Do you make the mistake of putting your brand and logo at the top of your print ads?

metal-man-recyclersIf so, you are not alone.

But even so, STOP IT!

Here is an example in this weeks edition of the Bay News for Metal Man Recyclers, Koromiko Street, Tauranga.

This approach is classic, and very common…  But still wrong!

The problem is there are 3 audiences:

  1. The business/advertiser (who is paying for the ads)
  2. The graphic designer who designed the ad
  3. The potential customer (people who read the Bay News in this case)

Each audience has a different agenda, and unfortunately the potential customer doesn’t get a say so the advertiser and the graphic designer work together to create the ad.

That’s a shame because the potential customers opinion is the only one that counts!

The graphic designer knows that if they create an ad with the advertisers brand name and logo at the top, the advertiser is going to be happy and will pay the bill.  The graphic designer doesn’t care if the ad works or not, that’s not their business, it’s not their problem, they just do what they are told.

If your advertisement doesn’t work, what’s the point? It’s a waste of money if this ad doesn’t get customers in the door isn’t it?

The key to a great ad is a great headline, because it achieves 3 things:

  1. It filters out non-customers (if the headline doesn’t appeal to them, they move on. Fine, let them go!)
  2. It tells potential customers what’s in it for them (that’s all they care about. They don’t care about your brand, they care about what they can get from you)
  3. It hints at what action the customer can take

With those ideas in mind, I propose the following headlines for this ad:

  1. Old Car dumped on your lawn? We’ll take it away for FREE
  2. Got old car batteries, lead pipes, copper wire, aluminum cans etc? We pay cash for scrap metal.  So check under your deck and in your shed today

So my message to Metal Man Recyclers, Koromiko Street, Tauranga is:

Change your headline to one of these, and put your brand name at the very bottom and only put your logo there if there is room.

How many reward cards do you have in your wallet?

rewards-cardsI’ve got a truckload. I’m pretty good a throwing receipts away, but I’m a sucker for a bargain so keep many rewards cards.

The most common type is “buy 9 cups of coffee, get your 10th cup free”.

From VTNZ Hewlets Road I’ve got “get 2 WOF’s, get $5 off the third, get 2 more WOF’s, get $10 off the fifth.

From BP Maunganui Road (beside the fly-over) I’ve got “fill your gas bottle 9 times, get the 10th free”

From Bakers Delight on Owens Place I’ve got “spend over $4 5 times, get a loaf of bread free”

From Subway I’ve got a Subcard for 20c credit for every 6 inch sub I purchase.

And the more famous nationwide examples would be Fly Buys and Air Points.

Here’s the trick: Some of these actually save me money (I would probably go to bakers delight anyway), but others are a real waste of time (it will take me 5 years to need 9 bottles of LPG), but I can’t resist the promise of saving money at some point in the future.

And in the meantime, I’m carrying around their brand name in my wallet. Their brand name is front of mind, because everytime I open my wallet I am reminded of it.

Is it the same for you? What cards have you got in your wallet?

How can you make this hugely successful tactic work for your business? Can you issue a rewards cards?

What ever you do, don’t be tempted to write an expiry date on them. The couple of times that happened to me it made me really mad and you don’t want loyal customers thinking dark thoughts about you!

Is Georgie Pie coming back? Why did Georgie Pie fail last time? Who owns

georgie-pie-logoSo you’ve probably heard about how the “Bring Georgie Pie back” campaign on Facebook has over 21,000 members (and climbing fast). And that McDonalds owns the brand and they haven’t decided if it will consider bringing it back yet.

I have 2 questions:

  1. Why did Georgie Pie fail last time?
  2. Who owns

Q1: Why did Georgie Pie fail last time?

For some background first, see Georgie Pie on Wikipedia.

It seems that 3 factors contributed to Georgie Pie’s failure last time:

  1. They expanded too fast, and when demand didn’t climb at the same level they ran out of money
  2. A price rise from the iconic $1 (and even 75c menu), killed the value for money that drove thousands to the restaurants
  3. There is some talk about people becoming more health conscious in the mid-late 90’s (I think this is bullocks. Most people don’t give a damn. If a pie looks tasty, they’ll buy it).

georgie-pie-restaurantSo the question is: Could Georgie Pie suffer the same fate this time around? Not likely.  And with such a ground swell of support and huge public awareness, I think it could work.

I think a key to success would be to roll out the chain very slowly, so it keeps the demand and excitement high.  Imagine being able to tell your friends “I was craving a Georgie Pie Steak and Cheese and drove from Hamilton to Auckland to get it. The queue was so long, it went out the door and up the street, I had to wait 2 hours. It was awesome!”

Q2: Who owns

Some guy called Eddie Powell who lives in Tuakau, South Auckland. He also owns and

He purchased in November 2008. Smart guy.

But it could go in 1 of 2 ways:

  1. Either McDonalds/Georgie Pie will keep the offer to buy the domain on the down low and offer him a few grand to get it back (maybe $10k, maybe $20k, who knows?)
  2. Or they sue is ass for TradeMark infringement, and the court orders him to give it to them for a couple of hundred bucks (and they might pay his court costs to be nice)

Example of how new packaging can give boring products new life

Cheeky Monkeys First Aid KitCheck out these fun and funky first aid kits

Are you selling a product or service that’s a little bit boring? How can you funk it up with new packaging?

The Secrets of Consulting by Gerald M. Weinberg

My Notes on “The Secrets of Consulting” by Gerald M. Weinberg:The secrets

  • The first law of consulting: In spite of what your client may tell you, theirs is always a problem.
  • The second law of consulting: No matter how it looks at first, it’s always a people problem
  • Never promise more than 10% improvement (so the client doesn’t get embarrassed about how crap they were)
  • If you happen to achieve more than 10% improvement, make sure it isn’t noticed
  • Whatever the client is doing, advise something else (because what they have been doing hasn’t worked so far)

  • You’ll never accomplish anything if you care who gets the credit
  • If they don’t hire you, don’t solve their problem
  • The Law of Raspberry Jam: The wider you spread it, the thinner it gets. Alternative: “Influence or affluence; take your choice”. One on one advice is very powerful for initiating change, an email newsletter or a book is weaker at influencing chance. But with the latter, with leverage, you can make a lot of money
  • Most of the time, for most of the world, no matter how hard people work at it, nothing of any significance happens
  • Once you eliminate your number one problem, number two gets a promotion
  • The Hard Law: If you can’t accept failure, you’ll never succeed as a consultant
  • Inverse of the Hard Law: Some people do succeed as consultants, so it must be possible to deal with failure
  • The Harder Law: Helping myself is even harder than helping others

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