Category: Digital Advertising

5 Mistakes in Your Ads That Keep Customers Away

It’s not hard to find a place for your advertisements—websites, social media and mailers (to name a few) are all great places for reaching your customers. But is your ad itself ready to be shown to the world?

An advertisement is like a cake: it needs to be carefully constructed because one wrong ingredient can ruin the whole experience. Take a look at these 5 common advertising mistakes to make sure your ads are good enough to make sales.

Mistake #1: Having too many goals

Each ad you put in a mailbox or on a webpage should have only one goal. Are you trying to introduce your brand for the first time? Want to entice your viewer into your store or onto your website? Or are you simply reminding your audience that you exist?

Having one goal can help steer how you make your ad while stuffing in too many objectives can confuse the reader so much that they move onto the next ad and ignore yours altogether.

Too many goals get lost in the noise. This ad has two calls-to-action plus coupon offers.

This ad has one simple goal that you can’t miss.

Keep your goal as simple as possible. Try one of these objectives:

  • I want them to fill out a form
  • I want them to know my company exists
  • I want them to call my number
  • I want them to change their mind
  • I want them to make a purchase
  • I want them to avoid a competitor
  • I want them to know where my store is
  • I want them to ask for a quote


Mistake #2: Using random colors, fonts and voices

Think of your ad as if you’re calling your customer on the phone or showing up at their door—they should be able to recognize you within a few seconds.

Using your branded colors, fonts, voice and marketing styles will make you identifiable (and can make your company appear strong and grounded).

Zerorez uses its branded colors and styles for a clean, recognizable look.

If you use randomly chosen colors and typefaces, you run the risk of not only poor design but also not standing out among the thousands of ads people see each month.

Aside from the logo, QuickenLoans uses so little branding that this ad barely stands out.

If you don’t have defined branding, use colors that stand out but don’t over-stimulate, typefaces that are legible for the media (don’t use thin, small lettering on a billboard), and a brand voice that your target audience wants to hear.

Mistake #3: Stuffing in too many elements

Aside from having too many goals, using too many on-page elements within the ad is an easy way to become background noise.

This ad has so much going on, it’s hard to tell who the company is.

Don’t get caught up in the unnecessary details:

  • Too many images
  • The word “phone” before your phone number
  • The word “email” before your email address
  • Design just to fill white space
  • The “www.” before your web address
  • Multiple calls-to-action
  • Social media icons

This ad has a logo, a simple message and attractive art. Even the revere leaves out unnecessary clutter.

Mistake #4: Making your logo too large

You understandably want your logo to be seen, but customers care more about what they can get from you, not necessarily who you are.

Making your logo too large takes away valuable space in other parts of your ad.

It can also attract too much attention—instead of guiding your readers’ eyes to the main purpose of the ad (headline, call-to-action, button), they may spend their few viewing seconds on your logo and move onto the next ad.

There’s little reason for Waste Management’s logo to take up most of the ad.

Well-designed logos are also recognizable even if they are placed smaller in an ad. Unless you’re introducing your brand for the first time, it’s okay to leave your logo readable, but smaller in size.

Irwin’s logo stands out even at 2% the size of the ad.

Mistake #5: Not knowing your audience

Having a defined target audience will make all other aspects of an ad fall into place. Certain demographics view more billboards. Some are more enticed by bright, flashy colors. Others prefer to read several paragraphs of copy.

If you haven’t yet, figure out exactly who your target audience is and use their habits and interests while marketing to them. This can be done via market research, checking out your Google analytics or creating a profile of the majority of your current customers.

Google Analytics gives you an in-depth look at your audience.

About Us

CG Marketing Group is a talented team of creatives and strategists who can make your business awesome. We like to have fun, but we’re very serious about digital marketing.

To sum us up in a single word — Scrappy. We’re always eager to branch out and apply new tactics to create successful campaigns. Our crew works hard to bring value, get results, and keep our clients happy.

See How You Can Improve Your Marketing

Why and How Influencer Marketing Works

With new innovations like the internet and social media come new ways to advertise. One way is by partnering with influencers—social media stars who have big selling authority toward their viewers. Take a look at why advertising with influencers is beneficial for any company.

Influencers: Mini-Celebrity Endorsements

Think of it like celebrity endorsements for social media, but these celebrities aren’t as famous as A-list movie stars. Before social media, the only people you’d pay to hold and talk about your product in an ad would be the biggest and most recognizable celebrities (cue Tom Hanks holding a hotdog).

But with the rise of social media—especially YouTube—anybody with a camera and something to film or discuss can become a celebrity if hundreds, thousands or even millions of people want to watch. These mini-celebrities are called “influencers.”

For example, Bob Clagett started filming himself woodworking and metalworking on his YouTube channel I Like to Make Stuff and now has over 1.4 million people who subscribe to watch his weekly videos.

Why Influencers Work

1. Direct Interest

Users follow influencers when they’re specifically interested in what the influencer is talking about, so product promotions are instantly relatable.

If a seamstress has a YouTube account about sewing, you know that each of his or her followers are interested in sewing, too, otherwise they wouldn’t be following them. Pay that influencer to promote your line of threads and you know that everyone who sees that promotion will already have an interest in threads.

pinterest influencer social media advertising professor pincushion

This is unlike a TV commercial where you need to hope that most people watching The Big Bang Theory would enjoy a Pepsi.

2. Trust

The younger generations—Generation Y (Millennials) and Generation Z—are the most active groups on social media.

These generations are showing more trust in influencers who are prominent in their craft rather than celebrities who have little to do with the endorsed product (a seamstress would know more about threads than an actress from a romantic comedy).

This puts trust at the forefront of advertising, which is something that isn’t easy to do.

3. Immediate Purchasing

The great thing about social media (and the internet in general) is that purchasing is just a click away. Influencers on YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter and Facebook can include a direct link to your website from where they push your product.

You can also include a promotional code to track how many customers come from that influencer. Take for example @alabasterfox, a lifestyle blogger and photographer based in Poland. She has 139,000 Instagram followers and gets thousands of reactions to each of her posts.

In one of her Instagram posts, she shows a skirt and bag from NA-KD where viewers can use the code ALABASTERFOX20 for 20% off their purchase.

instagram influencer social media post dress bag flowers advertising code

4. Smaller Price Tag

Though some influencers have millions of followers, most aren’t as popular as big movie and fashion stars, so their rates are much lower. Many request just a few hundred or few thousand dollars per product post (whether it be a video, photo or text link).

Compared to the hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars required to book a famous TV star or model, that’s a pretty affordable spend.

5. One For Every Niche

There are 1 billion users on Instagram, 191 million on Snapchat, 1.8 billion on YouTube and 2.23 billion on Facebook. With numbers this dense, there are mini-experts on everything from cheeses to airplanes. And with each of those mini-experts come hoards of fans that follow them.

You won’t have trouble finding somebody talking about your product or industry who won’t take a payment in exchange for showing off your latest gear.

Do you own a boutique shop in Maple Grove? Reach out to Claudia Camargo (@milessmilesblog) on Twitter. Want to push your dog training classes past the borders of St. Paul? Send an offer to Franky (@franky.dood) on Instagram. (Even dogs can be influencers!)

instagram influencer social media franky.dood advertising product promotion

About Us

CG Marketing Group is a talented team of creatives and strategists who can make your business awesome. We like to have fun, but we’re very serious about digital marketing.

To sum us up in a single word — Scrappy. We’re always eager to branch out and apply new tactics to create successful campaigns. Our crew works hard to bring value, get results, and keep our clients happy.

Learn About Our Digital Marketing Services

How Businesses Use Google For Growth

Google is one of the biggest tech companies in the world, but few business owners know just how many easy and free tools Google has to promote your company.

Here’s a list of some Google tools you can start using today to help more customers find your business. (Believe us, we use all of these every day!)


Have a website? Then you can do SEO. Search engine optimization (SEO) is the act of tweaking your website to make it rank better in Google. If you have access to edit your website, then you can adjust things like your text and images so that when a user searches for “dentists in Richfield” in Google, your dentistry website shows up.

When ranking websites, Google looks for things like:

  • Keywords
  • Alt text on images
  • Website speed
  • Security
  • Internal and external links

You can even edit the preview listing to better explain what your website is about.

Google AdWords

You know those ads at the top of some Google searches? You can pay to put your website link there, and for relatively cheap. In fact, you can control everything about that ad, like what it says and how much you want to spend (you can set a limit at $10 if you want).

You can even control when it should be shown. For example, if you have a webpage for upscale shoe repair in Oakdale, you can tell Google to show the ad only when someone searches for “skilled shoemaker in Minnesota” instead of “how to repair a torn sneaker.”

Google My Business

On Google, you can have a profile page for your business, much like a Facebook or LinkedIn profile. This is called Google My Business. In this profile, which is free to set up, you can list your name and description, add photos, adjust where you are on Google Maps, and even post updates or events.

Google Analytics

Want to see how many people visit your website? How about how many of them are men versus women or how many use an iPhone 6S?

Google Analytics (another free tool) has a massive amount of info about your website visitors and without being invasive—the info doesn’t include names, emails or addresses, so you can’t tell who specifically is viewing your website.

Google Analytics is a great tool for a few reasons. It helps you see metrics like:

  • which pages are visited most often
  • what time of day most people are on your website
  • how many users are new versus how many have visited before

With this data, you do things like add a “Buy Now” button to the top performing pages, or change the content on the worst performing pages to make users want to read more.

Checking the Competition

There’s never been more publicly available info on businesses than now. If you want to see what Joe’s Pizza down the street is offering compared to your own John’s Dough, check them out on Google.

Take a look at their website quality, their menu prices or how often they show up when you type in “pizza near me.”

More Tools and More Help

This is just a snapshot of some of the best tools Google has for business owners. Here’s a big list of more tools that you can use.

About Us

CG Marketing Group is a talented team of creatives and strategists who can make your business awesome. We like to have fun, but we’re very serious about digital marketing.

To sum us up in a single word — Scrappy. We’re always eager to branch out and apply new tactics to create successful campaigns. Our crew works hard to bring value, get results, and keep our clients happy.

Your Guide to Easy, Last-Minute Holiday Marketing

Once again, the holiday season appeared out of nowhere, and while most of us are just now swapping our sandals for sweaters, shoppers are already working their way down their shopping lists.

With Christmas on the horizon, there may not be time for you to make an in-depth campaign to reach every last customer, but here are a few easy ways to get under a few more Christmas trees this year.

Promotional emails

The average ROI for email marketing is 122% (no typo here – that’s one hundred and twenty-two percent!), which makes sense when it only takes one click from email to website to learn about or buy a product.

If you have a list of email subscribers or already send promotional emails, consider sending one or two before Christmas. Depending on your list size, it may even be free: there’s no charge for MailChimp’s email marketing if you send to less than 2,000 email addresses.

Just make sure your promotional emails have a purpose, a good design (check out some of MailChimp’s or Constant Contact’s templates), and a well-written message.

Digital advertising

A common myth among business owners is that online advertising is too big to easily handle. From ad design to placement to measuring, it can seem overwhelming if you’re new to the game.

Luckily, there are two simple ways to get your digital ad out in front of holiday shoppers, and they don’t include long contracts and weeks of planning. In fact, your ads can start running in a few hours or less.

Social Media

Every day, over one billion people log on to Facebook, 400 million to Instagram, and 100 million to Twitter. For comparison, the Mall of America’s parking lot can only hold 12,750 cars (and some bicycles).

With a huge population and constant activity, social media is a great place to advertise, and each social media site makes it easy for small businesses to start running ads.

It’s actually hard to avoid advertising prompts from Facebook. Head to your company page and see a Promote button on the left, an Advertise Your Business link in the middle, and mock ads in your newsfeed that are ready to run with a few clicks.

You just need to select your audience, choose your wording, and decide how much you want to spend (as little as $10 can go a long way). Other sites like Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest have similarly easy ways to get in front of potential customers.

Google AdWords

Advertising on Google involves a little more organization, but takes out the need to have an appealing photo. Google ads are created to look like normal search results posts, but with a green Ad tag on the left.

Create a Google account, log in to AdWords, and select wording, budget and which keywords your customers may type in when searching for your product. Just don’t forget to set an end date if your ads are holiday-specific.

Website landing page

With all of that email marketing and digital advertising, you’ll need a solid website or landing page to send your users to. Your webpage needs to have an attractive design, clear messaging and an easy route that leads those last-minute shoppers to a purchase.

Social media

Aside from advertising on social media, simple posts from your company pages and accounts can show off products and create brand awareness. And while posts won’t get the same reach to new customers as social media ads, they can still be valuable in your holiday marketing. Try a few of these ideas for boosting sales:

  • Post photos of products
  • Talk about how your staff is preparing for the holidays
  • Post links to your website and product pages
  • Show off your store or office holiday decorations
  • Post an offer or discount

First steps to last-minute holiday marketing

Need help implementing these marketing tactics? We can handle your marketing while you focus on your business.

About Us

CG Marketing Group is a talented team of creatives and strategists who can make your business awesome. We like to have fun, but we’re very serious about digital marketing.

To sum us up in a single word — Scrappy. We’re always eager to branch out and apply new tactics to create successful campaigns. Our crew works hard to bring value, get results, and keep our clients happy.

Schedule a
Free Consultation

    Free Consultation Form

    X - Close