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What is an Advertorial:How to Sell Without Selling!

Posted on the 11 August 2012 by Jarvisedwards @jarvis_edwards

What is an Advertorial:How to Sell Without Selling!What is an advertorial?

And, why does the name sound so silly?

Better yet, why should YOU bother worrying about such a thing when your current marketing strategy (or lack thereof) works just fine?-—————

-Besides, you’re no stranger to getting your company’s name out there in other ways—you really don’t have time to stress over an advertorial of all things on your plate.

Or do you?

First, let’s define what an advertorial is, and why I even bothered to write this blog post on them. An advertorial is a simple advertisement—with a kick. Here’s the kicker: an advertorial advertises under the disguise of an editorial. In other words, they are created to appear like the articles found in the publications for which they are written.

The untrained eye (i.e. the “average” consumer) may not notice the difference between an advertorial and advertisement. However, a disclaimer—that must note the writing is actually an advertisement—is often present and in clear view of the reader, but not always.

So what is my point?

First of all, advertorials are not as common as many other forms of print marketing. Therefore, if done correctly, a company can compete with and surpass the success of larger companies with much bigger budgets!

What is an Advertorial:How to Sell Without Selling!
 Advertorials usually include statistical information or opinions of credible and authoritative people, including celebrities.  The tidbits of factual information are used to add an approach of educating the audience, not necessarily selling to the audience.

In other words, it’s how to sell without selling! The information in the writing seems to be an objective opinion from a credible source—yet it’s a paid advertisement nonetheless, and it “gets the phones ringing.”

Let’s explore some time-tested, proven tips on how to sell without selling…with advertorials:


I. Always Leverage an Authoritative Name, Brand or Company

Without incorporating some hard facts (statistics) or authoritative names to portray more of an educational piece or news piece, the writing will not be much more effective than an article. Advertorials usually include headlines that speak to inform without directly mentioning any “buy” words. For instance, your company sells heart valves to hospitals; an effective headline would read:

 “New Cure Found For Patients with Clogged Heart Valves”

Further leveraging the expertise of the inventor, doctors and surgeons, the advertorial would include quotes from a doctor, as well as appearing to be written by the doctor. The doctor provides real statistical evidence and experience to the writing, which disguises the fact that—at the very end—the company selling the product leads the reader to their website to make a purchase!


II. Tell the Story, Don’t Sale the Story

Find a balance between selling and informing; this rule is not difficult to employ. Since the goal of an advertisement is to sell, it doesn’t necessarily avoid leading the buyer to make a purchase.

A blatant sales pitch will not yield the best results when using the advertorial approach; readers looking for information don’t necessarily like being sold to—although they like to buy. Ensure the goal is education first, and give the reader their time’s worth. Save the selling for the moment the prospect makes contact!


III. Disclaim Only When Needed

What is an advertorial going to do for you when your ideal audience doesn’t like to read advertisements? The disclaimer rule doesn’t apply to all periodicals, magazines and other print material—it all varies depending on the publisher/company. Knowing that, use a disclaimer only when necessary. Think of it like this: do you want to waste time and resources crafting the perfect advertorial just to have your ideal prospect see the big, flaming “ADVERTISEMENT” next to it? I’m sure the answer is no. If the reader doesn’t figure out your writing is actually an ad in disguise, no harm no foul! Cha-ching!


What is an Advertorial:How to Sell Without Selling!
IV. Include Statistics and Success Rates

Without credible and factual statistics, opinion and testimonials from experts and people that have used the product or service, the advertorial will have less impact. In addition, success rates (including mortality rates for health-related writings) should be included to once again, appear as objective news and not a sales pitch.

Statistics and facts further assist in disguising your writing as a news piece from a credible journalist, reporter or expert—not a copywriter or marketing team!

I hope these tips help you to create your award-winning, wallet-fattening advertorial. Have some good, tested tips that I haven’t mentioned? Feel free to comment and include them.

Until next time,

Happy Writing!

Jarvis Edwards – Commercial Copywriter

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