What consumers want most from ads!

Here at Lavery Rowe we have been creating direct response press campaigns for over 40-years. Last year we published over 10,000 ads across 350 titles which we estimate resulted in approximately £75,000,000 of direct sales for our clients. The vast majority of these ads were created in-house by our team of 4 designers and 4 artworkers.

Of course, as the UK’s largest buying point of direct response press advertising Lavery Rowe accounts for about 60% off the total UK market, our buying power ensures that our clients benefit from the very lowest media rates but that’s only half the story. Just as important is our experience and understanding of how to engage with readers and drive them to action.

Our 40 years’ experience of creating press ads ensures we can optimise your chances of success whilst minimalising your risk. Something we are always saying to our clients is “the more you tell, the more you sell” and new research from GWI could not support this more. When people were asked what they “want most” from ads, above everything, they wanted product information. At the heart of every good direct response ad is a problem-solving product or service the benefits of which are backed up with an irresistible offer.

Native advertising

How “Native” digital ads can replicate the success of your “Press Advertorials” online

This week we have begun rolling out test proposals for our new D2C digital solution, native advertising!

More engagement
Unlike the disruptive nature of digital display ads (banners), native ads are designed to appeal to the curiosity of the reader and encourage “true engagement”. Readers interact with digital native ads out of genuine interest and just like your newspaper and magazine advertorials, they effortlessly fit in with the surrounding content of the online publication.

Pay per click

An additional benefit is that advertisers only pay for genuinely interested online readers, as the ad is paid for on a cost-per-click (CPC) basis through a programmatic buying model.

Much higher CTR

The efficiency of this type of advertising is reinforced by the fact that native ads produce a click-through-rate (CTR) 8.8x higher than typical display / banner ads. Higher engagement, driven by curiosity and genuine interest drives a much higher CTR.

Build sales or prospects

These native ads generally click through to one of 2 types of landing page. Either a “bottom of the sales funnel” conversion page which aims to immediately convert to sale, or a “top of the funnel” prospecting page designed to inform rather than convert. The latter usually has a call to action at the bottom of this article to take the reader further down the sales funnel, however if readers choose to exit the page, we are able to retarget them with a more performance-based campaign. Ideally both approaches are tested with multiple creatives to determine what gives the highest ROI.

QR Codes

The importance of QR codes for consumers and advertisers!

If you’re not already familiar with them, QR, short for Quick Response, codes are scannable images that can be easily read using a smartphone camera. Upon scanning the code, the individual is then directed to a landing page/website, bridging the gap between offline and online engagement. Since the implementation of them in the governments track and trace program, most people have had no choice but to gain familiarity with this method of direct response. 

It comes as no surprise that we have seen plenty of advertisers adopting these codes into their national press ads. With the implementation of QR codes in press campaigns, we can make the consumer journey from offline to online instantaneous. QR codes negate the need for people to manually type in long URLs or use phone numbers and by simplifying this call to action we are able to increase the likelihood of conversion.

Other benefits include:

– Every QR code has built-in unique trackability unlike a generic URL.

– The ability to create direct links to specific landing pages, videos, demos etc.

– New creative opportunities.

– QR codes could help to prevent advertisers from having to pay for Google searches.

Affiliate Marketing

With the ongoing boom in e-commerce, advertisers need to consider the unique advantages of affiliate marketing!

Affiliate marketing is an incredibly effective performance-based method of generating sales that pays for results, not for ads. Put simply, an affiliate is a marketing partner who sends you leads or sales on a pure cost per acquisition basis.

The way it works is that we provide an affiliate strategy for our clients based on partnerships with high-volume affiliate sites, Voucher code sites, comparison sites and cashback sites are amongst the best partners for this type of zero risk advertising since they generate so much traffic and their primary purpose is to generate sales. Online news publishers are also strongly recommended, as there are millions of people checking their sites for daily news coverage. 

LR Digital have a wealth of experience in the set up and management of these affiliate programs with a huge network of contacts including the largest voucher code sites operating in the UK. We partner with a technology provider that allows us to track affiliates links directly to the sales they have generated on your site. Taking on the heavy lifting with the tracking, reporting, and program growth is our key focus and the best part of affiliates is that it’s paid purely on performance. Affiliates are only due commissions once a sale has been made and confirmed.

UKLPS Direct Mail

Over the last 6-12 months, our partners UKLPS have had several new clients test Direct Mail and this is a great opportunity we wanted to make our clients aware of. With consumers spending greater time at home currently, direct mail response rates in 2020 have been some of the best that we have seen for a number of years. UKLPS manage one of the UK’s largest portfolio of GDPR compliant lists that can reach the 50+ audience. Combined, the team managed over 3 million mail order buyers in the last 12 months alone. These names are available across 25 different mail order catalogues and consist entirely of direct response buyers. These lists are very popular with the Charity sector, however, we have regular bookings from a number of mail order clients across the Health, Clothing and Collectable sector.

 

In addition to the traditional mail order catalogues we are seeing new clients test lists. The age and profile of our portfolio are the perfect match for their target audiences and since these are direct response generated names they are highly responsive.
The various sectors that we have supplied data to include:
Charity
Health Mail Order
Clothes Mail Order
Misc. Mail Order
Collectable
Publications
Home Products
Food
Funerals
Life Insurance
PPI
Mobility
Many of you may already be mailing your existing customers and some may even be involved in the mail order data pools like Abacus & Experian Club Canvasse. However, we have seen small tests of our lists turn into repeat bookings. The direct response nature of these lists mean that the individuals are attuned to receiving offers by post and more importantly buying.

Anatomy of a DR ad

Anatomy of a winning direct response ad by Steve Foster Head of Press Creative – 10 Essential elements

Here at Lavery Rowe we have been creating direct response press ads for over 40-years. Last year we published over 10,000 ads across 350 titles which we estimate resulted in approximately £75,000,000 of direct sales for our clients.

Writing & designing an ad that drives direct sales and at the same time conveys core brand values to the consumer is part art, part science. We can never guarantee results but our extensive experience ensures we can optimise your chances of success and minimise your risk. Below we’ve listed 10 elements that we know can determine the success of an ad:

1.  Benefit driven headline – answers (or creates) a need or desire

2.  Strong (time limited) promotion – SAVE / FREE / BONUS – creates urgency

3.  Guarantee or Trial – make the offer “Risk-free” – removes fear / uncertainty

4.  Body copy – explanation of features / benefits – should emphasise ease of use / speed of results / how it meets the customers needs / satisfies desires

5.  Strong images – images with call-out & captions that emphasise features / before & afters that tell a story

6.  Testimonials – professional / customer / celebrity / ratings – adds credibility

7.  Obvious call to action (CTA) – Phone / Web / Coupon / QR code – demands action

8.  Price – lead with low instalments if available – affordable to all

9.  Basic offer plus up-sell – lead with the lowest price / offer complimentary product / discount on multiples / upsell to an upgrade

10.  Terms & conditions – reduces queries / complaints

This list is by no means exhaustive but it does include many key elements. These then have to be wrapped up and presented in a narrative that is both engaging and persuasive whilst reflecting your brand image and values.

Our experienced team of in-house copywriters and designers look forward to working with you on your next project!

The mood of the nation

Update on the mood and shopping habits of the nation!

As we now look forward to the pandemic passing, feelings fluctuate and it has become difficult to understand exactly where people’s heads are right now. Many are feeling optimistic about the future since the Government laid down an exit-plan as far as restrictions are concerned. Some however, remain apprehensive about the coming changes. But how will the shopping habits of consumers ultimately be affected?

Our friends at Bauer Media recently provided us with a 2021 Insight Study which specifically reports on the moods and habits of the nation in this time and below we have outlined our biggest takeaways from this.

First things first. We have media channels to thank for playing a key role in informing, supporting, de-stressing & providing entertainment during this difficult time. In previous newsletters we have spoken about how newspaper readers are more engaged than ever, spending 24% longer reading their newspaper during the pandemic. Readers connections to their magazines have grown now too! 31% of people say they have a closer relationship with their favourite magazine now compared to pre-lockdown, which makes sense seeing as magazines stay in the home for a much longer time than newspapers. Newspapers & magazines continue to inform, entertain and provide escapism for the nation.

Here are some more insights we thought were worth sharing:

–  55% of people have been shopping more online in the last 6 months. This figure is up 8% vs September 2020, showing not only are there more people shopping online but this number is increasing over time.

–  Trust in e-commerce also seems to have improved as 1 in 3 are more comfortable buying online than they were pre-pandemic.

–  Although many people have taken a hit financially, 23% of people have found themselves spending more than they were pre-pandemic.

–  20% say that they won’t be returning to the high street at all until they see a significant decrease in infection rates.

–  It also comes as no surprise that 39% of people say “it has made me want to make improvements to my home” given the extra time we’ve all had staring at the 4 walls of our homes, noticing the cracks here and there.

–  30% admit to being more adventurous in the kitchen, opening up to new ways of shopping for ingredients and cooking their favourite meals.

–  1 in 5 specifically stated “it’s made me want to upgrade my kitchen equipment”.

–  With the closure of gym facilities, people have taken to home workouts. 1 in 5 have even said “I have been exercising more than I was before lockdown”.

This all points to a more engaged readership searching for goods and services to buy direct. Whilst the end of the pandemic cannot come soon enough, long may the transition to shopping from home continue!

The value of press advertising

Press advertising continues to prove its value against other media channels!  
The ongoing lockdown across the UK has continued to drive high levels of engagement with national press titles and consumer magazines. This increased engagement plus the ongoing closure of high street retail is resulting in record ROI for many D2C businesses. This boom in D2C business is evidenced by the fact that Lavery Rowe clients are placing more ads than ever with the purpose of driving sales via the web, phone and coupon. In the month of February alone this year we have placed almost 1,000 ads in print, an impressive increase of +30% from last year. D2C clients are keen to take advantage of what has been a major shift in consumer behaviour and one which looks set to continue post-lockdown. A recent report conducted by ECI Media Management shows in great detail how “2020 was a year of linear media deflation.” It goes on to outline how most media took a significant hit but 2021 will see the bounce back of inflation across most media channels… all except print that is.
The cost of print media has plateaued despite its increased success at driving direct sales. Print, it seems, has fallen out of fashion with many brands and agencies who undervalue its trusted environment, its wealthy, mature readership and its ability to engage, persuade and sell. As the UK’s largest full-service press specialists, Lavery Rowe remains committed to bringing you the best media deals and the most engaging and persuasive creative so that you can gain maximum advantage from what remains a powerful direct response medium.

LR TV

Lavery Rowe TV launches 8 new campaigns in 1st Qtr. of 2021

Direct to consumer (D2C) sales have continued to boom in the first quarter with all but essential retail still closed. Lavery Rowe has seen this reflected in increased advertising activity across all media channels as clients take advantage of strong consumer demand.

With lead times across most media channels still at 1-2 weeks’ notice advertisers are taking advantage of short-term opportunities with tactical campaigns!

Lavery Rowe TV has seen a huge growth in demand with 8 new campaigns testing in the first 12 weeks of the New Year. The broad range of categories using Lavery Rowe TV services is testament to how powerful a medium TV is when it comes to driving response via web and phone.

Our latest TV campaigns include:

·  Men’s fashion

·  Home improvements

·  Financial services 

·  Gardening

·  Health services

·  Food

·  Mobility

And in every case LR TV both created the commercials, planned and bought the airtime and provided detailed results forecast and analysis.

When buying media, we select the best converting stations against your target audience, then look at how specific programmes index before negotiating the lowest possible price. We combine well targeted low cost media with highly impactful creative that drives both awareness and sales.

 

You can view our portfolio of TV ads here:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbKcieoWBV1q6ImhFIGOheg/videos

To find out how TV could drive more profitable sales for your product or service, please get in touch with your Account Manager or our Head of TV, Andrew McDouall on 07725 573 204 or by email andrew.mcdouall@laveryrowe.co.uk 

LR Digital

A comprehensive digital marketing strategy is essential as online traffic booms

The combination of a hunger for the latest Covid news plus the rush to shop online has led to massive increases in online audiences across all demographics. By way of example News UK’s latest figures (last week of July) show The Sun’s unique visitors up 12% YoY and The Times up 22%. In terms of page-views the increases are far greater – 23% and 47% respectively, meaning publishers have far more inventory to sell in a flat market.

Google & Facebook were quick to lock down Facemask and related search terms from advertisers. This had a massive impact on using digital channels for PPE products however, we have had success with campaigns utilising fringe keywords to drive engagement and more importantly sales.

Arguably one of the biggest winners during lockdown was Amazon. A recent report from Wunderman Thompson Commerce revealed that Amazon’s share of the UK ecommerce market rose to 35% during lockdown (up from 30% at the end of last year) with 1/5 of the 2000 respondents claiming their intention to purchase on Amazon after the outbreak had increased.

Now is the time to engage with Amazon, create a store platform and leverage its powerful pay per click offering as an additional route to market with full transparency of performance. We have managed large & small Amazon PPC campaigns so can advise and deliver.

We’ve also seen the rise of TikTok in the fight for audience attention (Even prompting Donald Trump’s attentions) TikTok offers new creative ways to reach audiences and generate real value with short-form mobile video.

Not only is it a place where quality content meets a huge audience, and highly engaged users are spending increasing amounts of time, it’s also relatively uncluttered with advertising, offering brands a more significant share of voice. Ads are entirely video-based, meaning they blend seamlessly with the app’s native content and never compromise the user experience.

Away from publishers, clients face the challenge of maximising sales from the online traffic they are generating in an increasingly competitive online environment. Here is just a few of the essentials we are encouraging clients to focus on:

  • Create a clean user journey on your landing page. Focus on getting the user to convert.
  • Properly tracking the user journey end to end must be a high priority to gain learnings
  • Multi-channel campaigns deliver better results vs single channel. Planning a TV campaign? Ensure PPC activity is live on Google for your brand terms at the very least to harvest the demand.
  • Trial new digital channels.  Affiliate Marketing is a great performance-based channel that only incurs a cost when a sale is made.