Marketing Lessons From An Ad That’s A “Dud”

Wow, it looks like my Newspaper Ad that I shared with you last week caused a little stir with one subscrib… I mean, unsubscriber.  (You can check out the newspaper ad HERE).

I was originally going to share with you some not so great postcards today, but the message I got from this one unsubscriber takes the cake!

Instead of me trying to explain what she said you can have a look at it for yourself…

Now, I don’t know about you, but when I read, “…whoop de doo…” I about peed myself in laughter!!  Hahahaha  It was a good one!!

Putting aside the laughter and getting a little serious here, there’s a few things that struck me from what she said:

  1. Your newspaper ad did NOT do its job.
  2. You got two calls … which you now have to track …
  3. On an ROI basis, your NEWSPAPER ad … was a dud.

Let’s take a look at these a little closer.

Your newspaper ad did NOT do its job

What do you think, did the Newspaper ad do its job?

Whelp, here’s the thing.  The Newspaper Ad only had one job to do and that’s it.  It’s only job was to get potential home sellers to raise their hands and say they’re interested in the Home Seller’s Guide by calling or emailing.  That’s it.  Nothing more.

The Newspaper Ad is not supposed to sell the services.

It’s like a letter you get in the mail.  If you open your mailbox and see a letter and then throw it right into the trash without opening it then guess what… The envelope did NOT do it’s job.  The envelopes only job is to get your to open it up so you can take the next step which is read the letter (or, in our case, it would be a sales letter).  Then, the letter will sell you on another step and so on and so forth.

Same goes for Headlines.  The job of the Headline, whether in an ad, postcard, email, etc., is to get you to take the next step, which is usually to continue reading.

You got two calls … which you now have to track

Okay, so as she said… I got two calls… Whoop de doo!  hahaha

Sure, two calls ain’t a lot.  I can count that on one hand.  But, referring to what I just said above, the Newspaper Ad’s job was to get people to call or email for a Home Seller’s Guide.  And guess what?!  Two people called.

Now, like any good marketing program, YOU DO WANT TO TRACK YOUR LEADS, or should I say… FOLLOW-UP!  Not sure what she has against tracking and following up, maybe it’s the “work” involved.  I don’t know.

But that’s the name of the game.

On an ROI basis, your NEWSPAPER Ad … was a dud

Hmmm… You know, at the moment, regards to ROI (Return On Investment), she’s right.  The ad was a dud.  But only on a ROI basis and only at the moment.

Going back up to what I said earlier, again, the only job the Newspaper Ad had to do was get calls and emails, which it did.

Now if I want to get a positive ROI then I need to continue to follow-up with these two prospects and work on my sales skills to get them to list their houses. 


Let’s just say I end up getting these two prospects to list their houses with me.  Does that then make the Newspaper Ad, according to the unsubscriber, a success?

What happens if I list these two houses but they never sell and I never pick up any buyers or get any other leads from them?  That means I never get paid, which means it actually costs money in time and marketing of these properties and a negative ROI.

Would that make this Newspaper Ad a dud because the houses never sold and actually cost me money?  Or are there other underlining issues here?

Say you own a pizza shop.  You send out a postcard offering “Buy One Get One” and start getting a flood of customers into the door.  But, you have a little problem… Your wonderful cashier, Jimmy, likes picking his nose and being rude to customers.

So when these customers come on in with their postcard in hand ready to get their “Buy One Get One” pizzas, they see Timmy licking that big ole booger off his finger and so they decide to leave in disgust… who do you blame for the bad ROI, Timmy or the postcards?

I actually wrote about this in a previous article (HERE), but you see, when it comes to marketing each piece of the puzzle has only one job.  The envelope’s job is to get you to open it up to see the sales letter, the sales letter’s job is to get you to make that phone call, your customer service rep’s job is to take care of business, and so on!

With that, just because you think you have a “dud” doesn’t mean you really have a dud.  There’s a lot at play here.  You just have to be willing to take the time and do the work and see the bigger picture.

So what do you think, was this Newspaper Ad really a dud?  Do you think it did its job?  What do you consider a “dud”?  What do you consider a “winner”?  Comment below and let me know your thoughts.

Now go take action!

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