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  • Amanda Paterson

How To Create A Compelling Ad: A 7-Step Checklist

So, you want to create an ad/flyer/postcard/brochure that makes you money.

The key to conversion? There's 7. Here they are.

(Psssst. If you don't have time to read the whole article, that's ok. Read the titles, save the article for when you might need it, and scroll to the end for a pretty sweet offer.)

1) Have you selected a SINGLE Ideal Client to market to?

Most ads try to grab the attention of ALL people. But, when we try to sell to everyone, we end up being generic, bland and 'just like everyone else'. To get noticed, we must speak directly to your Ideal Client (not the masses). Make it sound like we're talking to him. To her. The Individual.

For example: if you are a weight loss coach, instead of creating an ad for men, women, young and old... Talk to the 35-year-old-mom-who-can't-seem-to-lose-the-baby-weight.... OR talk to the 45-year-old-man-who-wants-to-achieve-peak-performance. Do NOT try to build an ad for both individuals. They have different desires and end goals. So, what if you want to appeal to both Ideal Clients? Build two ads.

2) Have you created a COMPELLING offer?

Now that we know who we're talking to, you need to compel him or her to learn more. So, we attempt to join the conversation going on in his or her head. Anticipate what it is that he or she needs right NOW and try to move this person one step closer to making a buying decision.

Is she on the hunt for the best fitness coach? If so - provide her with a list bootcamp dates happening in her area, AND compel her with a free class to give you a shot.

Is he thinking about selling his home? If so - provide him with a phone number he can call for a FREE over-the-phone home assessment so he can find out how much his home may be worth. No strings attached.

In today's marketing space, compelling offers often come in the form of a FREE e-book, FREE worksheet, FREE nominal item at your brick and mortar, $X off gift certificate when you register for the newsletter, FREE recorded message with more detailed information, FREE consumers' guide to selecting a service provider...

3) Does your headline tell the ENTIRE STORY?

Make sure at first glance your prospect is clear what they GET, or what they have access to, or what they're thinking about.

The headline is what pulls them in. The body copy is where you can go into more details.

4) Does your ad or handout LOOK LIKE NEWS? Or does it look like an ad?

Our brains are hardwired to ignore advertising. We continuously are blasted with commercials and advertisements. All. Day. Long. We reject the vast majority of them without even knowing it.

So, if your ad blends in with the news that surrounds it... You fool your prospects brain. You sneak past the bouncer and subliminally let your brand inside their head. For example, in a magazine or publication - design your 'advertisement' to look like an editorial. Disguise it to look like the publisher is highlighting your product/service. This means, keep your logo small and not the focal point. It also means - TEACH your prospect something.

5) Are you using conversational language and tone?

Stop using corporate jargon. Just stop doing it right now. Whether you're B2B or B2C - you're still selling to a human. And all those words like "world-class" and "exceptional quality" and "unsurpassed customer service" doesn't really mean that much to us anymore.

Instead, talk to your prospect like they are standing in front of you. Be real with them. Not robotic.

6) Is it absolutely clear what you WANT THEM TO DO?

Do NOT forget to have a clear call to action. Make it clear and easy to follow. One Ad = One Purpose.

7) Have you told them where to go to learn more information FOR FREE (without having to talk to a salesperson)?

Send them to call a free recorded message. Send them to your website. You want to compel them to learn more without any commitment factor. We're not convincing them to marry us on the first date (or buy from us RIGHT THIS SECOND).

Thanks to Dean Jackson from the I LOVE MARKETING podcast for this valuable checklist.

So, you made it to the bottom! What's my sweet offer? If you have an ad that you're about to publish, or one that you've used in the past, and would like to know if you can make it even better > E-mail it to me and I'll critique it for free.

Sometimes, all you need is an extra set of eyes to pick up on small tweaks that end up making you millions.

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