Talking telephone numbers

On the way out she told me her phone number...

I met the girl at a dinner party at a friends house. We got on magically. It was like the other people at the party just blended into the background. As she left she told me her phone number. “Will you remember it?” she asked. Of course I would! It was etched in my mind!

The next morning it was forgotten.

There are things that client insist on going into their radio commercials and the phone number is top on that list. I wonder sometimes how many hours of my life I have spent in discussion with clients to try to make them understand that putting their phone number in a commercial is generally a waste of time. Putting two different phone numbers in is just plain silly. Putting three numbers in (yes, it does happen) is just beyond belief If your business does business over the phone, that is that people purchase by phone, then by all means put the phone number in. You have to repeat it, you have to make it catchy, you have to get people to sing it in the shower. But if you want people to come and buy your product, don’t waste valuable radio advertising time trying to get people to remember a phone number, motivate them to come to you and buy it. I love Dan O’Day’s example, if you were a shoe shop why would someone call you?:

You: Hi, do you sell shoes?

Them: Err Yes! We’re a shoe shop!

You: Great! Thank you.

Then there is a question I ask my clients. How many phone numbers do YOU remember from radio commercials? I’d make a bet its only ones that are sung, repeated, and are easy to remember.

In any radio commercial you should ask for one action and give a good reason to perform that action. So if you want your phone number in a commercial ask the question… “Why should the listener phone?”. If you want a phone response, do a commercial to get a phone response. Otherwise, leave the phone number out.

And web addresses? If you can’t capture a sale at your website, why would you send anyone there?

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