Advertising that makes an impression. It is as easy as K.I.S.S.

Posted by Skip Quast on April 22, 2013 at 11:59 AM

K.I.S.S. (the advertising and principle, not the KISS ITband) is a very important tactic in building an effective marketing campaign. K.I.S.S. stands for “Keep it Simple, Stupid” and goes hand in hand with another one of my favorite marketing expressions: “You only get one chance to make a first impression.” In 2012, US businesses spent over $171 billion on advertising and marketing campaigns designed persuade consumers. That’s a lot of money! And, arguably, much of that was spent without following this simple concept. Since the stakes are so high, make sure you consider the following 5 important keys to K.I.S.S. when writing your marketing plan:

1.) Benefits sell, features tell
  • Feature: “The Volvo S-80 has dual-stage side impact airbags for both the driver and front passenger."
  • Benefit:  “You and your family will be safe from head-on and side impact collisions when driving the Volvo S-80.
2.) Humor is overrated
  • Humor is hard to pull off and even harder to make effective.
  • What could go wrong?
    • Your prospective customers may not understand the humor, or worse yet, won’t think it is very funny
    • Just because someone thinks the message is funny doesn’t mean they will remember the advertiser (think about all those creative Super Bowl ads)
    • Creating humor in your advertising message often takes valuable time that could be better spent selling the benefits of your product or service
3.) Less isn’t necessarily more, but too much is definitely not good!
  • Your message should be written as an invitation to find out more about your product or service – no more, no less
    • “To see how much homes in your neighborhood are selling for, go to”
  • Your commercial messages will never provide as much time to talk about your products or services as your salespeople or marketing representative will have…so don’t try
  • One of the sure fire ways to have your advertising message lost is trying to include too much information at one time

4.) Keep it Short & Sweet - short words and phrases work
  • Short statements, claims, benefits, web addresses, and names are easier to remember than long ones, so make it easy for the consumer to remember you
    • “15 minutes could save you 15% or more on car insurance…”
5.) Be interesting
  • Make your advertisements interesting and/or entertaining, but remember you only have 3 seconds to capture and hold someone’s attention
    • One of my personal favorites is this opening used by a heating/air conditioning contractor:  “Your wife is hot!”
    • Now they have your attention to talk about their air conditioning repairs or specials
  • Don’t save the best for last, you may never get there.
    • “50% off a complete furnace check-up” – If your offer is the compelling reason that will get your prospect to contact you, start with it
    • Begin with the punch line…then tell the joke 

K.I.S.S. - It’s an easy principle. Follow it and your advertising message will be much more effective!

An effective method to developing a powerful commercial message is through brainstorming.  Here is a step-by-step guide to making your next brainstorming session productive.

Brainstorming Guide to marketing effectiveness

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Tags: Marketing Strategy, Advertising, Advertising Creative



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