Recent Posts

Our Newest Web Project Launches

Aug 21—We are happy to announce the birth of our newest baby - a brand new website for Warkwyn Associates. Who? Warkwyn is an accomplished audio design and engineering firm. We are sharing this news with...Read More

Look Like Who You Really Are

Jul 30— Do you look like who you are? This question is not an “if a tree falls in the woods” Zen kind of question. What we are really asking is: "Do your graphics and other marketing...Read More

Redefining the word Customer

Jul 01—We recently attended the InfoComm trade show in Las Vegas and came away thinking about the meaning of the word “customer” and the way one’s definition influences a brand’s marketing...Read More

Point Of Sale Displays that Sell Product

Jun 17—You are already using the Internet, social networks and traditional media to reach the customer with your brand story. But if you’re not telling your unique brand and product story at bricks and...Read More

What do your customers think of you

Jun 03—A special guest blog by Wendy Price Some of you may say, “I already know what they think.”  Others of you might say, “I’ll just ask my sales people and account managers...Read More

Ten Print Advertising Tips

May 22—In our last blog we made a compelling case that print advertising is relevant and valuable even in this digital age. Now we turn our attention to a handful of basic techniques for making your print advertising...Read More

The Value of Print Advertising

May 07—We almost always include print advertising in our clients’ marketing and media plans. Sometimes we get the reaction “Print? Really? We hear that print is dead.”  There is no...Read More

Making Text More Readable

Apr 15—Words. Every marketer needs them. Sometimes you need a lot of words to get your sales message across. (In our imaginations) our readers hunger to fully understand the marketing techniques we...Read More

Retail Reality-Product Demos-and You

Apr 02—Remember when owning a decent stereo was a major life goal and when shopping in a hi-fi store was fun? We are unapologetically nostalgic for the days when retailers actively sold A/V products; when the...Read More

Ma Mark Marketing or the Importance of Email Subject Lines

Mar 19—Regular readers of the CE Marketing Prose newsletter may have noticed oddities in our last two emails. The February 19 edition went out with the subject line “Mark” in place of “Marketing...Read More

How to Stay out of the Trashcan or the Lessons Learned from a Parking Lot

Mar 04—Marketers of CE products should count themselves lucky. We have it easy; we’re selling fun stuff – toys that help people enjoy great music and entertaining movies and TV programming. But just...Read More

Five Ways to Make Time for Customer Outreach

Feb 19—“Time keeps everything from happening all at once." - Henri Bergson  If you’ve read our website or spoken with us about marketing you know that we’re absolutely rabid...Read More

Brands that Communicate Win

Feb 05—The most successful brands regularly keep in touch and stay top of mind with their customers (end-users and channel partners) via blogs, newsletters and social media. With the advent of new Google search...Read More

Content is Definitely King since Google Changed Search Algorithms

Jan 28—The word “algorithm” is the equivalent of Ambien – it puts most people right to sleep. So it is miraculous that we actually read the news about Google’s newest search engine algorithms...Read More

How Pawn Takes Queen

Jan 20—We would like all of our readers to believe we are the source of all marketing wisdom and insight.  While that is largely true, sometimes we stumble upon someone who has written an article that perfectly...Read More

Should High-End CE Companies Bother with Social Media

Dec 11—On several occasions clients have asked us whether it was worth their time and effort to participate in social media outreach. The tone in which the question was asked told us that the answer they wanted...Read More

Rants from the Frozen Tundra

Nov 25—A friend of ours from the land of baby seals* was inspired by our blog Turning Bad Consumer Reviews into Good  to send us a couple of rants regarding Big Mistakes he sees CE manufacturers consistently...Read More

Flying Without Navigation

Nov 13—Or how we learned to stop worrying and love the research bomb* Imagine you are on a jumbo jet for a 15-1/2 hour flight from LA to Australia. Just after takeoff the pilot announces, “Ladies and...Read More

Coal into Diamonds - Turning Bad Consumer Reviews into Good

Oct 26—We often advise our clients to allow consumers to post reviews on the company website. From the looks of horror on their faces you would think we had proposed offing Granny for the insurance money....Read More

Direct to Consumer Sales and Channel Stress

Oct 14—One of the many services we offer our clients is helping develop direct-to-consumer sales programs for their websites and email communications. When we’ve mentioned that option to some potential...Read More

The Top Twelve Things Your Website Needs To Do - Part Three

Oct 02—In our previous two blog posts we wrote about eight of the top twelve things a brand's website needs to do to be effective. If you didn't read Part One and Part Two you might want to...Read More

The Top Twelve Things Your Website Needs To Do - Part Two

Sep 17—In our last blog post we wrote about four of the top twelve things a brand's website needs to do to be effective. If you didn't read Part One you might want to do that now...................Done? ...Read More

The Top Twelve Things Your Website Needs To Do - Part One

Aug 28— It should be unnecessary to say it in this day and age but just for the record – Your website is the single most important weapon in your marketing arsenal. Don't believe it? When you're...Read More

May 22

Ten Print Advertising Tips

In our last blog we made a compelling case that print advertising is relevant and valuable even in this digital age. Now we turn our attention to a handful of basic techniques for making your print advertising more effective.

  1. Don’t try to say everything.

    The temptation is always there to communicate all the qualities of the product or service in one ad, but if you try to do that you will end up with an ad that is too busy and wordy and still falls short of the goal.

  2. Drive readers to your website.

    Your website is the place where you should have all the information about a product that anyone would want to know, so drive the reader there with a noticeable URL. A simple “For more information visit: www.Your” will do the job nicely. The ad should be compelling enough to make readers want to learn more. 

  3. Use measurable URLs.

    If you advertise more than one product and/or in more than one publication, you’ll want to track each ad’s effectiveness. You can accomplish that by using a unique URL in each ad. You can use your web analytics software to track how many readers use each unique web address. For example if Bob’s Audio is advertising the Framitz 1000 model in Sound & Vision and TAS the URLs could be and respectively.

    If Bob can’t get appropriate domains, he could do something like this: and Many people will not bother to use the extension after “/” but enough will that Bob will at least get a relative indication of which publications and ads are drawing the most interest.

  4. Picture people as well as products.

    It is a measurable fact that readers’ eyes are drawn to images of other people.

  5. Don't pander.

    Some people are going to read tip #4 and get the brilliant idea to use images of scantily clad attractive women in their ads. Don’t do it. Readers are not dumb, they’ll know you are pandering and using a clumsy advertising trick and many of them will resent you for it. Years ago we tested car stereo ads with 16 – 24 year olds (mostly males). One of the ads under test featured an attractive woman. We were stunned to see that it tested poorly. We even got some comments along the lines of “Yeah she made me look twice but she distracted me from the product” and “I knew that was an ad trick and thought less of your brand.”  From the mouths of babes (so to speak)…BTW, the CE Marketing Pros never, ever pander by using provocative images. 

  6. Use great photography.

    People absolutely judge books by covers. Your brand will be judged by how good your ad looks. Nothing makes an ad look better than a stunning photograph. Conversely nothing says “poor quality” louder than a lousy image.

  7. Remember the Zee (Zed if you are Canadian).

    People tend to scan pages in a “Z” pattern, from top left across the top, diagonally from upper right to lower left and again laterally across the bottom. Keep the most important elements of the ad in those zones, especially your logo. This is not a hard and fast rule, other layouts can be effective too, but when in doubt stay with the tried and true "Z.".

  8. Choose background colors carefully.

    For a time black background ads, websites and other marketing media were the rage among purveyors of luxury goods. We get it – the right photo against black looks really dramatic, but it has been overdone in the CE industry. We’ve noticed that more and more luxury brands have switched to light backgrounds and we like the way they look and read. Try something new – look different.

  9. Focus on the benefits.

    Too often we see CE product ads with lots of techno babble but little in the way of benefits that consumers can relate to. For example: “The B-Vox 8000 features composite ham sandwich cones,” says nothing of value to most consumers. It would have been better to use: “The B-Vox 8000’s composite ham sandwich cones bring the musicians to life in your listening room.”

  10. Focus on your differentiation.

    Take a long hard look at your brand and products and isolate those technologies or features or services that make you stand apart from your competition. While "better performance" is important, it is hardly a unique claim and cannot stand alone as a point of differentiation.  Hard as it may be to admit, your competitors make great stuff too. Dig deep, and identify your differentiation and make sure that comes across in your ads.

  11. Bonus tip!

    When in doubt you can always reach out to old pro marketing execs who know the CE business to help you design and write your ads. Know anyone like that? Contact us


About CE-Marketing Pros
We’re a full service marketing/advertising agency specializing in helping consumer electronics brands and retailers compete more effectively. Former marketing executives with two of the most successful CE brands, Al Ballard and Paul DiComo help brands STAND OUT in a crowded and confusing CE marketplace. 



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