Engagement is the investment

At your next meeting ask your marketing guy (or gal) this question:

How often do we analyze the factors which make for success in our advertising and the factors which make for failure?  

Don't be disapointed if you get a canned speech about advertising being an elusive hybrid art/science that doesn't lend itself fully to rigid corporate and beauracratic processes like measurement.

Right.

Even the grandfather of advertising would agree that half of all the money spent on advertising is wasted, trouble is, he never knows which half.

('Cause if you did know which ads worked --spent a dollar, made two-- why would you ever stop running them?)

These days, some are saying (isolated) advertising = failure.

This from Jeff Jarvis:

In an age when competition and pricing are opened up online and when your product is your ad, you need to spend your first dollar on the quality of your product or service. If you’re Zappos, you spend the next dollar on customer service and call that marketing. If the next dollar goes to advertising, there has to be a reason — and if the product is good enough, that reason may fade away. . . . 

Truth is, traditional ads are risky.  Digital ads, less so.  Unless you don't know cost per click, in which case, you have no business advertising online.

Advertising is far from dead, but unless you've got the next magic bullet consider this:

In an age where ROE (engagement) is quickly becoming more powerful than ROI, it's time to rethink throwing your dollars at traditional channels because "that's the way you've always done it".

Or you can burn your money on the sidewalk outside your office.