In Great Promotion The Ad Idea Is Key

Ed BurghardMake it simple. Make it memorable. Make it inviting to look at. Make it fun to read.

Leo Burnett


What is an Ad Idea?

It is the creative transformation of a brand’s strategic benefit into a memorable and persuasive executional idea.

Four Characteristics of a Great Ad Idea

1. About the benefit.

Ad ideas should speak directly to the benefit, or why should your tar- get care to read or listen?

2. Meaningful to your target.

You want your target to relate to your ad idea, otherwise it will get ignored. The single biggest mistake marketers make is to create an ad idea that pleases their management, but their target can’t relate to.

3. Distinguishes your location from the competition.

Locations often have the same benefit to offer. The trick is to posi- tion your location in such a way that makes it more desirable than the competition.

4. Mind & Heart opening

The ad idea gets your target to see your location in a way that they haven’t before. They draw your tar- get in by making them think or feel differently.

Ways To Create More Competitive Positioning In Your Ad Idea Through Strategic Differentiation

Many place marketers believe without a truly unique performance point of differentiation, their location cannot be competitive. However, most locations offer similar overall benefits and the key to differentiation is to either reframe your target’s way of thinking about your location or be more strategic in your approach. Longer-term the solution is to work on your location and create a positive point of difference.

Performance Based Superiority

Strategic distinctiveness

Flat out superiority – You can claim your location delivers a key benefit better than all competitors. Product benefit – Preempt an important category performance benefit.
Superior versus a sub-set – You can claim your location delivers a key benefit better than a specific segment of the competition. Benefit extension – Preempt an important emotional or psychological benefit as an extension of your location’s primary performance benefit.
Reason to believe superiority – Your location has a better subjec- tive ranking than the competition. Reason to believe – Create a unique method of delivery or endorsement for your location’s benefit.
Superior Method – You can claim your location delivers the benefit through a superior method than the competition. Brand character – Preempt a desirable personality, image or attitude for your location.
Exploit a competitive weak- ness – Find a concern with the competition’s location where you can claim yours is superior.


Step #1 – Get attention

Step #2 – Capture the mind & heart

Step #3 – Be memorable.

Leave a comment with your thoughts.

What You Need To Know About The American Dream

Media Coverage

Fox Business 

Wall Street Journal


Regional Business Talk Interview – Dr. Greg Smith

Regional Business Talk Interview 2012 – Ed Burghard

Regional Business Talk Interview 2014 – Ed Burghard

Business Xpansion Magazine

American Dream Case Study Series

Cincinnati versus Ohio and Nation

Indiana versus Michigan

Florida versus North Carolina

New York versus New Jersey

California versus Texas

Pennsylvania versus New York

North Carolina versus Texas

Ohio versus Michigan

How Easy Is It To Achieve The American Dream In Your State?

To view the complete set of State rankings based on the ADCI and five explanatory sub-indexes, download the complimentary 2012 American Dream State Ranking Report.

Download American Dream Report


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