It’s not only the message in your advertisement—but the way you advertise yourself or your business—that sends a message. Advertising on a billboard sends a different message than advertising in a well-renowned publication. So is choosing to advertise through print oppose rather than word of mouth.
When you consider advertising, consider your target market as well as how you would like to be perceived.
All businesses have to use some form of advertising. Whether it be word of mouth or a billboard advertisement, potential customers need to know you exist. Think of how your target market gets its information. Where do they go? What do they do? How do they get their information? This influences where you should advertise.
Aside from your target market, you should also consider your reputation. A lawyer who advertises on park benches—versus one who is relying on word of mouth—creates different perceptions, and attracts different cases.
As much as it is important to get the word out, it is also important to be aware of the perception that you are creating when you advertise. There are always two messages being presented—your advertising message, and the message that is associated with the marketing vehicle you choose.