Advertising Basics

What is advertising?

The biggest mistake business owners make is thinking that advertising and marketing are the same thing. Advertising is a tactic you can use to meet your marketing goals. There are literally hundreds of ways you can advertise, but there are three basic components that every advertising campaign needs: reach, message, frequency.

  • Reach
  • Message
  • Frequency

Advertising Basics

There are hundreds of advertising platforms to choose from. Newspaper, television, radio are known as “traditional ad platforms” and when it comes to other platforms the list is endless. Digital advertising, social advertising, search engine advertising, direct mail, billboards…and on and on. To use any platform correctly you really only need to understand three simple things: reach, message, and frequency.


Reach is simple, who and where your advertising message reaches. You can reach customers actively or passively. You can reach customers by zip code or by address. You can reach women ages 25-54 or adults 60+. Knowing who you need to reach is part of your marketing strategy, knowing how to best reach your idea customer depends on what your objective is.


What are you telling your customers? Is it engaging? Is the message relevant to where they are in the buying process? Is it attention grabbing, credible, and actionable?

The message you choose simply has to be the right message, delivered to the right person, at the right time.


Frequency is how often your ideal customer sees your relevant message. It can take dozens of times before your message sinks in. Think about it like telling your kids to clean their room. They may know they need to, they may want to clean their room, but you have to remind them again and again. Frequency is making sure your message sinks in.

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