We are taking a holiday break from December 24th to December 26th. As you await your order, please account for those three days NOT to be considered business days. Thank you & happy holidays!

You Just Proved Signs Work! Why This Ad Is Completely Useless

September 27, 2014

This post is going to be a bit of a rant that turns into an informative and educational piece on copywriting….at least I hope that’s what happens.

The issue begins with bus bench signs. I’m not sure if you’ve seen the ads on bus benches that proclaim, “You Just Proved Signs Work,” but here in the GTA they’ve been around for awhile. This advertisement promoting the use of signs to market your business drives me crazy for a couple of different reasons.

The Three C’s of Failure 

I should start by saying I understand the concept. The advertiser is saying that the fact you are reading the sign on the bus bench proves they are an effective way to promote your business. You’re reading it, so it works!

What a creative and clever way to get a point across!

Unfortunately, creative and clever make up two-thirds of the three C’s, with cute being the last one. Anyone with experience in the direct response industry knows that cute, clever and creative are considered the three C’s of failure.

Your idea may seem brilliant and you may get copious pats on the back for your creative genius or maybe even an award or two, but it almost always falls flat where it counts the most. 

What It Really Proves

You see, the “You Just Proved Signs Work” ad only proves that people read signs. And it probably didn’t take a big marketing campaign to figure that out. 

If no one calls the number on the sign and uses them to promote their business, then the ad is completely useless. The bus bench signs only work if they result in a lead or a conversion for the company using them.

This message is assuming that because you read the sign, you’re going to follow through and become a customer of the business. And that simply isn’t true. It’s ridiculous, in fact. Unless the person reading the sign takes action, it only proves that people read signs.

So…Do They Work or Not?

Let’s keep in mind, I am ranting about this particular ad and how it is presented. Do I think bus bench signs can be an effective way to market your business? Of course they can! But you have to always be conscious of the fact that they only “Work” if the people reading them contact you and become a customer.

If someone walking or driving by sees your bus bench sign and doesn’t take any action, it only “Worked” to lighten your bank account and take up some space. And if you’ve been told that it’s not meant to produce results now…turn and run away as fast as you can!

There is always a way to make your ads relevant, so they get you the results you want, and it usually begins and ends with the copy. If you think that one of those bus bench signs is a good idea, don’t be one of the many whose sign just sits there without producing any real results.

Figure out what you want it to do, then create the ad that will make it happen! If you’re not sure, we can help.

End of rant. Have a nice day 

P.S. If you want to know whether the “You Just Proved Signs Work” campaign was actually successful in getting companies to advertise on bus benches….you’ll have to give them a call and ask. This was just a rant.

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.

Also in The Content Company Blog

5 Useful Brain Shutdown Tips for a Better Sleep
5 Useful Brain Shutdown Tips for a Better Sleep

October 02, 2018

Continue Reading

Quick & Easy Content Writing Tips: Compliment vs. Complement

August 07, 2018

Compliment vs. complement — I have to admit…this one can be a real bitch. They sound exactly the same when pronounced, you change one letter for spelling, but the meanings are completely different.

Continue Reading

5 Useful Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Hashtags

July 29, 2018

If you’re like many people out there in the digital world, you love to throw a handful of hashtags at the end of each post, message or tweet. It’s likely true that most of you are doing it because you see others doing it, or have heard it’s the right thing to do, but do you really know why?

Continue Reading