The One Thing Everyone Gets Wrong about Digital Marketing

How To Write Advertisements That SELL – (7) Top Tips To Rake in the $$$

It is almost Tragic..
I’ll be Honest.
There’s only a few Zimbabwean companies trying to run online Ads.
Sadly, most do it TERRIBLY.
It’s not like they have they money to waste either. Shame.
Those companies might as well be burning cash for all the good it does them. 
Don’t worry.
This weekly blog is your road map to building a multi-million dollar African Company.
I’m going to show you how to make lots of money.
 A big, bold promise, I know.
Online advertising takes dedication. Reading this information to completion and absorbing these ideas takes effort. The input is worth the time, I promise
Every sales-boosting idea you’re about to read has been tested and proven to work in almost every industry.
I present SEVEN top tips to turbo-charge your advertising campaigns. These are high level digital marketing concepts.
Listen, learn and you will see an Instant Difference as your bank balance swells.

Tip 1: Professionals plan out campaigns.

Digital Zimbabwe Planning
Planning should take up a great deal of the time you dedicate to a campaign.
Simply boosting a post or running an advert without a specific sales funnel and a measurable goal to accompany the promotion is a total waste of money. 
The 40/40/20 Rule
Let’s look at your marketing campaign as a big pie chart. 40% of that pie is your audience. Another 40% of the pie is your offer. The last 20% is your copywriting and creative content.
So by putting the right offer in-front of the right audience, you are 80% there.
Think about that – no matter how flashy your writing and images are, if the offer is not right for your audience then you are dead in the water before you even start.
Think long and hard about who you serve and what you can offer them. 40/40/20 Pie Chart Digital Zimbabwe

A marketing plan means setting a goal for your campaign and a budget that you can measure. 

Are you aiming for sales, signups, engagement or growth?
Think deeply about your dream customer and answer these questions before posting a thing:
  1. Who are they? 
  2. Why do you want to help them? 
  3. How can you help them?
  4. What are their pain points & objections to your product or service?
This is what advertising legend David Ogilvy had to say on planning out your campaigns:
You don’t stand a tinker’s chance of producing successful advertising unless you start by doing your homework. I have always found this extremely tedious, but there is no substitute for it. First, study the product you are going to advertise. The more you know about it, the more likely you are to come up with a big idea for selling it.”
“Now comes research among consumers. Find out how they think about your product, what language they use when they discuss the subject, what attributes are important to them, and what promise would be most likely to make them buy your brand.”
Mr Ogilvy was responsible for several of the most successful & profitable advertisement ever written. He became so rich that he lived in a French Castle. Take his advice.

Tip 2: Consider which Customer you are Targeting.

Digital Zimbabwe Customer Targeting
You must quickly grasp the key concept of “customer awareness.” 
The idea was pioneered by Gene Schwartz, a titan in the advertising world. His book “Breakthrough Advertising” costs more than $500 on Amazon right now. It’s worth every penny! 
Gene Schwartz’s Customer Awareness scale looks like this.
Unaware – Problem Aware – Solution Aware – Product Aware – Most Aware
5 stages of customer awareness
This is where all you preparation starts to pay off!
You must learn to create a sequence of content that takes your prospects from Unaware to Most Aware.
How you communicate to someone who has never heard of you should be very different from what you say to a customer who is salivating to buy your stuff.
Think about it…
Every single person out there on the internet is at a different level of “customer awareness”. Some of your prospects are previous customers, some are new to you and sceptical about your brand, some have been considering you for a while, some prefer your competitors… You get the idea.
How you talk to each of your target prospects should be very different.
The basic rule of thumb is this: The further along the customer awareness scale the prospect is, the more direct & straightforward your offer should be. For the Unaware or Problem Aware prospects, feel free to have fun with indirect copywriting leads and storytelling. (I’ll have more about these methods in a future blog)
PRO TIP: Knowing “what your prospect knows about you” before you begin a campaign puts you a million miles ahead of your uninspired competition.

3: Measure Everything - Test Everything

Digital Zimbabwe Measure and test

“What can’t be measured can’t be managed”

Let’s talk briefly about analytics.
Scary word maybe, but it basically just means measurement in the digital marketing world.
How do you measure how effective your ad is?
How do you figure out what’s working? Is the headline or the image the problem? Your best performing advert is your “control”. You should always be testing ways to try and “beat the control”. Test your headline, your lead, your copywriting, your call to action and your images
All of this can be answered by Analytics.
First, you will have set up the Google Tag Manager and the Facebook tracking pixel on your website so you can actually measure your conversions. 
This all sounds super technical right?
Don’t panic yet, it is not as difficult as it sounds. You can easily do it yourself by following an online tutorial or two. Or you could always pay somebody like Digital Zimbabwe to do it for you😊
Once setup, there’s all sorts of fun stuff you can test & measure using Google Analytics and Facebook Ads Manager. 
To name a few – 
  1. Which headlines work best in adverts?
  2. Which images convert the best?
  3. Do prospects prefer long copy or short copy?*
  4. IG vs FB vs Google Ads
  5. Conversion rate (how many customers reach a set goal on your website)
*Copy describes all the words underneath the headline of an advert.
I will dig deeper into analytics in a later blog (and show you how to run the most effective Facebook campaigns) but for now I want you to understand the basics of planning an online ad campaign.
By the way, If you haven’t read my post on “Positioning” go back and do that here before reading any further.
It’s a ten minute read that you need to understand before proceeding.
Read it because if your offer does not match with your audience everything else I say going forward is a waste of your valuable time.

Tip 4: All marketing is about Transformation.

Digital Zimbabwe Transformation
All marketing is about Transformation. Transforming your customer from their current unhappy state to a better, happier state using your product or service. Your product or service is the bridge between those two vastly different worlds.
This is known as the B.A.B sequence
The Before, After, Bridge 
Before: What their life is like now, with the pain 
After: What they want it to be like with the problem gone 
Bridge: How they can get there
When I sit down at my laptop to craft an advertisement, I know that if I really can convince you with my words that my product or service will move you from your present problematic state to a better, happier or healthier state and is worth the money, then you will pay me handsomely. I also understand that unless I can convince you to believe what I am saying is true, you’re going to be very sceptical of my declarations . You need proof of my claims. Client Testimonials are one effective way of providing proof of your claims.

Tip 5: Awareness Campaigns and Direct Response Campaigns.

Digital Zimbabwe Direct response Awareness campaigns
There’ are only two goals you need to have in mind when posting or crafting advertising campaigns online. You will hear about all sorts of other campaigns, but let’s keep it simple early on.
When you are running an “Awareness campaign” you are trying to get people who haven’t heard of you to take notice of your brand. Think of an awareness campaign like you would a dashing romantic interest. First, you need your future date to know you exist, to engage with you, only then can you make them laugh and show them how great you are. You only ask for a kiss when you see they are comfortable and relaxed with you. The same process applies when selling anything online.
Awareness campaigns take place at the top of the sales funnel. This is the beginning. You are taking a customer from Unaware to Product Aware on a customer awareness scale.
What about people who are already aware of your product?
Then its time to pull out the big guns…
I’m talking about a “Direct Response Campaign
So many brands post pictures on the gram and think they are social media mavens. Sorry to burst the bubble! Unless you know how to successfully close the deal and actually convert a prospect, you’re still an amateur. 
Direct Response advertising is exactly what it says on the tin. It is a communication designed to elicit an immediate response from the reader, to pull out their debit card and buy from you right then and there. An infomercial is an example of a direct response advertisement because you must buy right then and there…”while stocks last ” 
As copywriting legend John Caples wrote in Advertising for Immediate Sales: 
“There are a lot of good advertisements that are weak in the final urge to act. They are like salesmen who are charming talkers but weak closing men. If they had the right stuff they would pick the reader up by the collar of his coat and the seat of his trousers and stiff-arm him into a showroom. But, instead, these advertisements leave him sitting placidly in his chair, turning the pages of a magazine or newspaper.”
Many copywriting heroes such as Caples have found fame and fortune through direct response advertising. Learn to use master copywriting tactics like Scarcity, Guarantees, Testimonials & Risk Reversal in your writing to bag those riches. (Techniques I discuss in an upcoming blog)
PRO TIP: If your prospect is hot and ready to buy, it is a mistake not to brazenly and confidently ask for the sale. If your marketing funnel is set up correctly, there should always be customers ready to pull out their wallets with a little nudging.
P.S. I’m pretty good at turning boring words on a website into killer copy that effectively converts your prospects into high paying customers. 
Contact me here to get as many clients, customers & sales as you can possibly handle.

Tip 6: Build a Landing Page!

Digital Zimbabwe landing page
All Zimbabwean websites suck. Well… almost all of them.
Do you know why your website of pretty pictures and words will ALWAYS fail ??
Because a website’s purpose is not to entertain, but to persuade consumers to part with billions of dollars every day in exchange for products and services.
The single biggest mistake that I see Zimbabwean companies make is not building a landing page for a Direct Response Sale Campaign.
Picture the scene.. you are at home on the couch scrolling through Instagram, when BOOM, you see a luxury hotel near you is running an incredible sale. 
They have a great attention capturing headline.
  • The photos are captivating. 
  • The copywriting draws you in…
It’s been ages since you took a holiday! Your excitement builds… You eagerly click on the link to “learn more” about this “amazing sale” only to be redirected to the home page of the hotel website where there is no information about the sale. There is literally nothing about the Sale! You can’t continue. (I’ve seen this a-lot!) It’s like a road sign leading to a dead end. Frustrated and angry, you will leave that page faster than a cheetah chasing it’s next meal. 
Every step of the sales funnel should feel congruent, like walking down a set of stairs.
A landing page is an essential part of an online sales funnel. 
If you are running a growth campaign, by all means, send people to your Instagram profile and Home page. 
But all direct response sales campaigns should be run through a landing page built specifically for that campaign. Capisce ?
A good sales campaign should feel like slippery slide. The advert should whet your appetite, then seamlessly take you to a sales page that gives you more information and converts you into a paying customer.
PRO TIP: Your landing page should actually look like your advert creative as much as possible so the prospect knows they are in the right place. Same colours, same images. This congruency gives your prospect a feeling of comfort.

Marketing should be easy and it should work. 

I am an expert at crafting landing pages that convert prospects from strangers to raving fans. I do this by using a proven copywriting framework. I’ll guide your customer by the hand all the way to the sale.
Contact me here

"If the visitor can’t find something easily, it does not exist."

Tip 7: Absolutely Nobody cares about your "Brand" (maybe your mum).

Newsflash: Your brand is not the hero. Your customer is.
Guess What Guys.
Customers don’t care about your history or your company culture. They don’t care about your awards, or if you are green energy compliant. They certainly don’t want to hear about how you “aim to be the best” 🤮
Listen closely…They care what you can do for them. That’s It! Burn that into your brain.
Consumers all think the same thing before making any purchase decision. They all want to know what they’re going to get out of the deal. 
They all want to know, “What’s in it for me?”
Or as Clayton Makepeace put it his Total Package Blog.
“The only reason any rational human being ever purchases anything is to derive a benefit from it! That means … any scrap of sales copy that fails to clearly, dramatically, emphatically, credibly, and repeatedly present the benefits a product will deliver is destined to fail miserably.”
The best way to satisfy your prospect’s curiosity to this question is to learn to talk about benefits instead of features. 
For example, let’s imagine you own a big bedding shop:
A feature is  “a big, comfortable king size bed with Egyptian cotton sheets.”
A benefit is “ a peaceful night of rest that feels like you’re cocooned in the clouds. You’ll wake up in buttery-soft sheets, feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.”
See the difference?
So stop talking about yourself and your company so much, NOBODY CARES. Start talking about what you can do for the customer to make their life better and watch the cash roll in.
Aim to write about benefits instead of features.
Here’s a great way to do this. Ask yourself “so what?” After every line you write.
  • You have a great plumbing service? So what? How does that help me ?
  • You’re a great chef? So what? How does that help me ?
Keep refining your message until its loaded to the brim with benefits for your customer.
Of course, you can talk about your brand, mission and purpose. Just do it through the lens of the customer and do it with connection and empathy in mind. 
PRO TIP: If you’re struggling to write a great headline throw your strongest benefit in there.
Does your company want to capture leads, grow your sales and drive more traffic ?
Digital Zimbabwe is the countries first full stack digital marketing agency. We are here to supercharge your company’s digital growth. Contact us here.
This is my second blog, thanks for reading. 
I have so much amazing Free value that I am excited to share with you over the next couple of weeks. I’m really kicking this blog off with tons of value for you.
Next week’s blog is all about how to not only survive but thrive in a post pandemic environment. 
It’s titled “5 Advertising Secrets To Help You Sell Like Crazy After Covid-19”
These will be actionable tactics that will immediately help you navigate the brave new world of digital marketing in 2022.
You’re going to get so much valuable information for free from this next one.
My name is Josh.
I am a full stack digital marketer. I specialise in branding, social media marketing, digital advertising campaigns and copywriting. I also build online sales funnels that convert prospects into paying clients. If you would be interested in working with me then please email me here
I’m here to help Zimbabwean entrepreneurs and companies grow their brands and make sales online.
I’m also giving away (5) twenty-minute one-on-one digital marketing consultations. This will be a live Skype/WhatsApp/Zoom call where I answer any questions you have about marketing your brand online in Zimbabwe. If this is something you need right now, Sign up here.
P.S: If you have friends who might benefit from this blog, I would love it if you shared this post with them. (the share buttons are below)
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1*.Incase you were wondering that stands for Search Engine Optimisation, Search Engine Marketing, Pay Per-Click Advertising, Conversion Rate Optimisation and Social Media Marketing.)
2*. Al Reis & Jack Trout. The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing


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