SMART Advertising team

Is your advertising strategy SMART?

Digital and traditional advertising competition increases significantly during the holiday season, (i.e. Thanksgiving through New Years). Business-to-Consumer companies (B2C) are trying to reach as many customers as possible, which means there is an increase in competition and costs. Because of this extra competition, it is very important that our clients stand above the crowd with exceptional and SMART advertising: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely. If you structure your advertising campaigns by those five guidelines, you will position yourself for success. When creating an advertising campaign, try to answer the following questions for each category:

Specific: Is your advertising campaign specific or broad?

The more specific, the better. You should be looking for quantitative information in every aspect of your strategy:

What exactly are we trying to achieve?

Pick a conversion goal and a specific quantity that will help you determine if you advertising campaign is successful. Think in numbers, not in generalities (i.e. we want 10 more clients before the end of the year). If you have difficulty picking a quantity, use historical data as reference.

What will you do to achieve your marketing goal?

Laying out a plan before launching your advertising campaign will help you stay on track and will give you the best chance of hitting your goal. An effective way of doing this is to approach your marketing campaign as an experiment and establishing a hypothesis to test (i.e. advertising on LinkedIn will increase our traffic to our website by 20%).

Who are you targeting and are their multiple audiences?

Create narrow audiences that do not overlap. Although broad audience targeting is an effective way to increase brand awareness, it is harder to track how effective your targeting is and may not produce cost-effective conversions. By splitting your targeting into smaller silos, you can learn more about your audience and make accurate optimizations. For example, instead of targeting all women in the San Francisco area, split that audience into groups by age, interests, or behaviors such as quantity of children.

Who on your team will carry out the strategy? Who will be driving or holding others accountable? How often will they report back?

You get the idea…specifics will make all the difference in the success of your campaign.

Measurable: How will you know whether or not you have reached your goal?

Hailing back to specifics, how will you know whether or not you have reached your goal? Do your due diligence and make sure that all of your tracking software is configured to record your conversion goal and that all tracking pixels are set up correctly.

Attainable: Did you set realistic and attainable goals?

There is nothing wrong with setting aggressive goals as long as there is a chance you can make them a reality. As mentioned before, leverage historical data to help pick an attainable goal. Do you not have any historical data to leverage? Use advertising benchmarks for your industry to understand what you can expect to spend for certain conversions.

Relevant: Is your message relevant to your audience?

Use relevant creative assets to drive conversions at the best cost possible. To do this, you’ll want to test a variety of creative assets that are relevant to your audience. For example, if you are a male-centric goal apparel company looking to acquire customers, you should test if feature-focused messaging receives a better response than lifestyle-focused messaging.

Timely: Will your message be applicable to your audience today?

Timing is everything in advertising. It is the reason why you start to see Christmas advertising after Halloween and Valentine’s Day cards after New Years. You need to anticipate when your prospective customers will buy and use your products or services. This is also applicable for business services and the growth stage your target market is in. For example, if you provide startups and small businesses with website design services, you will want to target companies that were just founded.

When is the best time for them to receive your message?

Timing can also affect when your message should be sent out. If you are a B2B company, you might want to deliver ads on weekdays during business hours. However, if you are a B2C company selling baby products, you might have more success publishing your message in the evening and on weekends (see: historical data).

If you can answer these questions, then your campaign is SMART and you are ready to advertise!

Do you need help creating your SMART Advertising strategy or just a specific component like relevant messaging or picking a specific advertising goal? Let us help!