Strategies to make TV advertising work as part of your marketing campaign
You may have heard that Television marketing is dead, but the truth is TV advertising isn’t going anywhere. This generation’s marketers may think of TV Advertising as a tactic from the past, but the best advertisers know how to make TV Ads work for them. This article is meant to explain how to run TV ads effectively and create a positive ROI.
Table of Contents
Test with your audience.
If you already have an established audience, then test your ad on that audience first. If this is not possible, drive traffic to your website using another platform before running your commercial so you can see if they will engage based on demographics alone. You don’t want to pay for prime-time commercial placement only to find out nobody’s watching at that hour or watching due to aggressive promotions.
Once you’ve got a strong idea of who is watching, then start targeting your prime time audience. Always have a clear call to action. Make sure people know what to do next or where to go from the commercial break so they don’t tune out halfway through. Finally, only run the ad when it’s relevant so you can maximize your budget and yield positive results from day one. Avoid crappy banner ads by testing multiple versions and picking out the most effective one before running them all at once.
Tailor messaging to age group and location.
Focus on appealing to distinct audiences rather than trying to appeal to everyone with one generic ad that will likely be ignored anyway. The more specific you are with your TV Ads, the higher chance you have of engaging your audience. Some audiences you can target include:
- Men and Women between the ages of 18-35
- These individuals may be young and single; reach them with dating ads.
- This age group is also working to make a living; target them with your product or service.
- For this demographic, always focus on entertainment and fun since they may prioritize other things over saving up for emergencies.
- Males between the ages of 35-55
- Most likely married with children; target men who want their kids to succeed. They like family values but will spend money to give their families what they need (e.g., batteries).
- Advertising cars in prime time won’t work for this group. They’re more likely to buy a car after they get home from work and on weekends, so advertise accordingly.
- A male product aimed at the middle-aged man would be protein bars or energy drinks since they need their machine running smoothly while working hard during the day.
- Females between the ages of 35-55
- Most likely married with children; target women who want their kids to succeed. They like family values but will spend money to give their families what they need (e.g., clothes).
- Advertising cars in prime time won’t work for this group either. They’re more likely to buy a car after they get home from work and on weekends, so advertise accordingly.
- A female product aimed at the middle aged woman would be a kids’ fashion line or weight loss shakes since they may have just come back from the gym, but want to reward themselves with something nice for being so dedicated.
- Men and women over 55 years old
- Most likely retired; target them with your “senior” savings plans since they’re planning their golden years (e.g., life insurance).
- Make sure not to sexualize this group in any way because older people like to feel respected.
Now that you know what audience you want to reach and who is watching when it’s time for prime programming, select a few TV shows in your target demographic and test how well they do with your ad. The shows you choose will depend on where your product or service falls in the market so choose wisely.
For male products for example, you could advertise on “The Big Bang Theory” because the show has a high-income demographic watching. This show may also have a lower than average 18-35 year old viewership, so your ad will contribute to the older demographics as well.
For women’s products, you could advertise on “2 Broke Girls” because the show has a low-income demographic watching and the majority of the audience is women aged 18-55. This show may also have a higher than average viewership of 35-55 year old women, so your ad will contribute to the older demographics as well.
For family products, you could advertise on “Modern Family” because this show has a high-income demographic watching and the majority of the audience is women. This show may also have a higher than average viewership of 35-55 year old women, so your ad will contribute to the older demographics as well.
For “senior” products, you could advertise on “The Golden Girls” because the show has a high-income demographic watching and the majority of the audience is women. This show may also have a lower than average 18-35 year old viewership, so your ad will contribute to the older demographics as well.
Choose the right media mix.
TV ads are a great way to boost other marketing efforts, but don’t go overboard and try too many different types of ads at once or you will negatively impact your budget for each one. Instead, stagger them out over weeks or months so that they complement each other without cannibalizing viewership.
Create Content Specifically for TV Ads
Too many marketers use the same approach for all their ad channels. This just doesn’t work with TV ads, the platform is unique and what works for print or online ads will not necessarily resonate with TV viewers. You can create content specifically for TV ads that is short and leaves the audience wanting more so you can release it online later. This helps potentially viral videos become even more successful since they’ll already have momentum coming from prime time TV airings, so use this technique to expand your reach even further!
Create A Cohesive Ad Strategy Across All Channels
While it’s important to specifically tailor your TV ad copy for TV advertising, you want to make sure your messaging is cohesive and consistent across all your advertising channels. The best way to achieve this is to work with a content marketing agency that can create or advise you on the creation of your ad copy. Relying on the experts for this takes one more thing off your plate so you can focus on the bigger picture.
Track Your TV Ads Success
TV ads aren’t like online and print ads, they evolve and take on a life of their own as people talk about them and share them. There’s no magical solution that will track the success of your TV ad for you, so it’s up to you to gauge how successful your campaign is. Write down which channels you used, the time of day, the target demographic (age, gender), how long the ad was, and its cost. Compare that to what was promised in the TV ad, then you can see what worked and improve on areas that need work.
Save money with Remnant Ads.
Remnant ads are often the most cost-effective way to get your commercial on TV, even for prime time slots and during the most popular programs. Remnant ads are the unsold pieces of TV time, like when a show is sold out but there are still some available commercial spots. Instead of purchasing all the available prime time or daytime commercial spots with one product, why not stretch your budget by buying remnant advertising space from production companies? There are agencies, like the Remnant Agency, that specializes in Remnant placements and they can help you get a fantastic return on your advertising dollars. People often have the misconception that remnant ads are less effective or aren’t available in desirable time slots and both statements couldn’t be further from the truth.
Be consistent with placements.
One way to keep audiences interested in your ads is to keep them fresh by varying the content, but you also need to be careful not to alienate your viewers. A way around this is through consistency of placement – have the same commercial air during new episodes of their favorite shows like “Grey’s Anatomy” on Thursday nights every week. This will let audiences know when they can tune in to see your ads again and repeat viewership will create brand recognition.
Use call-to-action spots sparingly so you don’t push away loyal viewers.
Another approach is by putting the “call-to-action” spot at the end of your commercial so people are more likely to remember it. This works because TV viewing is generally a passive activity so the viewer won’t be as concerned with missing out on information as they would during an online video where distraction is easy as you can easily click away from a commercial to go do something else.
Use comedic timing.
When you include humor in your ads, this increases brand recognition and makes people more likely to remember your product. Since the average attention span is only 10 seconds, it’s important to be concise and punchy instead of trying to cram as much information as possible into your commercial. Don’t forget that TV ads are still a form of entertainment so people will watch them for entertainment value as well as information about your product or service.
Set up an SMS campaign. Sending SMS messages is a key part of TV advertising and can help you get your message across even more effectively than just audio or video, especially if the viewer has missed parts of it or doesn’t have sound enabled. The great thing about this technique is that it allows you to continue your brand awareness efforts directly with interested customers so they’ll be more likely to invest in your product or service.
Create a TV ad that tells a story.
There are plenty of ways to use storytelling techniques in your ads so they’ll be memorable and get people talking about them. This makes it easier for consumers to remember the name of the brand you’re pushing, which is key when putting out large-scale campaigns.
There are always new ways to advertise on TV that will allow you to maximize your profits. Focus on using these tips and tricks in conjunction with each other (and of course, by putting out great products) and you’re sure to see an increase in sales if not brand recognition!
Make the most of TV advertising by leveraging newer strategies like Remnant campaigns, humor, story-telling, and SMS messaging. Remember that while TV isn’t the be-all-end-all of marketing it’s still an incredibly powerful tool that can help you get your product or service in front of a huge audience.
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