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Tips for effective advertising

by Queensland Government

What you say and how you say it in words, sounds or pictures can be vital to your advertising success. Aim for your advertising to:

be noticed

be understood

stimulate action (such as an enquiry or visit to your store)

achieve an outcome (such as a sale).

The following tips will help you to meet these goals.

General tips

Create a distinctive and recognisable format for your advertisements. Be consistent in using this style.

Feature your branding prominently.

Ensure that your advertisement is well organised and easy to follow.

Always include relevant information your potential customers may want to know. E.g. opening hours or your shop adddress.

Make it easy for customers to contact you - do you want them to visit your website, phone or email you, or come into your store?

If you include your prices, make sure they are easy to find and remember.

Ensure that all contact details, product information and prices are up to date and accurate.

Use simple and direct language with everyday words that are easy to understand.

Tell your customers how you can help them with their needs or wants.

Make your unique selling proposition clear.

Tailor your message, style and format to your target audience.

Newspapers, magazines, directories, direct mail and billboards

Use a headline with powerful wording or a memorable graphic to capture attention.

Make sure graphics are high quality so they look good both in colour and black and white.

Do not include too much text, as most readers will only scan your advertisement for the key information.


Show the idea on the screen and back it up with more information (e.g. a print advertisement or brochure delivered directly to the viewer's home).

Don't try to cram every product onto the screen - aim for an advertisement that is memorable, not overwhelming.

Use professional actors (or acting students) or voice over artists instead of family and friends.


Keep it simple and don't try to communicate too many ideas in a 30-second spot - one central idea is more likely to be remembered.

Repeat the benefits of a product, the price and the name of your business so listeners will not forget it.

Use a professional voice-over artist (or student) rather than trying to do it yourself.


Think about what will work best online - don't just take a print advertisement and upload it. You may just want a headline and a hyperlink to your website.

As reading onscreen is not as easy as in print, make sure your advertisement is clean and uncluttered.

Use the language of your target audience to keep them engaged.

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