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Marketing Tips for Dentists
Published by Galen Stilson
Direct Response Copywriter/Consultant
Dental Marketing a specialty

Results Analysis of Print Ads
Can Be Tricky

When analyzing the results of your print ads, you must be careful.  You shouldn't automatically be dismayed by dismal response.


Because there may be circumstances beyond your control which produce unusually low (or high) results ... circumstances which may only occur occasionally.


Location of an ad within a newspaper can have a significant impact on response.

A bottom-right couponed ad located on a left-hand page often won't pull as well as the same ad on a right-hand page.  Nor will it pull as well in the upper left-hand corner of a right-hand page as it will when located at the bottom right-hand corner.

An ad tucked away in the middle or bottom of a series of ads is at a distinct disadvantage.  Conversely, an ad situated amidst editorial copy will usually pull better.

An ad located in the gutter of a newspaper (the left and right page columns closest to the fold between pages) will generally be noticed less -- and thus produce less response.

If you're lucky enough to have your ad located close to a "hot" article, you'll probably enjoy an uncommonly high response ... assuming that hot article draws readers in your target audience.

Ads running on days when there's a local crisis or natural catastrophe (like flooding or tornado) will, in all likelihood, do poorly.

THE POINT:  Use common sense when analyzing print ad results.  If there are explainable reasons for low response, don't automatically assume the ad is a loser.  On the other hand, an unusually high response doesn't necessarily indicate continuing high response either.  Give your ads a chance to shine ... but once it's clear that they are lackluster of their own accord, don't hesitate to move on and test another ad or two.

Test.  Then retest.

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Copyright 2006 by Galen Stilson. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited.