Club Insider


Don't Spend Good Money on Bad Ads

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Derek BartonDerek Barton

The big question posed to me is, "How do I advertise in these tough economic times?" Whether in good times or bad, my answer is: Don't spend good money on bad ads.

I just saw an ad for a new gym in, well I won't give the city, because I'd like to protect the identity of a friend of mine. Anyway, it is a bad ad from a good gym owner. I will definitely call him and tell him he should fire whoever created this ad as well as the person who gave the green light to run it.

I'm sure he will laugh and tell me he has no plans to fire himself. He will likely tell me what I have heard hundreds of times from other gym owners, "Derek, that ad works for us."

My reply is always the same, "If a bad ad works for you, just think what a good ad will do for you." Words of wisdom from Jack Fund, one of the best Creative Directors I have ever worked with.

This bad print ad I saw is for a brand new club trying to get members to start working out in the New Year. The ad is 5 1/2 inches by 8 1/2 inches; not a lot of room to advertise, but no matter the size of the ad, you have to emotionally connect with the reader. The biggest thing you notice on this small ad is the year, 2010. It is five inches long by 1 1/2 inches high. Nothing else in the ad comes close to its size and focus.

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