The Power of 26: Don’t Spread Yourself Too Thin

Welcome along once again and thank you for joining us Today. This is Dennis Kelly of First Impressions Media and we are already up to article # 7 in our series of Ten.

Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising & How To Avoid Them –
#7 Don’t Spread Yourself Too Thin

 

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The  series thus far has shown some of the common and unfortunately all too often repeated mistakes and hiccups that too many advertisers have taken too long to learn.

I hope that the information in this series has made you aware of the importance of some simple, basic, but powerful things you can do to make your advertising stronger.
Craft it to be more memorable, and be more efficient for you. It is, quite simply, an easier way to do business when you know how your ads are performing and where you need to fix things.

One of the challenges that many advertisers face is money. Some may say, …Well I’ve got a big budget, I can buy anything. So what does it matter? Well maybe you do and that’s great. But if you’ve got a lot of money, I want you to be able to keep more of it.

If you don’t have as much as you’d like, I want to help you earn some more. Enjoy some more through your product sales. However, I also want to make sure that you spend what you have smartly and efficiently. Mistake Number Seven, that I want to focus on for today is the practice of spreading yourself too thin and not doing a good job anywhere.

Do you like toast and peanut butter? You get a nice curl of peanut butter on the knife, or a dollop on the spoon and spread it generously on two slices of toast. Perfect.

Now, take that same quantity of peanut butter and spread it on the 20 or so slices in an average loaf of bread. Not quite as generous a serving per slice is there?

What happens too frequently is that an advertiser has bet the ranch on the next untested campaign.

They know this one’s going to be fantastic, and they’ll pull out all the stops. Putting all the marketing muscle that they have behind it and unfortunately without sufficient testing they didn’t know how well it was going to perform, and all they hear is the deathly sound of crickets.

Unless your pockets are very, very deep, please, please, please, don’t try to be everywhere especially when you’re starting out. Chances are pretty good that you don’t have the luxury of a sizable budget to fall back on, or a sizable budget that can sustain you through the course of the year.

You need to pick your spots. We’ve touched on that earlier. But what I want to make sure of, when you do go into the marketplace, ultimately I want you to be at the point of utilizing three and four and five and six and a dozen different media pillars to keep your company’s foundation and reputation strong.

You probably won’t get there overnight, and that’s okay. Many of the profitable and large companies you see you out there today have spent years and years building the foundation that gives them the status they enjoy today, but they didn’t start out like that.

That’s where too many advertisers, large and small, I think make the mistake of feeling they have to compete in the big leagues, right out of the gate.

That can be a death knell for many companies because they don’t have the resources to compete at that level. Part of the challenge is you end up spreading yourself too thin, and being memorable to no one. You’ll dilute your own brand by having a lackluster presence in everything rather than a robust strong presence in maybe one or two media to start.

You simply have to have a solid foundation and put creative, and the right message, and a call to action in every one of your ads to get your target group to say …’ oh hey I saw these guys last week online I was I was doing something and on one of the websites I saw where they had a great little leaderboard ad, yeah that was good because they were also in the newspaper they ran a front page banner ad that really caught my attention and for about two weeks I was pretty sure I heard them on the radio, sponsoring a news report or something like that…

That’s the kind of dialogue, the awareness that you want to have happening with your prospects. They should ultimately get to know you as part of their day to day routine. You want to become integral, and, forgive the grammar, unmissable in their daily routine. You want to have as many touch points as possible without breaking the bank.

How do you do that? Well you start by one media at a time. You build up some awareness, some profile, some credibility. When you start achieving some sales, then you put more money back into that which you started, to keep that going. Now maybe you try adding a little bit more. Maybe some magazine ads for three months. You‘ve picked three or four of the best magazines that specifically cater to your industry and you try two and three different creatives amongst the magazines, rotating them and seeing what kind of response you get.

See how many people visit your website.
See how many people pick up the phone and say Dennis I’ve got to talk to you.

See how many people actually go out of their way and say this is the product for me.
Here’s my credit card. How soon can you get it to me?

You want to make sure that you have a solid foundation in any one media before you start branching off into other players. Too weak a media foundation for any campaign, and none of them are going to perform well enough if they are all underserviced, under purchased, and underplanned.

You want to make sure that your foundation is solid. That’s where the help of a strong marketing team and a good media person can help you utilize whatever resources you have to deliver something efficient, and effective and realistic.

Because you can spend as much or as little as you want for as long or short a period as, as you want. But you need to spend it smartly. Because the campaign will cost you the same amount of money whether it works or not.

So please take the time to do a good job. And if it means you only start with one media that’s fine. You are building for the future and you are building on a solid strength, on a proven foundation. Then when it comes time to layer in more media, you know you’ve got a baseplate that you can rely on because it’s already proven itself worthwhile.

When you’re building your media platform, do them one at a time. And, importantly as I mentioned, if they work, that’s fabulous, and you can repeat that success, because now you know what to do. But if they tank remember you haven’t lost everything. You haven’t bet the ranch on a campaign that fizzled after three weeks.

Spend small to start, and don’t spread your media budget too thin.

And with that I shall bow out for today. Dennis Kelly

If you would like this article as it originally aired in Video format, please click

Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising & How To Avoid Them

https://www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca/top-10-mistakes—videos-by-dennis.html

Spike of Angels Blog Readers: If you’re liking what’s being revealed so far in this Top Ten series, you’re going to love the treasures that await you in 9 Secrets of How To Improve Your Advertising.

A specialized 3CD & E-Book package distilling 3 decades of in the trenches experience to
Nine Vital secrets you need to know to catapult yourself miles ahead of your competition.

They won’t know what hit them.

9 Secrets - 3CDS
Valued at over $800, this game changer is a must have to your marketing & media library. For a limited time you won’t save 50%, not even 60%, but if you act now you will save over 75% with a time limited offer of $197. That includes HST and includes shipping to your home or office.

This is the guidebook you wish you had started with.                                                                Go get it now, before this offer expires. Click this link to order yours now.

SPECIAL FOR Spike of Angels Blog Readers, -YOU ARE GETTING FIRST CHOICE ON THIS OFFER:

If you order two or more sets of Nine Secrets of How To Improve Your Advertising, you’ll
save $47 per set and pay only $150 each for this amazing package.

BUY HURRY, THERE ARE ONLY 100 COPIES AT THIS DISCOUNTED OFFER9 Secrets - 3CDS

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The Power of 26: Start Small For Big Success

Greetings once again, and thanks so much for joining us today.

This is Dennis Kelly of First Impressions Media and we are up to article number six in our series of Ten. The Top Ten Advertising Mistakes and How To Fix Them.

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We’ve covered a lot of ground so far, and thanks very much for staying with me through this. These are very intertwined tips and observations. As you’ve already seen, there is some crossover from one tip to another. They all stand on their own but they are all powerful connections not the least of which is today’s tip Number Six.

For many small to medium-sized advertisers who perhaps don’t have the resources to have a marketing or media person on staff, they are sometimes at the mercy of whichever salesperson arrives. Whoever comes in  proposing to sell them advertising space or time or an opportunity in any newspaper, radio, magazine, online opportunity, out of home. And that can be quite daunting and quite intimidating.

Because well, you’d like to believe that these guys are the professionals. This is their livelihood.  It’s what they do certainly they would not steer me wrong. Certainly, not intentionally.  So why don’t I just keep endorsing them and writing a cheque every month for X number of dollars that we may or may not have, and hope that they will be able to direct some business my way.

Yeah you’ve seen what happens when that happens. You’ve seen what happens when that strategy is undertaken and two or three months later you may find yourself with absolutely no sales.

Well what happened? We spent five, ten, twenty, thirty, fifty thousand dollars with you and we enjoyed no sales.  A not uncommon reply is to the effect,……
…well you just have to keep your ads out there, keep the name going, and keep your profile up there, maybe consider a bigger ad with us….Blah Blah Blah.

While there’s a certain grain of truth in that, you should be able to determine pretty quickly if your ads are working. That’s why we suggested right at the outset to test the ads, and to code them, and identify them, and if they’re working you will see those results very quickly. You can adjust it at any time, but if you don’t give your ads a response mechanism, how are you ever going to know what’s triggering the cash register?

You will certainly know what’s not working. If nobody’s coming in, the ads aren’t working that’s a good clue. But if there is some activity, fantastic! Celebrate and if you’ve got enough, open a champagne.

Now, find out what it is about the ad, the message, where it was placed what was said, when it ran, that made it work. Find out everything you can about what brought in that response. That customer, that client, that sale, so that you can do it again. And you can do it again on a bigger, grander, longer scale.

The sales reps that I’ve met through the years as I’ve mentioned earlier are, in the majority, very nice people. I have some wonderful relationships with many of them. Some of them going back decades and that’s fantastic because they have always been very helpful. They have proven themselves to me as reliable in helping me do my job to help our client achieve their goals.

But understand, as always, as salespeople, their intent is to separate you from your money as regularly as possible and not necessarily have to prove that their media is working.

They want to sign you up for as many ads as they can, as fast as they can, and convince you that theirs is the best place for your sales message to be. Please don’t be so quick to sign that cheque and here’s how you fix this.

Before you commit to a campaign of any length or substance, try it out on a small scale. If your ad has the right appeal, provides the solution, gives a call to action then you should see the results quickly. And not have to be out there months on end waiting for someone to initiate trial and use your product or service.

This is where testing and coding and tracking ads pays for itself in spades. If the magazine or the website, the TV spot, the radio commercial isn’t triggering responses then it’s time to try something else.

But as I mentioned right at the beginning, you have to test it and you have to find out for your own satisfaction and for your own wallet, what’s working and what isn’t, so you know how to improve it for the next time.

Speaking of the next time this is Dennis Kelly of First Impressions Media inviting you once again to triple W First Impressions Media dot ca, and I look forward to seeing you
on the next video

You can view Video # Six at these links:

Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising & How To Avoid Them

(https://www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca/top-10-mistakes—videos-by-dennis.html)
OR

 

Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising and How To Avoid Them – Video # 6 of 10

 

 

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Dennis Kelly
President
First Impressions Media
www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca
Ph & Fax: 905-427-3819
E-mail: dennis@firstimpressionsmedia.ca

 

The Power of 26: You Gotta Dance With Who You Brung!

Greetings once again, and thank you once more for joining me. It’s such a treat to
have you share a few moments with me.

We’ve made it to article Number Five in the series of the Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising & How To Avoid Them.

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Today what I want to share with you is my thoughts on making sure that you stay with the clients that you have, and that you have to work hard to keep nurturing that relationship.

My Mom and Dad passed an expression on to me all those years ago. Sort of stuck with me and I think it’s kind of apropos here. You gotta dance with who you brung.

Now the grammar notwithstanding, you have to please remember to take care of
your existing clients with all the passion, and attention, and devotion you can, before
you clamour and devote your energy to getting more or new clients.

Did you know, and this research has been substantiated by multiple studies, but did you know the biggest reason people change suppliers across all categories is not because of your prices. You might think they’re too high. It’s not because of your product, it’s already doing the job, but a whopping 68% leave because of your indifference to them.

That’s right! You need to show them that you care. You need to be constantly, constantly attending to them. Think of it as an ongoing dating relationship for 5, 10, 15, 20, 30 years where you are forever trying to impress the guy or the girl about your intentions and always wanting to make them feel important and vital for you.

Because the minute you stop giving them that attention, they’re going to find it
somewhere else from another supplier who is prepared to devote the time and energy to keep taking care of them.

That’s great Dennis, but we need to get new business. Yes, yes you do. And that’s vital for every company. Because no one expects you as a business to have only one client.

That’s a precarious business position to be in. When you’re reliant just on one client, one source of revenue, one product or service where your livelihood can be compromised in a heartbeat because of someone else’s decision. That’s scary.

So, nobody likes to be in that position of having only one client. No matter how large. Now, supplier number one gets to being number one because they have multiple sources of income behind them.

So when there is a slowdown somewhere, there’s an uptake somewhere else.
But for every one of those clients that you have, you must continue to nurture them, look after them while they’re in your stable or they are going to leave. I’ve seen it happen too many times because of apathy.

Not that there was anything wrong with the service or the creative efforts of the
teams that I worked with. But too often, as an ad agency, we were too busy running after new business that we didn’t tend to the business we had in hand.

That’s a terrible feeling and I don’t want you to experience that. If you already have, you understand the pain that I’m talking about. So what I want you to do is remember that your existing clients are the ones who pay the bills and they don’t want to be forgotten for a newer, shinier client that you’ve just gone out and won.

Those clients need you to show them the same attention and affection you had for them when they were a prospect. Now that they’re a client they need you to continue to show them that they are important to you.

When their needs are consistently met, when you can continue to deliver what it is you promised, they will be your best testimonials for you to win new business.

In fact I’ve had one client go out of his way to attend a pitch with us, when we were
going after new business. That’s how much he liked the service and attention that we were delivering to him. He actually came to the pitch with us to try and win some new business.

That was a wonderful reciprocal arrangement. He liked our work so much he wanted to help us get more. So please, please, please I implore you take the time to be on a wonderfully regular warm relationship with your client.

That doesn’t mean hand-holding all the time necessarily. It means showing backbone with them and for them. But it also means that you are a resource that they can count on. That you show you care, and that they can depend on you.

Until the next time this is Dennis Kelly of First Impressions Media.
Incidentally if you’d like, there’s lots more information from me on triple W First Impressions Media dot ca. https://www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca/

There’s a whole lot of free resources, and some paid ones, that you can take a peek through. I look forward to hearing from you when you’ve had a chance to visit the site. It’s triple W First Impressions Media dot ca.  https://www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca/

Many thanks. Look forward to seeing you on the next article.

You can view Video # 5 at this link:

Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising & How To Avoid Them

https://www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca/top-10-mistakes—videos-by-dennis.html

Spike of Angels Blog Readers: If you’re liking what’s being revealed so far in this Top Ten series, you’re going to love the treasures that await you in 9 Secrets of How To Improve Your Advertising.

A specialized 3CD & E-Book package distilling 3 decades of in the trenches experience to
Nine Vital secrets you need to know to catapult yourself miles ahead of your competition.

They won’t know what hit them.

9 Secrets - 3CDS
Valued at over $800, this game changer is a must have to your marketing & media library. For a limited time you won’t save 50%, not even 60%, but if you act now you will save over 75% with a time limited offer of $197. That includes HST and includes shipping to your home or office.

This is the guidebook you wish you had started with. Go get it now, before this offer expires. Click this link to order yours now.

SPECIAL FOR Spike Of Angels Blog Readers, -YOU ARE GETTING FIRST CHOICE ON THIS OFFER:

If you order two or more sets of Nine Secrets of How To Improve Your Advertising, you’ll
save $47 per set and pay only $150 each for this amazing package.

BUY HURRY, THERE ARE ONLY 100 COPIES AT THIS DISCOUNTED OFFER

Nine Secrets Of How To Improve Your Advertising

Dennis Kelly
President
First Impressions Media
www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca

Ph & Fax: 905-427-3819
E-mail: dennis@firstimpressionsmedia.ca

The Power of 26: Learn To be Consistent

So thrilled you could join me again and take a peek at Article #4 in the series of 10 on the Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising & How To Avoid Them.

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In the first three articles of this series, I think we have been very insistent at laying some groundwork for you, and I hope you’ve taken them to heart. It’s taken me 30 plus years to get to that level of understanding and you’re able to absorb it in only ten articles. Good for you. That’s fantastic.

What I want you to keep in mind moving forward is that as much as we all recognize change is all around us, and the only constant is change, we are immeasurably comforted by things that stay the same. There is a security in tradition, in style, in look, in the way things used to be.
When there is unwelcome change, we pine saying, It wasn’t like this in the old days.
We have a tremendous amount of support and stability in the familiar.
I want to make sure you don’t lose that. It is important to keep embracing and trying all of these new media and opportunities and new looks and styles.

Please don’t get so far away from your knitting that your target audience has no idea who you are, or what you represent anymore.

I want you, for Mistake Number Four – To Please Stop Changing Your Look.
(In the video version of this article, I’m still wearing the same tie. That’s by
design because you are hopefully going to associate this blue tie with my
colours of First Impressions Media, and I want that to always be a constant for you.)

Top Ten Videos Link On My Website

Remember that your customers are expecting you to have a recognizable colour scheme, a logo, a typeface. You want to build that brand. Maybe that brand is just you. Like I’m trying to do here.

Maybe it’s the product or service that you are aggressively marketing. If you keep changing your image you’ll have a hard time being remembered.
You want to build upon the equity of the look and the style and the voice that you spent so much time nurturing.

An abrupt change just for the sake of it can be absolutely devastating to a brand because suddenly all of the people who followed you, tried your product were enamored with it, stayed with it, trusted it, believed in it, they start to recoil with…what are they doing?… why are they changing their look, their stuff,  I can’t recognize them anymore.

Be careful when you make a refresh. I don’t mind you doing a little bit of tweaking to maybe change the colour and bring the look in a little bit more contemporary.

However you don’t want to come up with an entirely new image that has your customer puzzling…..what brand are you now, you’re not what I know, what I trust with you.

You’re going to start the cycle all over again of trying to build up the equity.
So here’s how you fix this. Please, please, please be consistent, keep your look the same across all media.
You are trying to establish an identity that is exclusive to you. If you don’t do anything to distinguish yourself and keep your uniqueness, you become as inconsequential as used tissue paper. Constantly changing undermines all your built up equity. You will be forever relegated to commodity status.  You will be consistently challenged on price and not on the value your product delivers. Now, that said, as I mentioned it is okay to refresh and update the look and the brand once you’ve gained a foothold.

But too frequent changes will compromise your sales, your impact, and your memorability. In the closing words of Billy Joel’s ‘Just The Way You Are”©

I couldn’t love you any better
I love you just the way you are.

So be consistent. You’re proud of the look you’ve established. Get as much mileage out of it as you can and keep placing it where your audience knows they can expect to see it.
Be well. See you in Article #5. Dennis Kelly

Spike of Angels Blog Readers: If you’re liking what’s being revealed so far in this Top Ten series, you’re going to love the treasures that await you in 9 Secrets of How To Improve Your Advertising.

A specialized 3CD & E-Book package distilling 3 decades of in the trenches experience to
Nine Vital secrets you need to know to catapult yourself miles ahead of your competition.

They won’t know what hit them.

9 Secrets - 3CDS
Valued at over $800, this game changer is a must have to your marketing & media library. For a limited time you won’t save 50%, not even 60%, but if you act now you will save over 75% with a time limited offer of $197. That includes HST and includes shipping to your home or office.

This is the guidebook you wish you had started with.                                                                Go get it now, before this offer expires. Click this link to order yours now.

SPECIAL FOR Spike of Angels Blog Readers, -YOU ARE GETTING FIRST CHOICE ON THIS OFFER:

If you order two or more sets of Nine Secrets of How To Improve Your Advertising, you’ll
save $47 per set and pay only $150 each for this amazing package.

BUY HURRY, THERE ARE ONLY 100 COPIES AT THIS DISCOUNTED OFFER9 Secrets - 3CDS

Nine Secrets Of How To Improve Your Advertising

 

The Power of 26 : Identify Your Target

Welcome along once again. This is Dennis Kelly of First Impressions Media and once more I’m thrilled you’re able to join me for a few minutes and what is article # 3 of our series of 10, on the
Top Ten Mistakes in Advertising and How to Avoid Them

Top Ten LogoAs we saw in articles 1 & 2, we talked about testing and about the critical importance of identifying each and every ad you prepare. Those should be the foundation for everything that goes out to the marketplace.

One challenge that I’ve run into on a number of times, and maybe you have too, is that my clients have considered themselves to be the target group. While that may or may not be the case, in the majority you are selling a product or service to fix someone else’s problem, and your tastes as the product or service solution are probably really different from the recipient who needs your expertise, your product your service.

I had one client who was infamously attached to a particular media, and it’s a very fine media, but it was the only one he would use because it was the only one that he felt delivered the message that he would see. My challenge to him was quite simply, Ian, please remember you are not the target audience for what we are trying to sell.

I applaud you for being so attached to this particular media but it should not be the only vehicle that we utilize. Ultimately he relented and we did use a mix including his favorite but used the mix of media to reach a broader platform and still stay within budget.
I think this is a critical component for too many advertisers. They unfortunately and unwittingly sometimes have blinders on so that they only want to use the media that they see, and recognize, and understand and appreciate and are familiar with and that’s excellent.

It’s always a good comfort zone to be using something that you know and like and trust, and importantly if you have tested and if it’s working for you keep using it. I have no quarrel with that, however I want you to make sure you don’t discount or dismiss other opportunities…….. because I never read that magazine, I don’t listen to that radio station, I never get home in time to watch TV .

You’re right! You don’t! But you are not selling to you, you were selling to the hundreds, thousands, hundreds of thousands who are interested in your product, your service and they don’t really care what would you watch. What you want to do is put your message in front of them on the platforms and the times that resonate for them.

If you have a chance to see it that’s great. You will see the commercial before it goes to air and we can give you scheduling as to when it will be on air if you want to take the time to record it and watch it later.

We can give you a list of the websites that we’ll be appearing on if you want to personally go in and look at it, that’s excellent.

But don’t dismiss other media options just because they are not familiar to you. They are familiar to your audience. Your media professionals should be able to put in front of you empirical data showing this is why you need to utilize radio in addition to magazine.
Why online platforms are going to be a powerful assist to the magazine and out of home campaign. Whatever it is, firstly it should be measurable, empirical to justify it, but importantly it has to be reaching your preferred target group. So as I mentioned at the outset, the chances are pretty good you’re not your products’ target group so don’t just rely on your gut or your instinct or your own taste in media for where to place the ad.

Goodness sake I’ve placed hundreds maybe thousands of ads in media that I know from a buyer’s standpoint and not necessarily a users standpoint. And that’s fine because like it or not, I’m not always a target group for such-and-such a product.

But I do know the right media to get your message in front of the proper target.
So when you’re developing who your audience is, please take the time to be as specific as possible. You don’t want to get so finite that you end up with a universe of twelve people and I’ve seen that happen.

But don’t pick the wrong place or the wrong target group or both and then wonder gee, why this is such a lackluster response man? Nobody is buying my new space-age shovel, my post hole diggers, my whatever. They need to know that you’re providing a solution and the solution you provide has to be what they need, and has to be in the media that they are going to respond to and act on.

One client in particular was a real sports fan and yours truly as well. Absolutely pick, pick, a sport and I’m there. But they put the ad on the sports radio network because that’s what they listen to. But their primary audience was for younger females who had little, if any interest in most of these sporting programs. It’s disappointing because it was such a powerful campaign if it had been properly directed to the right audience. So here’s what I want you to do.

To fix mistake number three, do the proper research find out who is really buying your product or service and maybe that’s a survey, a store intercept survey, an online survey, a mail out, something that genuinely tells you who is buying your product or who you think your candidates are.

You can get as specific as possible by gender and age, by income and lifestyle, and a host of other demographic details that will help you zero in on them. As much as you’re able. Please do not rely on the universe of one sampling. Well my mom liked that. Oh perfect. Love your mom and you should always love Mom, but Mom’s not necessarily buying the new car, or car ramps or the trampoline for the kids or pick an item.

That’s no to say they’re not influencers, but understand importantly who is going to be making those decisions and if it is Mom that’s great.

If it’s Dad or a Dad and Mom or if it’s the boss or if it’s the treasurer, or your financial officer in the company, you really truly need to know who you’re going after to make ads work harder, be more impactful and importantly cost you less. Yes cost you less.
You will get a better return on investment and you’ll have more to spend for future marketing if you take the time to identify who it is you want to go after, what message you want to put in front of them, and which media best reaches them.

Believe me, after three decades, I can tell you it is well worth the research to know your audience. Okay, so what you’re looking for are some characteristics which consistently define your audience then you can create the message using the right radio station or website, outdoor media, newspapers that efficiently and effectively reaches them.

Equally as I mentioned at the outset take the time to test the ad. Or multiple ads on a small scale to see what works. You’ll have a lot of coding in place and a lot of planning to do but it will pay dividends when you hit the sweet spot of the ad, or the ad in the right media or media mix that bring in the customers.

By the way, many of the local media sales reps should be able to give you detailed profiles from all of their resources to give you a clear handle on who you’re after.

Let them do some leg work. Tell them who you want to reach and in many cases it’s a very specific age and income bracket that you’re after and you want to see how well their media, whatever radio station, magazine, newspaper, it happens to be, you want to see how well their media, gets in front of those audience members and eyeballs on a regular basis and can you track how well they’re performing.

Respectfully I don’t mean just ‘Likes’ that’s a, that’s a certain, KPI that seems to be quite a hot button and that’s great. But that’s not that’s not really a true measurement of how well the product is doing. You want a measurable return on investment. You want to be able to say that we spent $1,000 for this ad and it brought in $2,000 dollars worth of new business. Perfect.

If all you’re getting is 500 likes or 35 shares etc., …that’s nice. But that’s not what your marketing should be about. It should be bringing you back at least a dollar for every dollar you put out there.

So when you are testing your ads take the time to do it on a small scale. Here’s the best analogy that I will leave you with,   you don’t need to eat a whole bowl of soup to find out if it’s salty usually one or two spoonfuls will tell you

And then you’ll decide whether or not you want to eat the rest of it or move on to something else. And with that I bid you adieu for number three. I look forward to seeing you on in Article # 4.

You can view the Video of this text (Article # 3- Identify Your Target )at these links:

Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising & How To Avoid Them

(https://www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca/top-10-mistakes—videos-by-dennis.html)
OR

Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising and How To Avoid Them – Video # 3 of 10 https://youtu.be/nDUI1dTQNqQ

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Dennis Kelly
President
First Impressions Media
www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca
Ph & Fax: 905-427-3819
E-mail: dennis@firstimpressionsmedia.ca

The Power of 26- The Power of Planning

Greetings once again and thank you for joining me. Last week was my Return To Form, my first contribution in sometime. I hope you enjoyed it.

A successful end result in any endeavour can usually be traced back to good planning.

What do we want to do? What can we afford? What tools or talent pool do we already have? What do we need to bring in? How long will it take? Are we able to manage this?

That’s not to say your success won’t be without challenges and things to overcome.
But taking the time to plan, research, evaluate your resources, test and keep trying will eliminate a lot of pitfalls and keep you from going down too many dead ends and blind alleys.

Earlier I advised I have completed a series of videos and articles related to my work. Today we’re going to step into article number two in our series of 10, for the
Top 10 Mistakes In Advertising and How to Avoid Them.

Top Ten Logo
Article #2 – Plan Your Campaign Timing Carefully

As we saw in article number one, Testing remains front and centre The most important and powerful and effective thing you can do to help your advertising. Regardless of the budget, the message, the media placement you make.

You need to test and test and keep testing because there is going to be an opportunity for improvement, however modest, in each and every ad. And those cumulative changes can be absolute gold showing you what your customers want and need, and are prepared to put their hand up for it.

Now, you have testing ingrained and under your skin and it’s going to be
part and parcel of every ad moving forward, correct ? Good. I’m thrilled to learn that you’re onboard with that.

Mistake Number Two that I’ve seen too often through the years is that far too many advertisers are jumping in at any time without rhyme and reason wondering if this is the
best seasonality to be in front of the target. Certainly I understand very few advertisers can afford to be there all the time, running their campaign at full throttle, and that’s not unexpected.

You have to have some rather deep pockets to keep an ongoing campaign all of the
time. You can quickly make yourself broke if you keep marketing, but not testing to see if the ads are working.

The whole idea is salesmanship. And that goes back to John E. Kennedy in 1904.
Hi mantra was that your advertising is ‘Salesmanship in Print’ and so what you want to do is make sure that every single ad you have out there gives you the opportunity to make a sale. That’s kinda why you’re marketing isn’t it?

Regardless of what you’re selling, product or service, you want to sell something.
So make sure every ad is a sales opportunity for you.

Maybe this is your baptism in to Planning. Welcome. Here we go:
Here’s what I’d like you to do. Maybe some of you are already doing this and if so that’s fantastic because it will give you a much better understanding of your spending and your planning.
The biggest challenge for many advertisers is not anticipating when their best sales periods are going to be and so they’re jumping at every opportunity for every well-intended media sales person, who comes through the

In the majority they are all very good people and I have some wonderful relationships with many of my sales reps going back decades, which is fantastic. They have become true allies for me in making a campaign that works incredibly hard for my clients.
I applaud them and I continue to do business with them.

But understand their mandate is to sell. To sell the advertising space or time or placement. And they want to see you do well but they also want to see some money.
It is in their interest to get you to advertise as often as possible with their
publication, their website, their outdoor board, their radio station, and kudos to them, they should be. That can really stretch a budget if you’re trying to be there all the time and you’re not sure what you should be doing. So here’s a simple thing that will really help crystallize for you what your timings should be like.

Planning: I want you to map out an entire year on a spreadsheet. It can be any fiscal if
you prefer but for simplistic sake I try to stick to a calendar, January to December.

I want you to pick any two sales periods. If you have more, that’s great but two is easier
to work with. The times where you have some sales history showing you your best months, your products’ seasonal applicability will determine the key sales potential period.

So let’s say April and May for spring and then November and December for winter are your best sales carrots. What I want you to do is devote up to 50% of your annual ad budget to support these two windows.

That’s where perhaps upwards of 80% of your business is coming from so you should
be giving those two key periods the best opportunity to maximize your exposure. Put most of your marketing muscle in there because they are driving the majority of your revenue. Now these are the key times that you want to be making sure your name is out there on an ongoing basis. They will get your most attention and your most support.
The remaining eight months of the year will share the remaining 50% of the budget and perhaps you devote 30% to six months and 20% to the remaining two months.

You can do that up as you feel comfortable, and your cash flow allows. But what this does and it’s been my experience, that it gives you sustained presence to have some modest exposure so you’re always on your prospects radar.

You don’t have to be running full-throttle all the time but it allows you to
ramp up your presence in the four heaviest months split between spring and winter.

Then you have maybe six months that are second tier and that need some increased support. But they’re not the same demand period so you don’t have to be with your foot on the pedal quite as aggressively through those periods.

The intensity is not as critical, as your key periods. Then the lightest months for some advertisers that’s, you know, the summer period, June July maybe August when people are at last vacationing or not really in an aggressive mode of work because the outdoor beckons, those might be your lighter periods.
Please keep some spending out there. You don’t want to lose all of the equity and all of the awareness that you’ve built up through your spring periods.

So you want to have some ongoing presence, however modest, just to make sure that your key audience knows that you’re still in there pitching. Your lightest months can just be a sustaining presence. Thus the times where you have some sales history showing you your best months, your products’ seasonal applicability will determine the key sales potential period.

This is only one of many deployment strategies, as I’ve discovered. I’ve had the great good fortune of working with both large and small agencies and some advertisers who had very modest budgets while others have very deep pockets.

You don’t have to spend more than the competition. Certainly it helps, it helps to increase your media exposure when you have multiple opportunities there, but you just have to spend smarter, at the right times.

Planning means you take the time to map out on a calendar what your key sales periods are to maximize your sales messaging.  The value of ad planning cannot be overstated.

Heads-Up:  this is probably the single biggest tip I can give you.
Importantly, Plan Early. Planning months in advance you will save yourself an enormous amount of grief but more importantly you will save an enormous amount of money. So take the time to plan out your scheduling and spend smarter.

It’s been my privilege to have you along today. Thank you I look forward to you joining me in Article #3

You can view Video # Two at these links:

Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising & How To Avoid Them

(https://www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca/top-10-mistakes—videos-by-dennis.html)

OR

Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising and How To Avoid Them – Video # 2 of 10
https://youtu.be/-V2oRDTnf4Q

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Dennis Kelly
President
First Impressions Media
www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca

Ph & Fax: 905-427-3819
E-mail: dennis@firstimpressionsmedia.ca

 

 

The Power of 26 – A Return to Form

This is a wonderfully refreshing Homecoming. Whenever you may see this, thank you for coming back.  I know I haven’t written in a while, but heck, neither has Shakespeare, and we were in grade school together.

Truly this is a wonderful in and out platform and I’m grateful for the exposure and the flexibility to chime in when I can, or not. It’s about 16 months since we said hello. I’ve missed you. But I’ve kept busy. Other writings have been required. I am going to share these in sequence as they are among the best ‘Professional’ writings I believe I’ve composed.

Some followers know I am a Media guy. Planning and buying advertising space and time in newspapers, radio, on-line, TV, outdoor and elsewhere as needed. A professional shopper negotiating for best advertising value for all my clients.

Recently I composed a series of the Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising and How To Avoid Them.  These have come full circle. Starting as Ten bullet points, to becoming a series of Ten videos posted on YouTube, my website, Linked In, then audio on Soundcloud, and transcribed to text to be picked up by an OnLine industry magazine and now as full fledged articles from 800 to 1,800 words each.

Your kind indulgence, I shall begin posting these perhaps once or twice a week.

I truly discovered The POWER of 26 in this exercise. I hope you enjoy the style and content and as always you are welcome to share and refer. These were taken from my videos, so you may encounter references which reflect that.

Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising & How To Avoid Them
Text from Video #1 – Ad Testing & Tracking

Greetings and thanks very much for joining me today. This is Dennis Kelly of First Impressions Media.

I’m so delighted you could join me today. It strikes me that there are quite a number of opportunities out there for you to showcase your product or service using just about any form of media, and that’s fantastic. There’s, as you have probably discovered,
certainly no shortage of media players and opportunities. However, what I found the most powerful is utilizing all of those resources to their respective individual and then collective advantages.

Sometimes campaigns work wonderfully well using the more traditional radio, television, newspaper, magazine, maybe out of home advertising. More recently some advertisers have had some success with one or more of the social media platforms and that’s terrific. I think they should all be embraced and all form part of your media mix.

Please make no mistake that it should genuinely be a mix of media because you never know exactly which particular component is going to pull the trigger and get your target group to say…..That’s for me, that’s the product that I want!

Your service is exactly what I’m after. You want to make sure you give yourself every opportunity to be seen and to be heard to promote whatever it is, whatever service or product you have out there. You want to stand head and shoulders above the crowd, in front of as many of the right crowds as possible.

So, what I’d like to share with you starting today is a series of ten of the Top Ten Mistakes in Advertising that I’ve seen through these three decades of being a professional media planner and buyer, and share some secrets and some tips on how to avoid getting into those very same advertising challenges.

So we’re going to space this out as a series of 10, done one at a time, today being the intro will perhaps be a tad longer I do hope you will you will indulge me but let’s getstarted with Mistake Number One.

And you see ladies and gentlemen, the single biggest mistake I see repeated over and over and over again is the failure to Test and Measure your ads. All too often too many advertisers simply write a cheque for the ads in the newspaper, online, TV, radio, regardless of the media and simply hope for the best.

Many of you will attest, hope marketing really doesn’t pay an awful lot of bills.
You wouldn’t put your own product, tablelamps, lawnmowers, keyboards, post hole diggers, floor tiles, into the marketplace without putting them through an extensive battery of tests to see if they can live up to your standards.

You’re testing the ad that sells the product and, unfortunately, maybe you’ve encountered this yourself, or you know friends of a friend of a friend who had this happen to them.But they put all of their muscle into one media without finding out how effective it could be on a smaller scale and all they heard was crickets. That’s a devastating sound when you’re in advertising, so here’s what I want you to do.

Here is how you fix this: To identify each and every ad you place in any and all media.  What? Dennis, identify everything? Absolutely!

You see, what you want to do is see how well every single piece of creative is performing in each magazine, website, leaderboard, big box, outdoor ad, in every radio commercial. You should have, an identifier, a tag of any description that’s exclusive to that ad so you can go back and say we invested X number of dollars in this media and it brought us two returns, five returns, a thousand returns, whatever.

The performance helps you to know exactly how well that worked. What it does is it helps you on the future campaigns by identifying for you what has been your best performer. It challenges you to come up with even better ads, better media mixes, better dollar spending, because now you know what’s performing.

Dear readers this is not new. Nor is it rocket science. But it takes time and energy
and patience which is, unfortunately, a little bit lacking in too many arenas. So when you’re preparing your ads make sure that all of that creative excellence that’s been developed has a chance to be evaluated and measured. You want to go back and track it so you can see how engaged your audiences are, how many times did they purchase the product, how many times did they go to the website, how many times that they raised their hand to say,
More. Hey I’m over here. I really like what you’re selling.
Show me more, tell me more. Give me some more information.

That’s what you want to deliver. So code your ad with the coupon exclusive to that campaign or magazine. Create a different URL or even a 1-800 number that can be tracked and monitored for every single ad.

You want to see how each ad is doing. Then, only then can you tell if it’s
working and giving you a return on the investment.

If it sounds like an awful lot of work, well you’re right. Yes. You’re right, it is. But you are setting a template that will help you refine every ad moving forward. And if you get it right, right out of the gate, then kudos to you and Congratulations.

But in the majority there’s going to be some refinement, some improvements, some
opportunity to tweak subsequent ads that says we, we know we’ve got to improve this line or this copy.

There is a famous advertising gentleman by the name of John Caples who was an aggressive and prolific advertising tester, way before the Internet came onboard.
He discovered that through all of his testing, one ad, by changing the headline performed 19 and 1/2 times better than every other ad that he had produced.

Same product, same newspaper, same service, same price point, all he did was change the headline and by changing multiple times he found one that struck gold.
You want a good return? Two times, three times better? Try nineteen and a half times better! That’s the difference that testing delivers.
Please remember when you’re testing there is no failure, there’s only results.

So here’s the strategy you might like, to give yourself a better return on investment.
One enterprising client in my history treated it this way. Because he came from a financial background each ad to him was considered different mutual fund in his portfolio and he named them before they went into the media. Now, because they were coded in names he liked, he was able to remember them but he was able to soon see how well each of his investments, as he put it, was performing. He would put more money against the ads which were performing, and changed any ads which were underperforming to a new one, to keep testing. To make sure of any money coming in he watched very carefully all of the money that was going out.

So my message to you for tip number one is to Track Every Single Ad you prepare.
It’s the only way to accurately measure what’s working.

Thank you I look forward to you seeing you on video number two.

You can view Video # One at these links:

Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising & How To Avoid Them

(https://www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca/top-10-mistakes—videos-by-dennis.html)

OR

Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising and How To Avoid Them – Video # 1 of 10

 

 

SPIKE OF ANGELS BLOG READERS: If you’re liking what’s being revealed so far in this Top Ten series, you’re going to love the treasures that await you in 9 Secrets of How To Improve Your Advertising.

A specialized 3CD & E-Book package distilling 3 decades of in the trenches experience to
Nine Vital secrets you need to know to catapult yourself miles ahead of your competition. They won’t know what hit them.

Valued at over $800, this game changer is a must have to your marketing & media library. For a limited time you won’t save 50%, not even 60%, but if you act now you will save over 75% with a time limited offer of $197. That includes HST and includes shipping to your home or office.

Go get it now, before this offer expires. Click this link to order yours now.

SPECIAL FOR The Power of 26 Readers, -YOU ARE GETTING FIRST CHOICE ON THIS OFFER:

If you order two or more sets of Nine Secrets of How To Improve Your Advertising, you’ll save $47 per set and pay only $150 each for this amazing package.

BUY HURRY, THERE ARE ONLY 100 COPIES AT THIS DISCOUNTED OFFER

A Special Offer To Readers Of The Power of 26
https://www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca/for-readers-of-the-power-of-26-blog.html

Thank you. It feels amazing to be back here again.  Be well.

 

Dennis Kelly
President
First Impressions Media
www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca

Ph & Fax: 905-427-3819
E-mail: dennis@firstimpressionsmedia.ca

 

 

The Power of 26 -Endless Opportunities

‘It was a knockout blow. A punch so overwhelming I didn’t get back on my feet for fourteen years. And to deliver a blow like that, they went to a lot of trouble.’

So begins the powerful opening of the international bestseller entitled Papillon.
The story of convicted felon Henri Charriere who was sentenced to life imprisonment in the penal colonies of French Guyana for a murder he steadfastly denied every committing.

Recently I re-read this novel. I was as thunderstruck with the powerful vocabulary of
Mr. Charriere now as I was nearly 30 years ago in the first read. His richly detailed and highly powerful scenes of the full panorama of human emotion of love, fear, torture, betrayal, murder, brutality, solitude, courage, passion, escape, and redemption make it a book bigger than its pages.

Recounting the drama he lived, he invites you in, moment by moment, where you can feel the brutality of the unrepentant guards, the hostility of several wardens and the incredible generosity of other gatekeepers, strangers and fellow inmates.

While it was ultimately made into a blockbuster of a film with Steve McQueen and
Dustin Hoffman, the raw energy he emits from the pages is nothing short of electrifying.
No film can ever do justice to the range and diversity and intensity of feelings and experiences Papillon shares with us. He recounts with riveting narrative the amazing life and near death he endured in his incarceration.

I believe it is this unfiltered delivery of the message that always appeals to the writer within me. Someone who can make words come alive while teetering on the edge of death is a skilled wordsmith indeed.

There is no limit too on the capacity of the writer to keep us enthralled in their storyline regardless of the subject, if it is well told. That is the hallmark of any writing.
Be interesting, provocative, informative, outrageous, coy, raging,  a demon at the keyboard spinning golden stories of business, fiction, fantasy, adventure…..just don’t be boring. Grab your reader by the eyeballs and don’t let go.

As near as I’m aware, Mr. Charierre had little formal education. He was not illiterate, but he was neither a University Graduate.  Yet his storytelling captivated the world in multiple languages in 1969 and his legacy lives on through his words.

There remain endless opportunities to tell your story, make sure The Power of 26 is put to good use.

Incidentally, several followers have kindly inquired about my other writing for my work. The best sequeway I can offer is for you to take a look at my e-mail series of 57 Media Spikes (https://www.firstimpressionsmedia.ca/free-trial–57-media-spikes.html)

It is also available in completed book form and you can secure a copy quickly through Amazon by clicking  (http://tinyurl.com/57-Spikes)

Will it be as compelling a read as Papillon? One can hope. What I can tell you is it is written with the same passion as Mr. Charriere, but without the brutality endured!!

 

The Power of 26 – A Rebirth Everyday With Words

We remain extraordinarily fortunate to live in this day and age.

Our lives are so richly blessed with food, families, possessions, technologies, healthcare, pleasures and freedoms that it is a utopia by many standards.  Not for a moment do I dismiss the challenges many of us equally face with employment, sickness, drug uses, tragedies, accidents, political unrest, war zones and the ever volatile economy.

However it strikes me that each day is an opportunity for new successes. However large or small. Personally and /or professionally. We look to and find and celebrate those events with great delight. Birthday (it is always someone’s birthday)- no matter what day of the year. Anniversary. Job Promotion. Arrival of a new child. A family member safely returned home from travels. You finally got through that office project which had you stymied for weeks. Maybe, after all your blogs, somebody noticed enough to say something.

Congratulations. Well Done. Atta Boy. You Go Girl. YOU Did It!. Kudos. So Proud of You. Nobody Deserves It More. You Worked Hard For It. How Fabulous. Welcome Home.

Every one of those accolades can get you recharged. Fired up again. Okay, what’s next?
I can do this. The powerful element here is they are sincere, warm, genuine recognitions of all your time, energy, effort and it was so simple for the sayer to say it.

Not long paragraphs of stories and mountains climbed. Just a few simple, powerful words that can reinvigorate even most worn spirit. I express this in the hope that it perks you up to share a Well Done with a co-worker. Applaud and say Congratulations when a neighbour gets a new job. Those are very modest but powerful ways to boost the spirit of those closest to you. And it doesn’t have to come from your wallet.

Nearly every week, I have an electronic consult or phone call with a good friend and colleague in my industry. And every week when I praise him for always being there to support me, he comes back with a few inspiring words that make me want to try again harder next time.

Everyday can be a rebirth like that. It really only takes a few words to deliver emotion
that can transform lives. I am always amazed, and a bit saddened, that the best words we have for each other, all too often ,come when the person who most needs them can no longer hear them. Funerals are the minutes when a lifetime of emotion comes rushing out but the key listener is hearing from a different realm.

As I write this, the world mourns the recent loss of the musical artist Prince. Only in the wake of his passing have I learned what a generous and talented musician he was.
The tributes pour in from everywhere. How amazing and wonderful and supportive.

For all his on stage persona, I hear from reports he was a gentle and appreciative soul. Wouldn’t it be nice to hear some of the words of praise about how good, kind, smart, caring etc., you are while you’re still here to hear them?  Then maybe consider using the Power of 26 everyday to tell the people closest to you just how much they mean to you.

We remain extraordinarily fortunate to live in this day and age. Yet for all that we accomplish, nothing, but nothing starts without the words.  My business thrives on it.
So do thousands of others. Don’t let another day pass you by without realizing and using The Power of 26 to brighten someone else’s day. It will do the same to you at the same time.

The Power of 26- Write Like You Speak

To capture someone’s attention you tend to RAISE your voice so they can hear your invitation to pay attention to you.

Try doing the same with your writing. Whether that effort is for a book, an article, an ad, a memo to your colleagues, the boss, write like you speak. Give emphasis to your written word as powerfully as you would to your spoken word. To do that, simply write like you speak.

Why do we feel the need to be convoluted in our writing when it’s so simple to be clear and concise

Ie: When constructing a new underground channel where the waterway to the house would be directed, the workers were obliged to use hand held earth-moving devices.

Translation: When digging a new trench for plumbing, the men used shovels.

We stumble over ourselves finding new and old and cumbersome ways to communicate to our audience instead of telling them directly in simple language. Your message has much more impact if it has short, snappy paragraphs. Ideas that flow logically from one line to the next, to the next to the next until, son of a gun, before you know it, you’ve read the whole page.

Here’s a neat test you can give yourself. It’s painless. It’s private, and it will show you just how good a writer you are. Trust me, you are better than you think you are.

1) Get a blank piece of paper and a pen (pencil). OR
Open a new page in your Word program.

2) Get yourself a timer. On your computer. Or a watch, clock, etc, one that you can set for 5 minutes.

3) I want you to begin writing a story on any topic you want. Movies, drugs, toys, food, sex, birthdays, etc. Whatever you want. There are only two rules.

A) The first rule is the first line must contain three words: orange, sidewalk, and umbrella.

B) The second rule is you have only five minutes.

Now, begin writing- or typing your story, and make it as creative and colourful as you like, but write it like your telling me about it over a couple of beers at our local pub.  The idea here is that you are writing as though we are having a conversation, and your are telling me all about it. But you are breathless and can’t wait to get exciting news to me within 5 minutes.

NOW – Go write. I’ll wait right here.

Perfect. How’d you do? See, I told you. It’s very powerful, painless, and exhilarating to discover how amazing you already are in your day to day speaking. Remember, every great speech, the ones that history has remembered, recorded and referred to, every one of them started by being written, before being spoken.

Write like you speak. The Power of 26 is always there.

Dennis Kelly

dennis@firstimpressionsmedia.ca

P.S. If you’d like to send me whatever you write, at the above e-mail address, I’d love to see it.

I won’t share it with anyone, but I will send you a complimentary copy of one of several copywriting or advertising books in my possession, just for sending it.