Successful Dentist Advertising #4Published by Galen Stilson
Direct Marketing Copywriter/Consultant
Relationship Marketing (for dentists) a speciality
Here's hoping you are having your happiest holiday season ever! HOW TO DRAW ATTENTION TO YOUR NEWSPAPER AD Your newspaper ad has ZERO (zip, nada, no) chance of succeeding IF your prospect doesn't read it. And to read it, s/he first has to notice it. To get your ad noticed in a sea of newspaper ads can sometimes be a real challenge. But there are a few "tricks" (graphic and placement techniques) you can use to draw the reader's eye directly to your ad ... even when surrounded by a full page of attention-seeking competitive ads.
Here are just a few ... 1. Surround your ad with white space. For example, if you are running a 4 x 6 inch ad, purchase a 6 x 8 inch space and center it in the middle ... leaving an inch or so of nothing but white space around it. On a page full of ads, the reader's eye will be drawn directly to your. 2. Use a distinctive border or frame around your ad. There are any number of unique borders/frames you can try ... with any thickness variation you want. The idea is to have it be noticeably different. Of course, you want to make sure that the border doesn't get so wild that it detracts from your message. 3. Angle your ad. Where all ads are set straight up and down, have the main section of your ad tilted 10 to 20 degrees. I sometimes do this via a "memo type" note set angled on a base ad. But you can simply angle the entire ad just a little. 4. Large headlines or photos/illustrations can work ... if they are large enough to stand out when compared to the other ads with which they are competing. Also, if you use a photo, you might angle it within the ad. Often, I'll take a single word out of the headline ... or use a single "action" word that leads directly into the headline ... and enlarge it for attention. 5. Ad size. The larger the ad, the more it will be noticed. However, the extra readership may not pay for the extra cost of the large ad. 6. Unusual shapes/bursts/reverses. Any shape which "looks" different is likely to draw the reader's eye. A reverse (white print on a black background) can do it if there aren't a lot of other reverses on the page. A burst of some sort (a many pointed "star-like" illustration usually with copy set in the center) will work if there aren't many others used on the page. 7. Stay out of the gutter. The "gutter" is that section of the paper where the innermost columns abut the center fold of each page. Why don't you want your ad in that area? Because studies show it gets noticed less than any other part of the page. 8. Ask for ad placement next to editorial material. Ads that come in contact with editorial stories get noticed more readily than ads surrounded with other ads. And the more "important" the story, the more they get noticed. 9. If you offer something FREE (evaluation, consultation, x-rays, transportation, etc.) ... be sure that word is highlighted and stands out. Yes, I know some dentists find the word "free" distasteful and prefer NO CHARGE ... but "free" has more pulling power than "no charge." So if YOU can mentally handle it, use it. 10. Take the ad you have created -- or the ad you intend to use -- and overlay it on the various pages of the newspaper where you intend to run it. Then ask yourself, "does this stand out ... does it attract the eye?" If it looks like all the others (size, layout, type style, etc.), make some changes. Be bold. Be different. Be successful. There are many more attention-getting techniques and tactics which I'll touch on in future issues. But the use of one or more of these should help you make your ad stand out. Of course, once you get the reader to notice your ad, it must deliver a message with which the reader can relate. More on that in future issues also. If you have any questions, feel free to e-mail me. I'll either try to answer them directly -- or -- try to work them into a future issue. Best ... Galen ************* >> DO A FRIEND A FAVOR ... If you have a dentist friend who might enjoy receiving this e-mail newsletter -- or who might be interested in my soon-to-be-offered ad subscription service -- send me his/her e-mail address and I'll be happy to give them a free newsletter subscription ... and provide them with full info on the ad subscription service when it's ready. If you're more comfortable having them contact me, then provide them with my e-mail address. Either way, thanks in advance. >> ANOTHER REMINDER ... If you haven't e-mailed me yet to say you want to continue receiving this free newsletter, don't wait to do so. If you wait, you're likely to miss out on lots of good stuff. Conversely, if you absolutely don't want to continue receiving it, let me know that also so I can try to avoid sending you any correspondence. Thanks. >> AD SUBSCRIPTION SERVICE UPDATE ... I expect it to be ready within the next two-to-three weeks (if not sooner). If you want to receive information about it -- and have yet to tell me that you do -- then e-mail me now and advise me that you'd like to get complete details when ready. As mentioned before, dentists who participate will get exclusive use rights to my ads in the newspaper of their choice. I'm trying to put this together so that every participant will enjoy maximum profit potential. Let me know if you're interested. >> SPECIAL Response/Profit Critique OFFER ... Due to numerous recent requests, I've decided to offer a special service to readers of "Successful Dentist Advertising." If you have an ad that you would like to produce more quality patients for you ... send it to me and I'll put it through my one-of-a-kind Response/Profit Critique. What can you expect from the critique? A comprehensive top-to-bottom evaluation of your ad that's designed to help you fix its weaknesses. Simply put, you'll get a series of recommendations and suggestions on how to make it work better. From beginning to end I look for response mistakes ... from errors of omission to errors of commission. From major goofs to subtle oversights. From offer and copy to graphics and layout. From front to back, back to front, outside in, inside out. If the ad needs an overhaul, I'll tell you how I would restructure it. If it just needs a little tweaking, I'll tell you what and how I'd tweak. And if it's one of those rare ads that's near-perfect, I'll still make some suggestions. What's the cost? Usually $295. But for you ... a subscriber of "Successful Dentist Advertising" ... the fee is only $95 per ad if you act before January 15, 1998. After that the price reverts back to $295. How long will the critique take? Usually about two weeks from the time I receive the ad. But because of this special offer, please give me three weeks. Is there a limit on the number of ads you'll do for that price? Yes. No more than two ads per dentist at the $95 price. If you'd like to take advantage of this special offer, send your ad(s) and a check for $95 per ad, to ... Galen Stilson, P.O. Box 1075, Tarpon Springs, FL 34688. If you have questions, you can e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 813-786-1411 or fax me at 813-785-7049. Be sure to include your mailing address and phone number so that I can reach you if I have questions. CRITIQUE TESTIMONIALS ... Since this is the first time I've offered my critique service to dentists, I don't have dentist testimonials to offer you. But here are a couple from my direct marketing clients: "Galen, your critique was invaluable ... we have incorporated virtually all of your suggestions. Anyone who passes up your critique is making an expensive mistake." Penelope Wickham, Mktg. Dir. "American Demographics" magazine. "Good news, Galen ... The dm package I sent you recently had pulled just a little over 1% response. We created a new one using your critique recommendations and our response has picked up to almost 4%. Thanks so much for your help." Cynthia Young, President Wentworth Publishing, Inc. (The Doctor's Press) "Galen ... Just wanted to thank you for the terrific critique. We incorporated almost all of your recommendations. The result: Registrations for the conferences are up dramatically, despite the tough economic times for our physician customers. I'll be calling soon to discuss a new project." John Schwartz, M.D., President Continuing Medical Education, Inc. DON'T WAIT. If this critique service interests you ... send your ads and check today so that you can start pulling in more -- and higher quality -- patients. Remember, the deadline for this special opportunity is January 15, 1998. Don't miss it. Happy Holidays! Galen
Copyright 1998 by Galen Stilson. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited.