Wednesday, 11 February 2009
Tuesday, 1 April 2008
As I speak to my customers, something is becoming increasingly obvious. Advertising is changing, or at least the way we respond to advertising is changing. Historically, and I'm going back 20 years or more, the first choice for many people was the Yellow Pages. The Yellow Pages was arguably perfect for its day. A big bound book of businesses, held alphabetically and by classification that covered my local area. If I wanted a plumber at three in the morning to fix a leak in my ceiling, there was really little other option in to turn to the famous yellow book.
Of course, there was no Internet back then, and so the choice as to where to look for businesses were somewhat limited. However, now things are quite different. I can access the Internet and search for whatever I choose from home, from the office, from my mobile phone, from Internet cafes, from virtually anywhere and the limitations of the Yellow Pages (it's big, heavy, hard to use and I have to have one to use one) are removed. Thus, the Internet seems to be the place to be, certainly if I want to appeal to today's buyer.
So if the Yellow Pages is so last century, and the Internet is the place to be, just what kind of advertising should I choose. Well, the problem with advertising on the Internet is there's simply too much of it. Think about it, how much do you actually pay attention to and how much do you ignore. The Internet is user driven and users never want to sit through endless advertising hence, when they have control they choose to simply ignore it all together. I'm guilty of it myself and have developed "banner blindness". I tend to look at the words and not the adverts. I'm sure many of you are the same.
The way these banner ads are paid for is by how many times they have served on pages, i.e. how many users the advert is displayed in front of. So, if your ad is shown to 10,000 people and everyone ignores it how many sales you think you'll get? I don't think banner ads are for me.
However, I do believe that the Internet will generate significant levels of interest from my business, and so I'm just about to embark on a Google pay per click campaign. Something which has been in the media now for a long period of time, and something which, by all accounts, generates quite a good response to those people who use this kind of advertising for their business. After all, Google's argument is the only people who will see my ad of those people who were searching for my product or service.
We'll wait and see!
Monday, 31 March 2008
Recent search engine statistics for February 2008 show that online purchases of 0845 numbers outweighed 0800 numbers by a factor of 3 to 1. WOW! 3 to 1. That's not just big, that's HUGE!
When you look at why 0845 is the number 1 choice though, it becomes increasingly obvious as to why it's taken the lead spot.
Simply put, 0845 is sensible whilst 0800 spells risk. Consider the following.
1. 0800 is clearly open to abuse. If an employee's partner discovers that they can speak to their other half at work FREE OF CHARGE, then why wouldn't they? Imagine that. Not only are you paying staff who don't produce anything, they cost you more money to receive (possibly) lengthy phone calls from unscrupulous partners. If they knew their call was going to cost them somnething, they would be less likely to make calls as readily.
2. It attracts the dreaded bargain hunter. If people aren't prepared to pay for a telephone call when enquiring about your products or services, are they going to want to pay full price for anything - or are they expecting a bargain?
3. Salespeople will target 0800 numbers as it keeps the cost of cold calling down. Paying to receive unwanted sales calls...hmmm.
4. 0845 is only the cost of a local call anyway, it's hardly going to break the bank given the competitive prices of calling locally these days.
Of course, both 0800 and 0845 allow you to monitor call levels, so from a monitoring point of view, are still exceptional tools for business.