unavoidable to 30% of our target than forgettable to 90%.  Over time the penetration of your messaging will grow as different people cycle in and out of your chosen media.  

Managing multiple campaigns is expensive and difficult for a smaller business.  In most cities it can take a five or six figure investment —per each form of mediato establish an ongoing dominating presence.  So every dollar spent in another type of media could be keeping you from being effective in the one right media.  

There are a lot of reasons why businesses buy too many media: They take bad advice or employ ineffective media professionals, they meet with too many salespeople, or they try and copy what larger and more capitalized businesses do. Big businesses can buy everything because they have big budgets!

All of us are consumers of media, and we all develop very strong opinions based on our own consumption and behaviors.  This often negatively influences media buying decisions — the conclusion that your customers also consume media the way you do.  

This creates a terrific contrarian investing opportunity, because setting up a roadblock in one type of media is proven to work yet very few marketers have the discipline or courage to stick with it.  

Try picking one local media and seek to dominate it. By dominate I mean take advantage of this focused spending and run more ads, more often, than any of your competitors. 

Ever heard of Snapple?  They started with just one radio program, Howard Stern, after a great response they added Rush Limbaugh.  Just focusing and dominating two programs basically launched a billion dollar brand. You could do the same, only on a slightly smaller scale.  

The #1 Chevy Dealer in Indianapolis is Hare Chevrolet, located in the far northern suburb of Noblesville.  If you want to buy a Chevy, there is no lack of choices or dealers to visit.  But one of the reasons for Hare’s success I believe is their unwavering commitment to one media — local radio.

Hare Chevrolet radio commercials are voiced by the “Sisters of Savings”, former owners Monica Peck and Courtney Cole.  

You may be familiar with Shane Co. jewelry stores and the voice of Tom Shane. From a jewelry perspective, they own radio. On any given day in any given week, if they have a store in your market, you will hear Tom Shane’s soothing (or annoying to some) voice with an appealing story and offer. Notice that you won’t see Tom Shane on TV, in the newspaper, or doing much of anything online. And I promise you, Mr. Shane was not able to dominate radio from the very beginning. He started with one station, in one city, and built from there.