Advertising is simply the process of letting others know about your product or service. Institutional or image advertising is the type of advertising most companies, large and small, use most often.

While this type of advertising can alert the market to the fact that a service exists, it does very little to create a desire in the minds of the buying public to own the product, or at least inquire for more information concerning the product.

A better, more effective and more cost-efficient form of advertising is called direct response advertising. The idea behind this type of promotion is to get the reader or viewer to take some specific action. Either make a call, send an email, pay a visit, or perhaps, send in a reply mechanism.

Institutional or image advertising is fine if all you want to do is promote the image of your company or the services you offer. But when you consider the fact your client or prospect couldn’t care less about your company or the fact you want to sell them something, it adds up to a big waste of your money … money that could be better used elsewhere.

It’s true institutional or image advertising can help build “brand-awareness.” And that’s OK for large corporations with multi-million dollar advertising budgets. But most small or medium-size businesses simply cannot afford to spend their advertising dollars that way.

Most institutional advertising is not customer-focused. Instead, it promotes how great the company paying for the ad is. And because there is no call to action, at best, the results this kind of advertising produces are deferred.

For the most part, people don’t care about how great your firm is. They really care more about what your particular service can do for them.

They have their own wants and needs they hope to satisfy, and they will only buy what you are offering if you can show them how you will satisfy those wants and needs.

That’s where direct response marketing comes in.

This type of advertising shows the viewer or reader the advantages your product or service can provide her and let her know exactly what steps she must take to either get the product or service or to get more information about it.

It’s designed to present enough information to give a compelling and immediate reason for the viewer to take some specific action: send in a coupon, pick up the phone and call for more information, or stop by your place of business.

So why use direct marketing? Direct-response marketing will bring in more responses, more inquiries, and more dollars than any other type of advertising or marketing.

Direct response marketing results will be accountable, trackable and measurable.

That is, you will be able to quantify exactly how many dollars you pay out for your marketing efforts, where your results come from, and how many dollars you bring in as a result.

Direct response marketing is simply the most effective type of marketing for most businesses, and when it is effectively used, it can bring immediate profits to your bottom line.

VisionPATH Business Solutions offers personalized consulting and advisory services to companies large and small. We have a long-standing reputation of providing honest, individualized advice to our clients. No matter your need, whether it is to capture new market share, to streamline processes and cut costs or to add services and grow you business, you can rely on VisionPATH to provide you with honest advice to help you achieve your goals.