Advertising can not fix a broken business. Oh, you might draw potential customers the first time through advertising, but from that point on it’s pretty much that customer’s Personal Experience Factor that determines whether she’ll be back, or not.

Advertising can’t correct your company’s problems, either. As my dear, sweet, saintly old grandmother, Fanny McKay, used to say: “Wishin’ don’t make it so, and neither do massive amounts of gross ratings points.”

Today brought to conclusion a 26 week test that further proves this point.

Here are the facts:

  • The advertiser is a gentleman who came out of retirement to operate a small service business.
  • He truly is a craftsman.
  • He doesn’t intend to work many hours. He’s open from 9:30 am to 2:00 pm, and never open on weekends.
  • He didn’t spend much to buy the business, possibly because of its location.
  • He has a horrid location.
  • We wrote good ads, and explained that the odd hours were the price you paid for the excellent quality of his work at his price, which is much lower than anyone would expect.
  • The ads were voiced by a well-known and loved local personality.
  • The client received over 400 exposures per month on a local radio station, equally rotated through all of the station’s dayparts.

And at the conclusion of six months, and well over 2,400 ads being played to this station’s audience, the advertiser had no improvement in business. None. Nada. Zilch.

Should we be surprised? That a service business in a bad location with hours that most customers couldn’t keep, didn’t see those people changing their lives to do business on his terms?

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Ever been to one of Roy H. Williams free public seminars? People who have attended use such terms as “life-changing experience.” The next one takes place at Wizard Academy on August 4.

I promise that you’ll never look at the world quite the same way again.