Advertising Myth vs Reality

December is fast approaching and you know what that means for those of us in Hamilton.  Nope, I’m not talking about Santa Claus (whether you think he’s a myth or real).

The new Hamilton Ontario phone books are distributed every year in late November/early December.

For most of the 20th century, local businesses relied heavily on traditional print media such as the yellow pages, newspapers etc., to advertise their business. As with all print media, advertising rates are based on self-reported distribution numbers, which can be quite mythical in proportion.

Example – last year in Dundas, a small business with 2 telelphone lines and 3 staff members received 14 local phone books (12 of which went immediately into the blue box).  Yet advertisers in that phone book were paying rates based on the 14 books distributed, not on the 3 people that may (or may not) have ever seen their ad; nor even on the 2 books they kept. What must have looked like a bag of presents to the advertiser based on the reported distribution numbers may have seemed more like a lump of coal every month when they got their phone book advertising bill.

Compare this to PPC (Pay-Per Click) internet marketing, which may present an ad in search results to thousands of viewers, without the advertiser ever being billed for it. Only if someone clicks on their ad, does the CPC (Cost-Per-Click) come out of their maximum spend monthly Adwords budget. Average cost per click can vary greatly from 10 cents to $25 or more, depending on the competitiveness of the keyword being targeted.

What’s more, the PPC advertiser doesn’t have to wonder if his ad is working, or pay any more than he wants to, for his advertising every month. Detailed Adword campaign reports will identify exactly how many users clicked on the ad and went to his website, and he has complete discretion over how much is spent every month with a maximum monthly spend budget.

Now that’s pay for performance, and it’s not a myth, it’s the reality of PPC advertising.

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