ADvise Articles for Media Magazine
Written by Sam Harmon


As the Wicked Witch of the West said as she slowly melted into the castle floor “What a world. What a World.
Things have changed since September 11. And as we all slowly dig out of the rubble to try to get a breath of fresh air, we become aware of a different attitude during this Holiday season. Consumer priorities and values have changed.

Now is a crucial time to reevaluate every aspect of your businesses advertising. Everything. Your customers latest perception of your products/services. How your products/services fit into your customers priorities. The message your advertising is presenting in response to your customers current attitudes. The usage of your ad budget during these volatile economic times. What elements in your ads are now the most important. Yes, the list keeps going and going. One thing is for sure, if the recent events have not effected your relationship with your potential customers, you can count your blessings (and not change a thing). Then again, maybe they have and you may be missing a potential opportunity.

Once the dust and smoke clears, rebuilding begins. Often, the results can be more efficient, more focused, less complicated, less expensive and surprisingly refreshing. Depending on your level of creativity, change can also open new opportunities with new customers. Assumptions can be dangerous in this new business environment. Research is the key. Actually, research is ALWAYS the key to effective advertising. But in regards to the instantaneous economic and sociological changes, research also means reevaluation.

A few base-level ideas for attaining some research:
1. Review your local and national trade publications for recent trends, speculations and forecasts.
2. Build an open, objective communication bridge with five or more businesses like yours in different cities throughout the country in similar markets. Work together to share the positives and negatives of each of your business and advertising efforts.
3. Search newspapers from different cities to identify advertising trends and patterns in your particular market. If something is unique, call the business and ask about the effectiveness of the strategy.
4. Creatively ask your customers what would make your business ideal for them and look for a pattern.


If you have any questions about your advertising,
Sam Harmon can be reached at Impact Advertising Services: 503-233-4408.