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A Note to Insiders: Design Changes Are Coming

The website you are currently viewing is going to undergo a few design changes.

I’ve done this before and will do it again I’m sure.

I just wanted to alert you that over the next couple of weeks, I’ll be trying out a few different custom themes and tweaking them.  My goal is to have the big changes done no later than the week after Labor Day.

Most likely before.as

I mention this because I “broke my website” the other day and while it only took 15 minutes for my host to fix, that may not always be the case.

This is another reason why I don’t do the heavy lifting of creating websites, I have others who do that through the company I work for, the digital division we call Federated Digital Solutions.

But this website is solely mine and mine alone.

Drop me a line if you see something weird at Scott@ScLoHo.net

Otherwise….

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

Not All Experts Are Experts

I’ve talked a lot recently about the term Experts.

Expert is not a title you earn by going to school or completing certain training.  Being an expert involves many aspects but generally speaking…

An Expert is someone who has expertise in something beyond the average person. expert1

Often a degree is required, like a Doctor.  Or other credentials for other professions.

But Not All Experts Are Experts.

In the media and marketing world, you can become certified and credentialed, but the question remains can you deliver?  Do you have success stories? Do you have data to back it up?  Do you have positive reviews?  Are you following best practices?

Even if you are a nice person, you may not have earned that expert title, yet.  If you want to be better and grow your expertise, you can do it.

I was researching some information for an advertising partner and was bothered by the level of expertise that an “expert” had.  It was lacking… not up to par with what my advertising partner should be getting for the money spent each month.

I dug further and discovered numerous mistakes online.  These were not invisible to the average person mistakes, but obvious ones to the naked eye.

It made me sad, actually because I really was hopeful that this “expert” was the real deal, but now I can’t recommend them anymore.

It’s not fair for me to publicly tell you who I am referring to. Instead I urge you to do your research.  If you don’t know how to research, or what criteria matters, then ask.  There are plenty of people who have the knowledge to guide you to find the right expert you need for your business.  Lawyer, accountant, social media, advertising, plumbers, you name it, you can find it.

And I’d be glad to help you double check on anyone in the marketing, media, online, advertising world both locally and nationally too.

Just ask me.

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

Marketing Wisdom from Others

I’m going to tell you a little story.

A story about Collective Wisdom.

ScLoHo's Collective Wisdom

 

Collective Wisdom is the name of the first blog I created in 2004, but Collective Wisdom has a deeper meaning:

The best way to learn something is by learning from others.

If you’re smart, you already knew that.

Thirty years ago, I moved my family from Indiana to Detroit to embark on a new career in a city I had never been to before.

It was my transition from working on the air as a radio personality and program director to the advertising side.  I was 26 years old and had to wear a sports coat and tie everyday.

I learned from the owner of our company, Don Crawford of the Crawford Broadcasting Company; and Frank Franciosi, the General Manager of WMUZ 103.5 FM.  I also learned from Doug Burns, a co-worker who I teamed up with to create some very creative and successful radio advertising campaigns before Doug advanced in the company and transferred to Dallas.

But beyond these people and our in-house training resources, I also sought out wisdom from others.

I became a student of marketing, advertising and sales.  Every week I learned from the business owners and managers I worked with as we created advertising and marketing plans.  Most were successful but we learned from those that weren’t successful too.

I also took responsibility for furthering my education by reading certain books and articles and today I’ll share some of those with you.

Harvey Mackay caught my attention with his book Swim With The Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive and his 2nd book Beware the Naked Man Who Offers You His Shirt. These two books laid the foundation for me in how to conduct myself in the business world and you should visit his website, subscribe to his weekly column and read all of his books.  You’ll be a better person if you read some of Harvey’s wisdom.

Another book, Positioning, The Battle for Your Mind by Al Ries and Jack Trout began to open up my thinking about marketing and advertising beyond the idea of how to write a commercial.  Al and Jack have since gone their separate ways, but I urge you to pick up any or all of the books they have authored.  Jack’s website has links to his books and there’s more at Al’s website.

Fast forward a few years (about 15+) and I was introduced to the writings of Roy H. Willams.  Roy is the self proclaimed Wizard of Ads and is extremely knowledgeable about not just the advertising world but also the way to use what I call Human Relationship Principles in your marketing.  I have my own copies of his first 3 books which I need to read again.  Roy also offers them free as downloadable PDF Files. I also subscribe to his weekly newsletter which is also free.

Another author that you may have heard about is Seth Godin.  I’ve read most of his books and although I don’t always agree, I appreciate reading his material and comparing his thoughts with my own.  Seth also has a blog that he posts on daily that you can subscribe to.

In a world where it seems like everyone is trying to sell us on the new bright and shiny marketing tool, platform, or gimmick, I urge you to do what I have been doing for the past 3 decades and learn the basics that can apply to your life and business dealings.

Learn how to learn.

Learn how to think.

Learn how to discover your own thoughts, and formulas on how to do stuff.

Take the knowledge and wisdom from others and see how you might apply it to your life.

That’s what I call Collective Wisdom.

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

Time to Apply for Penny Pitch 2016

The time is now for local charities to apply to be a chosen organization that will receive funds from WOWO Radio’s annual Penny Pitch fundraiser that will take place this fall.

PennyPitchLogo

Click here to get the details on how to apply and do it A.S.A.P.

This will be my 4th year as a WOWO insider, seeing how it all works and it is amazing.

Penny Pitch began in 1948 as a way for listeners to give their spare change, pennies, to help those who needed help locally.  Over the years it evolved to supporting local charities who would then use the generous donations for a specific need.

2013, my first year with WOWO listeners give over $87,000 to benefit Turnstone.

In 2014, $130,000 was raised and given to support Boomerang Backpacks.

2015 was another record year with over $141,000 donated by listeners and that amount was doubled by a local company to more than $280,000 that was divided among 4 organizations.

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

A ScLoHo Marketing & Advertising Preview

I’ve been ruminating about this for awhile.3d small people holds a magnifier

Too often I see others in my profession skip over the “hard work” and just do the easy stuff.

The profession I’m referring to is advertising sales and the easy part is to peddle advertising packages to as many people that you can without doing the hard work.

The hard work is to actually help business people decide what they should do that benefits them the most with their advertising and overall marketing.

That’s what I prefer to do.

I quit a job (twice) that wanted me to be a package pusher because that’s the way they ran their business.

I couldn’t stomach it.  So I left.

The past several years however have been very different.  I get to really dig in and help businesses become successful.

Yes, I sell advertising.

No, it’s not a one-size-fits-all package.

In the near future I’ll lay out the different considerations you should make before you say yes to an advertising sales person.

But in the meantime I’ve got some work to do to help a few really good people make smart decisions about spending their money for marketing and advertising.

I can help you too if you want my insight.  My contact info is listed below.

 

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

The Good Side of Advertising

Here in the United States it’s back to school season, so I thought it would be a good time to provide a little education on why advertising is actually good for us.

First off, I agree with most of you that there are some pretty annoying and terrible advertisements out there.   I could point to the political ads as the lowest of the bunch but let’s just agree and move forward.

Advertising is simply an attempt for a business to invite you to spend money with them.

The business may use incentives in their ads, such as the sales we have seen for back to school shopping.  Or they may simply be branding ads that are to remind us of them so when we have a need, they are top of mind and we check them out first.NASCAR-stickers

Actually we live in an ad-supported world.  NASCAR would not survive if there was no sponsorship dollars because the cost of the sport would have to be paid by the fans and ticket prices would be so high, the sport would die.

How about the online world?  The ads we see on our favorite websites or posted next to the stories we read are supplementing the cost of those websites.  Same thing with your “free email account”.  It’s more than just data collection, it’s also a way to improve your online experience.

As data is collected about us from our online habits and the information we give voluntarily on sites like Facebook, the reward for you and I is we are served ads for items that we are interested in.  The ads my son sees when he is online are different from the ads I see.

Try this experiment with a friend.  

Both of you visit the same page on a website on your own computers at the same time.  Odds are there will be different ads customized for each of you based on the information that “Big Data” knows about each of you.

By the way, if you are reading this and have a business, I can show you how to target online your potential customers anywhere.  It’s a pretty cool trick, and actually more than a trick, it’s an extremely useful way to spend your money to invite customers.  It’s part of the Good Side of Advertising.

Contact me and let’s talk.

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

Should You Go For Shock & Awful In Your Ads?

First, the back story of this article is from an exchange last week with friends on Twitter that began when I retweeted a link about profanity being good for you.

I will not use the F word online.  It’s also one of the words that broadcasters are not supposed to utter over the public airwaves (broadcast radio and television).ScloHobookgs

The standards have loosened over the decades.  The Wall Street Journal announced that they are now going to print words that were forbidden previously.

But what about your advertising? No, you don’t need to adult language to capture the attention of potential customers.

You may capture their attention, but will it convert them to becoming a paying customer?  Usually not.

Forget about the idea that Sex Sells.  It may get out attention, but sell?  Nope not unless there is a real tie-in between the product/service and the sexuality in the ad.

There are oodles of ways to capture attention and perhaps shock potential customers but you don’t have to reduce yourself by lowering your standards.

Want help?  Ask me.

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

Advertise for Results Today and Influence Tomorrow

Word of Mouth Advertising with a Bigger Mouth.6e94e554b7b7e39ef803042aff61a90fe2196b0c9b95b4027f8dc795

That’s the way I’ve described effective radio ads for decades that are taking advantage of the power of the influence of a radio station and the station personalities as a trust conduit.

On my station, WOWO radio in Fort Wayne, Charly and Pat do live endorsement ads for some of our advertising partners and it is very effective.

Why?

Charly and Pat have earned the trust of their listeners and when they speak highly of the companies they endorse, it simple becomes Word of Mouth Advertising with a Bigger Mouth.

That trust factor applies to our live embedded news sponsorship messages too because WOWO radio has been around longer than most of our listeners, (over 90 years and 20 as a news talk station.)

The trust factor between WOWO and our listeners actually goes beyond our listeners because of this same Word of Mouth influence.

If my friend who does not listen to WOWO asks me for a recommendation for fixing ______ or buying _________ and I’ve heard about a business that advertises on WOWO, I’m going to pass along that business even if I never used them myself because of the Word of Mouth Trust Factor.

This goes beyond any measurable Return On Investment that a business can keep track of.  Your advertising with me on WOWO is an investment in results today and influence tomorrow.

Want to know more?  Let’s talk.

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

How to Convert $1 into $10 with your Marketing

I just finished reading an article on Medium about Influencer Marketing that claims, For Every $1 Spent on Influencer Marketing, A Brand Makes $6.50.

But they are wrong.

I’m not doubting the facts and figures they present, but I doubt that the return is what they say it is.

It’s too low.

But it’s impossible to accurately measure despite the rise in data collection and technology that links our lives and behaviors, there is still a missing link and that missing link is the human factor which makes it impossible to accurately tell us which piece of the marketing puzzle was the final one that inspired us to buy.

Truth be told, there are countless influences on each individual buying choice we make.

So instead of telling you which is the best form of advertising and marketing, I’m going to challenge you in a different direction with the purpose of  converting $1 into $10 with your marketing.

It boils down to what you do with a potential customer after they’ve heard/seen your ad. connecting-people

It’s about making the right connection with the follow through.

I’ll use an advertising partner of mine who will remain nameless today, but they are aware of what I’m going to share and I’m going to help them fix the problem.

This service oriented business was getting several phone calls from people that could have become customers but didn’t.

(I have access to some of their incoming phone calls and listened to a couple dozen of them recently.)

The service manager talked to a potential customer for 5 minutes without offering to schedule a service call to send a tech to diagnose the problem.  Instead he gave the person calling advice on what the problem could be and left it hanging…

Another call from a potential customer who was ready to book a service call but the scheduler led her down a different. complex path and again it was a lost sale.

That’s just two calls that I heard where the professionals in the business had potential customers call them and the result was not good.

It wasn’t good for the people who called because when they hung up the phone there was no plan to fix the problem they called about.

It wasn’t good for my advertising partner because they spent time on the phone and lost money (for the time) instead of earning money (by converting the call into a customer.)

This is not an isolated incident.

I dropped my insurance agent a few years ago, because he didn’t offer a solution to a problem.

Even the fast food minimum wagers are trained to ask if you want to make that burger a full meal.

Your job as a business is to offer a solution to people who are asking for help.

Most people will pay you for that solution.

You spend money to invite those folks to contact you.

Now you need to follow through and with those people who walk in your store, call your office or connect online.  Solve their problem, and they will pay you. They will also tell others about how well you took care of them.

You’ve already spent the money to get them to connect.  Earn that money back and you can start seeing a 10 to 1 return on your advertising and marketing.

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

It’s Simple and Complex

Many of the people I see selling advertising and marketing seem to get lost in a world of details that most business owners don’t really care about.

I witnessed this last month (again). I sat in a meeting where a salesperson was trying to sell a service my advertising partner would probably like to use, if they are not overwhelmed by it all.

Advertising really is simple, you want to invite people to your business to spend money with you.

You don’t need to know all the complexities of how an ad is created, or how to reach the most people, or “right” people…

You just need to partner with advertising and marketing people who know how to do that effectively.

That’s what I strive to do.

This rose is both simple & complex.
This rose is both simple & complex.

Take the complex and keep it simple.

Want help?

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

The ONE Thing Business Owners Want And Need

In my couple of decades of helping business owners with their advertising and marketing, when you boil it all down there is only one thing that business owners need and want.

What is that one thing?ddddd

Customers.

Yep, that’s it.  Customers, people who will reward them by spending money with them.

Why is this important?

Money.

Everyone needs money to pay for the basics in life.

And we need money to pay for the extras too.

Advertising and marketing needs to always be thought of in terms of the bottom line, but money is not the bottom line.

That sounds like a contradiction but hold on a moment.

I spend money every week at a local coffee shop that I’ve been visiting since my wife first introduced me to this place 16 years ago.  I might look like another $3 cup of coffee to some folks, but that’s only when you look at me as a simple money transaction. Some days I am a $10 food and drink guy.

But when you look at me as a customer, my value changes.  Using the same price points I just mentioned, I spend at this one coffee shop $50 bucks a month or more. That’s $600 a year. Make that $6000 over ten years.  My guess is I’ve given this one coffee shop $10,000 or more so far.

Plus the countless meetings I’ve had where I introduced others to this coffee shop and they spend money too.

It’s not just the money, because we can’t really count the exact dollars.  Those numbers are guesstimates based on what I saw when I checked my bank statement a few moments ago.

It’s the extra value I bring as a loyal customer that has brought others to become customers too and they pay for food and drinks too.

Customers are where it’s at.  No customers and you have no business.

The advertising and marketing efforts need to be appropriate for what you are needing to attract and retain customers and to help those customers tell others about you in a positive manner.

Instead of trying to figure out if you need to be on Instagram, Pinterest, HGTV, the local 11 o’clock newscast or advertising with Rush Limbaugh, take a step back and understand that you simply need customers.

It’s my job to help you weave your way through the multitude of marketing and advertising options.  Want help?  Let’s talk.

 

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

Understanding WOWO Radio’s Baby Boomer Listeners

Another great article from Mediapost about the value of the Baby Boomer generation.  The biggest demographic of listeners to my radio station, News/Talk 1190 WOWO in Fort Wayne, Indiana are the Baby Boomers.WOWOLogo 2016

Here’s some more information to help you understand WOWO Radio’s Baby Boomer Listeners:

…The fact is, adults aged 55 to 64 outspend the average consumer in nearly every category, every year, per the U.S. Consumer Expenditure Survey, despite the fact that marketers obsess over the younger, Millennial segment. According to a 2015 survey by the AARP’s Influent50 in conjunction with ORC International, 40% of boomers agreed that companies aren’t adequately addressing what’s important to people their age…

Here’s additional highlights that apply to WOWO Radio listeners:

Boomers Value Comfortable Living

Today’s aging population aren’t leaving their lifelong homes for retirement communities; they’re leaving them for nicer homes. Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate found that 57% of homeowners aged 49 to 67 planned to move out of their current home. Seventy percent of that group want their new home to be the best in which they have ever lived. They’re looking for new construction, amenities and communities in which they can pursue active lifestyles.

Boomers Prioritize Retaining their Youth

(Boomers) came of age with consumerism, and perhaps more than other age groups, have come to measure self-worth according to external factors. Much of the demographic’s … spending is on products that will help them maintain their youth and energy.

Cosmetics, exercise equipment, vitamins and diet soda are all products in high demand by boomers. Still, when you think of how those products are marketed, the boomer target doesn’t immediately come to mind. For products that do consider boomers in their marketing plans, many do so based on inaccurate stereotypes — a mistake that can backfire, driving customers away from your product to one that doesn’t seem to condescend.

While Nielsen has referred to boomers as “The Most Valuable Generation for Marketers,” holding 70% of the disposable income in the U.S., only 10% of marketing dollars are devoted to reaching the segment.

What we have found at WOWO Radio that if we invite our Baby Boomer listeners to do business with local businesses that have what Boomers want, everyone wins.  As a member of this generation, I know that my wife and I are spending money on 8 (soon to be 9) grandkids, doing home improvements on the house we bought 2 years ago, buying cars, electronics, dining out, vacationing regularly, taking up new hobbies and enjoying life.

Want to invite some Baby Boomers to spend their money with your business?  Talk to me.

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

I Know My Bias, Do You Know Yours?

All of us are biased in our thoughts, opinions and actions.  The word bias is not a polite way of saying prejudiced.  I’m using it to share with you my professional biases relating to advertising.

As an advertising and marketing professional I have preferences of certain media and marketing platforms.  Anyone and everyone who sells stuff is biased but some won’t admit it.

from http://www.theinclusionsolution.me/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/Unconscious-Bias-Part-5.png
from http://bit.ly/29MOua4

I used to offer an unbiased opinion, but that’s word-play.  Any opinion is based on someones bias, right?

Instead I offer an objective opinion based on my bias.

What is my bias?

It leans toward the marketing solutions I sell, advertising on and with WOWO Radio and some of the Digital Solutions I offer too.

This is important:

I had these biases before I worked for this company, because I had personal experience with them.   I also decided to work for this company because of my biases.

I’ve been in radio since I was 16 and I saw the power of radio personalities when I was one myself for 10 years.

When I was 26 a couple of things happened:

  1. I was bored with music radio and started listening to news and talk shows when I was working in Detroit.  I’ve been a news/talk radio listener ever since.
  2. I also started learning the dynamics of human relationship oriented advertising and how easy it was for businesses to be successful on the radio if these principles are followed.

Fast forward 20 years and I was discovering the dynamics of the web as a two-way communication tool with social media.  I was advising my radio clients the benefits of content marketing and sharing my own personal success stories.

Now I have success stories to both traditional media with news/talk 1190 WOWO radio and using some of the Federated Media Digital Solutions my company offers.  It’s due to both my personal habits and professional successes working with advertising partners that I am biased.  I believe in what I offer because I know it works.

Here’s how I also offer an objective opinion.  I study and learn about the other options you have to advertise and market your services and products.  I spent several years on the Board of Directors for the American Advertising Federation and more recently I have cultivated relationships with others that sell other advertising media to be able to make recommendations beyond what I can offer.

Here’s a homework assignment for you the next time someone wants to sell you something…

Ask them why they are biased towards the product/service they want you to buy.  Do they have a good reason for that bias or is it just a paycheck?

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

Is Customer Service Optional?

As consumers, we put up with a lot of crappy service at times.

Like when we don’t have a choice, there’s only one place to buy ________ so we endure the unresponsive, ill mannered, or simply non-existent customer service that some places dish out. ScloHobookgs

But even if you’re the only game in town, (or your neighborhood), customers can speak out and they will.

Take a former co-worker of mine who lives in Michigan.  She complained on Facebook Saturday about the problems with her local grocery store.  In Michigan they have a 10 cent can and bottle deposit for soft drink containers to encourage recycling.  Read what she wrote:

An Open Letter to ‪#‎Kroger‬

I’ve just returned from your store in Farmington Hills, MI, and I have a few problems to report:

* As usual, there was a long line of customers waiting to deposit their empty bottle and cans in the bottle return. And as usual, one or more of the machines is broken, causing still more delays for hurried customers. People are fuming.
Look, it’s the LAW in our state that the public must return bottles in order to receive their 10-cent deposit. That means it’s the responsibility of sellers to provide some means by which customers can return empties. You are not living up to your half of the bargain. I’d like to continue to shop at your store, but I don’t have time to play around with malfunctioning equipment, or closures while you wash the floor, or whatever.

* I stood for seven minutes at the deli counter waiting to purchase a salad. No one helped me; no one said “Hello, I’ll be right with you.” When the customers ahead of me were finished, the store employee turned away and went to the back. I walked away without my salad.

HOW LONG do you think I will continue to visit your store under these circumstances?

Now I know there are other stores she can go to and the real question is will THIS store respond? Will they also fix the problems?

As I read the comments, there were plenty of suggestions of other stores nearby that would like to earn her business.

Unfortunately this is not an isolated incident.  Take some time this week to do a customer service check with your business and see how well your staff is serving customers, because customer service is NOT optional.

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

A Conversation about Expertise

A friend mentioned to me the old saying that “1/2 my advertising is wasted, I just don’t know which half.”Two-way-conversation

On one hand I agreed, but the reality is that there are varying degrees of good and bad spending, nearly nothing is clear cut black and white when it comes to the benefits and return on investment.

You need to prioritize your advertising to invest in what will get you the best return on investment.

Easier said then done said my friend.

Not so fast, I responded.  There are ways to make smart choices and it all depends on you.

But you may need some help, and that’s why I’m here.

The friend I was having this conversation with last week is an expert in his field.  He has the book knowledge, the hands-on experience and I would trust him for his services.

I would not trust him to make good,  solid advertising decisions.  That’s not his area of expertise.

Likewise, I shouldn’t be trusted to do his work, I have an observational knowledge and have done research on what he does, but I’m no expert in what he does.

Instead, my expertise is in the advertising and marketing world.  I can and will help him generate new customers and clients who are looking for someone with his expertise.

The reason why that old saying about 1/2 your advertising being wasted is due to the inability of those trying to figure it out not having the expertise to know the differences.

You wouldn’t want your auto mechanic to remove your appendix just because he is handy with tools right?

Want some expert guidance on advertising and marketing?  That’s why I’m here.  Let’s talk.

 

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

Don’t Call Us Seniors

A marketing tip for those born in the 1970’s, 80’s or 90’s from Mediapost:

Call Me ‘Boomer’

2012-10-14 09.33.51
She’s a Baby Boomer. She’s also my wife 🙂

Language in the mature market space can be a minefield, with words like “senior” and “aging” getting a strong negative response.

Some marketers have found ways to dodge the language pitfalls with finesse:

One restaurant I recently came across offers the “Sunset Dinner,” a delicious four-course repast for a very reasonable price. Offered between the hours of 4 and 6 p.m. weekdays, at tables overlooking stunning views of a roaring river, it seemed obvious that this special deal targeted retirees. Many restaurants would have called it an “early bird special,” a well-worn term certain to make a customer feel ancient. However, “Sunset Dinner” sounds appealing and romantic.

As other marketers struggle to avoid alienating stereotypes about Boomers as this demographic heads into retirement, there’s good news: According to a 2015 Pew Research study, you can actually just use the word “Boomer.” This generation actually likes its nickname.

The study found that Boomers are more likely to embrace their generational label than any other age group. A large percentage of Boomers actually feel that their label fits them.

Seventy-nine percent of Boomers identified with their label, versus 18% of the silent generation, 58% of Generation X, and 40% of Millennials.

Boomers also had the highest percentage of those who think their label is a good fit.

Thirty-one percent said it applies to them “very well,” and 39% said “fairly well,” for a total of 70% positive reactions.

The other generations lagged behind in terms of thinking their labels apply:

Silents: 14%; Gen X: 38%; Millennials: 30%.

Some other interesting facts in the study:

  • Boomers and the Silent Generation were generally more likely to see themselves in a positive light than Gen X and Millennials.
  • Boomers were the most likely to see themselves as environmentally conscious.
  • Boomers tied with Gen X as most likely to see themselves as entrepreneurs.

It’s interesting that Boomers’ positive view of themselves also extends to their nickname. Although many words are red flags for mature market consumers, the next generation of retirees doesn’t seem to mind the B-word.

Considering that roughly 10,000 of this generation will turn 65 every day for the next 19 years, it’s nice to know that the term “Boomer” may resonate more positively with them than labels like “senior citizen” or “retiree.”

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

What Are You Doing Differently?

I’m just going to toss out a few items and you can fact check them if you want because I’m not going to hyperlink the sources, there’s too many and I’m sort of busy these days.

I want you to answer a question… that question is what are you doing differently?

If you are using the same media mix to advertise that you were using in 2013, you need to re-evaluate. Some of the media platforms you’ve been using have lost viewers/readers/listeners.  Other media platforms that were just getting started back then have become worthy of consideration.

Think about that pocket computer known as your phone.  Every 18 months the technology capabilities of our computers doubles. The phone you got for Christmas, 2014 is old, broken, out of date, or you’ve already replaced it.DeathtoStock_SlowDown2

As I was writing this piece last week, I was using 3 screens.  My laptop, my phone and I was watching America’s Got Talent on the flat screen in our family room.

A few days ago I was watching a TV show on Amazon Prime, streamed from my laptop to another TV via my Chromecast.

Every day I hop in my car and listen to at least 4 different radio stations.  Besides listening as I drive, I sometimes hear a radio station when I stop to pick up my breakfast and I also sometime listen to the streaming of my favorite stations by plugging earbuds into my laptop as I have my afternoon coffee.

I don’t remember the last time I bought the local newspaper, or any newspaper for that matter.  I have read stories from the papers, but it’s because I get a link on Twitter or Facebook that captures my attention and I click and read.

Those are some of the media habits I live every week in the summer of 2016.  Some I’ve been doing for years, others for just months.

What about you?  What is different about your media habits compared to a few years ago?

Your customers have changed some of their media habits over the years too.  My question for you is have you changed your media mix to take advantage of the changes that are going on all around us?

What are you doing differently?  If you want help figuring this out so your business can make money, contact me so we can talk.

 

 

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

10 Common Mistakes in Marketing from Roy

Last month I got an email from Roy Williams that I’m going to share in it’s entirety.

Agree or Disagree?  Contact me and let’s talk.  ScLoHo's Collective Wisdom

10 Most Common Mistakes in Marketing

 

1 Inappropriate Use of Social Media

The whole world is on FaceBook, but is that the right place for your product or service to be advertised? To get a clear idea of the kinds of offers that are working well on FaceBook, go to the Success Stories page at FaceBook.com. Judging from this list of success stories, it would appear that FaceBook works extremely well for getting people together socially, not so well for hard goods and services.

(HINT: I think there may be a reason they call it “social” media.)

2 Overconfidence in the Value of Targeting

Jeffrey Eisenberg insightfully points out that, “online customers are exactly the same people as offline customers, yet advertisers tend to think of them as an entirely different species.” For the same amount of money it costs you to reach 5 tightly targeted customers online, you can reach 5 customers who have that same profile PLUS 127 of their friends by using broadcast TV or radio. Do you want your brand to be the one people think of immediately and feel the best about when they finally need what you sell?

3 The Assumption that Every Message is Relevant

Why does every advertiser believe their product or service category to be intrinsically interesting? More than information, entertainment is the currency with which you can happily buy your prospective customer’s time and attention. But most ads have zero entertainment value.

4 Fear of Criticism

Most ads aren’t written to persuade. They’re written not to offend. But any message that has the power to move people will always move some of them in the wrong direction. When you’ve written a good ad, you must brace the advertiser for the negative backlash they will receive from people who are anxious to be offended. The only alternative to this is to forever settle for ads that are mushy, mundane and mediocre. Please don’t.

5 Measuring Ad Effectiveness Too Quickly

Its claim to “instantly and accurately measure every ad’s effectiveness” is part of what makes digital marketing so appealing to advertisers. But didn’t you say you want your brand to be the one people think of immediately and feel the best about when they finally need what you sell? This requires ongoing advertising and longer measurement cycles. You cannot hold every ad immediately accountable and expect to build relationship with your customer.

6 Unsubstantiated Claims

Adjectives are the marks of an ad filled with empty rhetoric. Verbs are the marks of an ad that demonstrates its claims. Verbs – action words – “show” your customer what your product can do. Fluffy adjectives simply “tell” them. In the words of Christopher J. Maddock, “Show, don’t tell.”

7 Believing that “Old” Media No Longer Works

It is true that you need a website and that most customers are going to visit your website before making first contact with you. Therefore, it’s vital that your website be a good one. But if you believe that online marketing is the most efficient way to drive traffic to your website, you need to go back and read Most Common Mistake #2. Do you want to see a massive jump in the effectiveness of your online ads? Begin advertising on radio or television. But Take Note: your elevated metrics will make it appear as though your online efforts are working magically well when, in fact, the credit should be attributed to mass media.

8 Assuming “The Decision Maker” Is The Only Person You Need to Reach

Decisions aren’t made in a vacuum. You must also win the influencers if you want to create a successful brand. If you don’t value the opinions of influencers you’ll evolve into a direct-response marketer. But does your business category lend itself to direct response?

9 Believing that “Millennials” Aren’t Like the Rest of Us

Millennials aren’t a tribe, they are a collection of tribes. They do not behave as a single, cohesive birth cohort. Google “Millennials” and the dictionary definition that will pop up will show the word “millennial” most commonly used in this sentence: “The industry brims with theories on what makes millennials tick.” But when you look at a list of what millennials supposedly want, it’s exactly what the rest of us want. Yes, they’re not like we “50-somethings” used to be, but then we’re not like we used to be, either.

10 AdSpeak

People don’t hate advertising; they hate boring advertising; they hate predictable advertising. They hate the time-wasting, life-sucking sound of too many words wrapped around too small an idea. They hate AdSpeak. But they love entertainment. Learn to purchase your customer’s time and attention and goodwill with delightful, interesting, entertaining ads.

Come to Wizard Academy and we’ll teach you how.

Roy H. Williams

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

Digital Success Stories By The Numbers

At WOWO Radio, I sell advertising. Wait, I really help businesses solve their Key Marketing Challenges.WOWOLogo 2016

Sometimes that includes ads on WOWO, sometimes that includes using our Federated Digital Solutions and sometime it’s both.FDS300

I’m about to show you data from Google Analytics from 3 of my advertising partners.

2016-06-27 (3)

This business started with embedded live news sponsorship ads, 10 seconds long on WOWO in 2015.  In March 2016 we added Custom Audience Targeting and a SEM/PPC campaign from Federated Digital Solutions.

The first source is people directly typing in the business URL, which we have been saying on WOWO 15 times a week for nearly 60 weeks. Number two on the list are the C.A.T. Display ads from Federated Digital Solutions. #4 and #5 are the SEM/PPC digital ads we are doing. (7, 9 & 10 are spam.)

Let’s look at another local business.

2016-06-27 (1)

This business started on WOWO Radio with Live Endorsement ads in 2015 that include both their phone number and web address.  They are an established name with over 60 years in business. In February 2016 we added Custom Audience Targeting and on June 4th took over their SEM/PPC campaign.

Again the results from our Federated Digital Solution campaigns are amazing. #1 on the list is the C.A.T Digital Display ads. #5 is the results from 3 weeks of our managing their SEM/PPC compared to #6 which are the results from 5 months of SEM managed by their old vendor.

One more to share today…

2016-06-27 (2)

 

 

This is a local manufacturing company that sells wholesale.  Their very specialized market is worldwide.  We are only using a Custom Audience Targeting Digital Display Ad campaign that covers the entire U.S.A.  No WOWO radio ads.

This is the results after 6 weeks.  Once again Custom Audience Targeting Display Ads, (#1 on the list) is driving traffic to their website which was our goal.  We’ve looked at the details of who the people are that are seeing and clicking on their display ads and we are on track to help them make a lot of money.

Questions? Ask me.

 

 

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.

Do You Know What C.A.T. Is?

Around the radio station we talk about offering a “CAT” advertising solution as one of the methods to help our advertising partners.

But most of you are clueless if I were to ask you, “Do You Know What C.A.T. Is?”

That’s alright because I’m going to take a couple days to explain.

First off C.A.T. is a made-up word. ScLoHo’s Web World

But that’s okay, because it’s an acronym for something pretty spectacular that is offered exclusively by Federated Media, the parent company of my radio station WOWO in Fort Wayne, Indiana.  We have a digital division called Federated Digital Solutions, and C.A.T. is one of the solutions.

C.A.T. stands for Custom Audience Targeting.  Here’s why those three words were selected.

Imagine if you could targeting your advertising so only specially qualified individuals saw or heard your ad?

If this was possible while watching T.V. that means the ads that you see while watching your favorite show would be different than the ads I see, while watching the same show at the exact same time!

Say you are into Country Music, and I’m more of a Classic Rock fan, you’d see ads for the upcoming country concert coming to town and I’d see some old rockers concert commercial.

So far, that’s not possible.  It’s not possible with television, radio, print ads, billboards either.

But it is possible with the power of digital display ads.  These are the ads that seem to follow you around after you’ve been to a website and ads for that website appear when you’re off looking up something else online.

What I just described is called Retargeting and it works by the website you visited placing a pixel or cookie on your web browser.  Retargeting is the oldest form of this digital display ad technology.

When I combine it with three other methods of finding the right target for your ads, it can be pretty powerful.

Those three other methods include Search Retargeting, Contextual Retargeting and GeoFencing.  Together, these 4 methods of finding the right audience for your digital display ads combined with other qualifying data helps us to create a Custom Audience Target.

Curious about how this works?  Contact me and I’ll show you.

 

Scott Howard aka ScLoHo has 25+ years of experience in marketing , advertising, media and works directly in the radio and digital world from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Contact him at Scott@ScLoHo.net or 260.255.4357.