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Social Media May Not Be Appropriate For All Advertisers

By June 5, 2012No Comments

A couple of weeks ago General Motors stunned the advertising and technology worlds by announcing it was no longer going to advertise on Facebook. The automaker had concluded that advertising on Facebook simply didn’t sell cars.

This story should send a message to every Jacksonville advertising agency and all advertisers. Not every medium is appropriate for every advertiser. GM had also made the decision not to buy ads on next year’s Super Bowl for the exact same reason. Its marketing department realized that it wasn’t necessarily selling any vehicles by buying space on that extravaganza.

It is obvious that General Motors got burned badly by buying advertising space on all those mediums. If a giant company like GM can’t afford to advertise everywhere neither can small businesses. Yet many businesses make the mistake of trying to advertise everywhere.

The lesson for the average business from the GM/Facebook affair is clear. You should ask yourself some important questions before you spend money on advertising or video production in Jacksonville. These questions include:

• Will anybody actually see this advertisement?
• Who will see this advertisement?
• Will the people who see this advertisement pay any attention to it?
• Will the people who buy my product or service see this advertisement?
• Will this advertisement induce anybody to spend money with me?

These are difficult questions to ask and they can even be harder to answer. Many advertisers never ask them they just mindlessly spend money and hope that the commercials draw in customers.

To make matters worse many businesses buy advertising because the competition is doing it. These entrepreneurs forget that everyday businesses spend millions of dollars upon advertising that doesn’t work.

Small businesses can avoid the kind of mistakes that GM made by asking questions when they buy advertising services such as Jacksonville web design. One good question to ask is: “do you have an example of a business similar to mine that increased its sales with a campaign like the one you’re proposing for me”?

This goes double for new mediums like Facebook because contrary to popular belief many of them are not proven. A recent poll indicated that half of Americans consider Facebook to be nothing but a fad.

This brings us to another lesson from the GM and Facebook story. Just because something is new, cool or fashionable does not mean that it is effective. Facebook maybe a popular means of staying in touch but its advertising value is dubious. More traditional mediums such as print, terrestrial radio and television actually reach more people and could be more effective.

Always carefully evaluate your advertising choices because advertising costs money. Money spent on ineffective or questionable advertising is money wasted.