You Can Learn A Lot From A Reindeer

Does your advertising work as hard as you do? If you find your ads produce erratic results -- or no results -- it's time to make changes.
Fill in these blanks: “_______________, the ______-Nosed Reindeer”. If you live in a Western nation, you had no trouble providing the missing words. Indeed, you most likely recalled the story of Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer, immediately. Your business has a story to tell, too. If you asked your customers, would they know your story as well as they know Rudolph's?
Maybe this reindeer can teach us a few things.

Rudolph's Compelling Message

Not an ordinary reindeer, Rudolph had a red nose. This was his Compelling Sales Proposition (CSP). No other reindeer could supply such a benefit. As an advertiser, you must find the single most compelling aspect of your business from the customer's viewpoint that your competition cannot or will not offer.
To find out your CSP, ask your customers why they buy from you. Keep an open mind – the information you obtain may contain some surprises. Then, boil the reasons down to the single most important one the competition is unlikely to match.

What Was He Selling?

Rudolph was not offering just a red nose, he was offering a bad weather guidance system. His red nose was a feature...the ability to travel safely through poor visibility was the real benefit. To determine the benefit your product or service supplies, you must again look at it from the consumer's point of view.

Sing It Again...And Again

Two other advantages Rudolph enjoyed were that his message was set to music, and it was repeated with great frequency. And that got lots of people to sing along.
The benefits of a musical image for your business are enormous. Provided the image is musically memorable (consumers can sing along with it) and the song is heard often enough, it will never be forgotten. Think of the old slogan line for Winston cigarettes: “Winston Tastes Good, Like A ______________ ____________.” If you're over 50, you can supply the missing words (“Cigarette Should”), even though Winston has not used that slogan for decades. In fact, that Winston musical image has not been heard anywhere for over 50 years...yet millions of people still remember it. This is the power of the musical image when correctly applied.

What Did Rudolph Miss?

If our reindeer were conducting a “real” advertising campaign, his message would need a call to action...a reason to use his services right now. Unlike Rudolph, you probably want business more than one night per year.
Along with this call to action, your ad needs to position your business for future sales among customers who are not in the market today. This can take the form of your CSP. If Rudolph were running an ad for his services, it might be: “I'll guide you tonight faster and safer than anyone else. Call now, and I'll be there in 15 minutes or less [call to action]. Rudolph's Guidance Systems...I'll always see you home...even when you can't.[CSP]”
Your ad messages must tell the story of your business, provide a compelling reason why customers will benefit from doing business with you, and convey it in a memorable way. This sets you apart from the competition, and results in increased customers, sales, and cash flow.

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