The Future of Advertising
By Jon Wuebben,
Professional Website Copywriter
Wednesday, May 25, 2005; 11:00am EST
Advertising is a medium that constantly evolves. It changes with
the times. It adapts to new technologies. It is unrelenting in its
desire to find new and better ways to reach an ever-growing consumer
But its not simply advertising that evolves. Consumers and consumer
behavior are changing too. As we look at the future of advertising,
it's important to look at how the two interact and change together
Without a doubt, the Internet has revolutionized the industry. It
has taken the world - and the advertising world by storm. And it has
only just begun to make an impact. The Internet has become a global
medium with massive potential. Forty years ago, television was
considered new media. Fifteen years ago, it was cable. Today, people
spend increasing amounts of time online at the expense of other
media. The first evidence of this audience migration appeared in
1998 in a Forrester Research report.
The researchers asked PC users which activities they were giving up
to spend more time on their computers. 75% of the respondents said
they gave up television.
Interactive. That is the real key behind the power of the Internet
in advertising. The Internet is really the only medium where we see
true interactivity. In addition:
' It means greater viewer involvement.
' It means users can access services according to their interests
and their tastes.
' They can request and receive specialized product information, make
an instant purchase, all the while saving time and expense.
' The effectiveness of Web advertising appears to relate to the fact
that surfing the web is an actively engaging experience, similar to
Consumers also have the choice to 'opt-in' to receiving additional
information on a particular product or service. In Seth Godin's
groundbreaking book, Permission Marketing, he said, 'By reaching out
only to those individuals who have signaled an interest in learning
more about a product, Permission Marketing enables companies to
develop long-term relationships with customers, create trust, build
brand awareness- and greatly improve the chances of making a sale.'
All the Rage: Pay Per Click and Natural Search Using SEO
It's no secret what has taken over the business world, in industry
after industry. Pay Per Click and Natural Search Using Search Engine
Optimization (SEO). Today, being on the first page for your most
popular keyword phrase is like having the most memorable prime time
television commercial in 1973.
Pay per click advertising on search engines allows you to choose
keywords you would like your site to appear under when a potential
customer engages in a search. You decide how much you are willing to
pay each time a person clicks on the search results. But it can be
competitive ' and expensive if you are trying to use keywords that
are very popular.
Natural Search or Organic Search is the non-biased, non-paid results
that come up when you do a search. This can be influenced heavily by
what's called 'Search Engine Optimization' ' the complex and time
consuming practice of ensuring that your website is doing all the
right things in order to rank high for certain search terms. In this
arena, smaller companies can out maneuver large corporations, so
there's a lot of excitement generated because of this.
Essentially, that's where the power of advertising is going. It's
all about Search. And Search is only going to become more important
over the next ten years. If you can get on that coveted first page
organically, well then, more power to you!
Web Sites, Banner Ads, etc..
The other forms of on-line advertising vehicles are of course, web
sites, banner advertising placed on others sites, newsletters,
ezines, and email. They are used in many different combinations, for
different purposes at different times. But most savvy companies are
using all of them. The value of banner ads has been hotly debated
for a number of years. Opponents argue that the click-through rates
have gone down so much, that banner ads are nothing but wasted
money. But research clearly shows that banners are very effective in
building brand awareness. On-line users may not click on a banner,
but if they see it enough times, the company's name is drilled into
their head. When its time to shop, that product or service is first
in their mind. Simply being exposed to the brand as one surf's the
web is enough to make a big impression.
The impact of banners on brand awareness was tested for the first
time in fall 1996 by Millward Brown International. Three brands were
tested including a men's apparel brand, a telecommunications brand
and a technology company. The findings were significant and
conclusive for each brand. Awareness was significantly greater among
the banner-exposed (test) group than the non-exposed (control)
group. Specifically, exposure to the ad banners alone increased
brand awareness from 12% to 200% in a banner-exposed group.
The study also compared the impact of the banner ads in this test to
television and magazine norms from prior Millward Brown studies. The
findings were remarkable: Single exposure to a Web banner generated
greater awareness than a single exposure to a television or print
ad. Rather, the effectiveness of Web advertising seems to stem from
the fact that Web usage is an actively engaging exercise.
Newsletters and Ezines
Most smart marketers out there have either a newsletter or ezine
nowadays. These types of customer communication and advertising
tools will only continue to grow in use and importance. It goes back
to the whole 'what's in it for me?' issue. The customer wants to be
part of the process. They want to learn something. Or keep
themselves updated on the latest news. Most of all, they want to get
something out of the relationship. They want to do more than buy
something, they want to improve their lives in some small way ' and
they want you to help them do that.
Email is another of the big three Internet advertising mediums.
Companies like Got Marketing, OptinBig.com, and N5R are providing
new and exciting email marketing solutions for thousands of
progressive firms. Their results are impressive. Consider response
rates that average 10 to 20 times those of traditional direct mail.
Or campaign Network marketing referral rates as high as 40%. The
bottom line is that programs they put together have produced
millions of leads for clients. And it's surprisingly affordable.
This means that almost anyone can now utilize this advertising
medium. But it has to be done smartly, because you don't want your
emails to end up in spam filters. That is one inherent problem with
email advertising, especially in the past two years.
N5R in particular is now one of the leading direct marketing
agencies in North America. They develop innovative one-to-one
marketing campaigns that drive a measurable, positive ROI on behalf
of their clients by driving acquisition and conversion to trial and
purchase for their clients. They have developed award-winning
strategies in five major industry sectors. These include Internet
Marketing and Online Contests/Promotions, Permission Based Email
Marketing, Text Messaging, Success Based Email.
In Internet Marketing and Online Contests/Promotions, marketers can
gather and compile behavior and preference data from prospects and
customers and use this information to send targeted and relevant
information. Developing ongoing programs of one-to-one communication
is cost effective and measurable. Contests are the quickest and most
effective way to gather this data and build relationships with
customers. It's very possible to build a permission-based database
of over 50,000 prospects in only 6 weeks, increase web site traffic
by 900%, improved online sales revenue by 1,000%, and achieve $40
million in sales from leads generated by an online promotion.
With Permission Based Email Marketing, loyal clients are just an
e-mail away. Where traditional marketing campaigns fail, e-mail can
shine through. E-mail marketing allows companies to speak one-to-one
with their audience in a respectful, intelligent and creative way.
It is extremely cost-effective, provides the foundation for future
marketing initiatives, and delivers measurable results.
Text Messaging or SMS (Short Message Service) is a technology that
allows people to send and receive short (up to 160 characters)
written messages on cellular phones. It is already hugely popular in
Europe and Asia and is growing rapidly in North America. SMS
marketing offers the following benefits:
One-to-one communication with your target group, anywhere, anytime
reach, low campaign cost, and very measurable data. Imagine if your
mobile phone received an email message, 'You're only a block from a
Starbuck's; stop in for a 20% discount on your latte.' The data is
available and marketers are starting to tap into these resources.
Success Based Email is free email deployment where companies only
pay for results. This "pay-per-click" approach is based on the
premise that companies will only pay for each email that receives a
"click-through" from the recipient. Not only does the new approach
enhance the value of marketing dollars spent on such campaigns, the
move will likely trim total dollars spent.
For example if 100,000 emails are sent, 70% are opened and 15% of
the recipients actually click on a link in the email then clients
will only be charged for the 15,000 people that clicked on the link,
not for the other 85,000 that didn't. The return on investment (ROI)
or cost savings inherent in this new approach will be very appealing
to permission-based marketers. The bottom line is that marketers
will now pay for real, measurable results.
The Next Step
Compared with other media, the Web is still limited in its bandwidth
offerings. But it's getting better every day. With the continued
improvement of bandwidth development, we will soon be positioned
well to create full-featured multimedia advertising on the Internet.
Once a majority of consumers have DSL capability and the computer
power to access it, there will be some incredible things happening.
Sites like tvtonic.com are already offering some very compelling
visual and audio imagery in the form of movie trailers and music
Market researchers, futurists and industry experts predict that
interactivity through multiple technologies and devices will change
how consumers interact with marketers. Interactive advertising will
soon be everywhere. So, in effect, it could be considered the age of
mass customization in advertising. Advertisers will have the tools
to narrow their targets and address Web ads to individuals and not
to a demographic or psychographic group. Why market a commercial to
1 million people, most of who aren't in the target audience, when
the same ad could be shown to 10,000 people who are very interested
in the product or service? Most of those will even give their name
Interactivity will also be a part of television. Interactive TV will
be the norm in the near future, and this too is another exciting
opportunity. There will be total integration between TV channels and
advertisers web sites. While we are watching TV, we will be able to
interact with what we are seeing, ordering hamburgers from the
McDonalds down the street or communicating with the local car dealer
that we are interested in buying a car. Clicking on products we see
in TV shows and ordering them will be easy. Your TV will keep track
of what you are watching. Your TV will even know what kind of car
you own because you'll tell for the free oil change you're offered
in exchange. The oil change will be compliments of DirecTV, and it
is only good at Jiffy Lube, which has paid to be the official
oil-change provider for DirecTV.' That's the way it will work.
Service Initiative Advertising
Another major trend is what I call 'Service Initiative Advertising'.
Let's face it; consumers are tired of advertising as usual. Many
people say they hate commercials. The success of Tivo and satellite
radio can attest to this. They want more from their advertising. And
who could blame them? People are inundated with advertising today-
every where they go. Service Initiative Advertising takes the whole
process one step further. Essentially how it works is that it
requires advertising to offer some value to the consumer.
For example: Kraft Foods creates a website that offers busy mothers
a source for quick recipes for the family evening meal. The idea
isn't to push Kraft products, but to promote Kraft as a brand that
offers a service to customers. There have been companies who
positioned their entire marketing strategy on this tenant. Now, it
will become a key part of advertising for almost everyone. The
consumer wants to know you care.
It's important to realize that advertising mediums of the past will
still be here. But, they may look a little different in the future.
Direct mail will always be around as long as people like to receive
mail. And despite external challenges, the U.S. Postal service will
still be around. TV and radio will be here too.
But the future is here. And advertising will never be the same.
One thing that is certain is that it will continue to be as exciting
and dynamic as it has been in the past. But now, the consumer is a
part of the process.
About the Author
Jon Wuebben is a professional Website Copywriter, SEO Copywriter and
Advertising Copywriter with 10 years experience in B2B & B2C
copywriting and marketing. He can be reached at (909) 437-7015, or
online at http://www.CustomCopywriting.com for any copywriting
project you may have or if you would like more articles or a
complimentary Website Copy analysis.
Need a custom newsletter or e-zine article written? Call Jon Today
at (909) 437-7015 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for a
professional Website Copywriter, SEO Copywriter, or Advertising