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Making Your Online Ad More Effective

All too often businesses are excited to jump into online advertising without a complete plan. They think that they will be able to track the results of their ad and all too often they are disappointed when they don’t get the results they want.

Here are three tips to help make your online ads more effective:

#1 Target the ad.
Rather than take the broad based, send your message to everyone approach, try defining your audience so that you can avoid paying for customers who probably aren’t going to use your services. You can target based on:    

  • Location: Build general interest within a certain geographic area instead of reaching for a huge radius.
  • Demographic: Place your ad in places where your customers, and people like them, are looking. Target your ads based on the specific demographics of people who purchase from you – age, sex, income, etc.
  • Retargeting: While this won’t bring you new business, if you keep talking to your established clients your message won’t be forgotten when they are ready to purchase again.

#2 Banner Design.
Once your have a targeting strategy in place, you will want to make sure that you use banner ads that will appeal to your target audience. Be consistent with all of your marketing elements. Always make sure that your website, banners and landing pages use the same elements.
For an effective banner make sure to include the following:

  • Use a button. Have a well-designed button with a succinct call-to-action. This will boost your click-thru-rate and conversion rate (the number of people doing what you spelled out in your call-to-action).
  • Keep it Simple. A simple design with a clear message and brand is most effective.
  • Try an A/B test. Using different creatives, try multiple banners to find your most effective message and highest conversion rate.

#3 Landing Pages
You can get a lot of click thru traffic from your ad but if you don’t have a good landing page optimized to capture and ask for a conversion from each visitor you won’t get good results from your ad campaign.

Best practices for landing pages include some of the following:

  • Keep your landing pages simple
  • Have an explicit call to action for each visitor.
  • Keep sign up buttons and lead forms at the top of the page. Don’t make people scroll down.
  • Try placing videos on each landing page to increase conversion rates
  • Make your offer and/or value proposition clear and honest.
  • Don’t forget to include the URL of the landing page on all print ads

Find the right target market for your ad, do a good job with the design and message, and then send your clients to effective landing pages and you will be well on your way to a successful advertising campaign.

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