Only the Mint Can Make Money Without Advertising

Shirley Thom Advertising


I have searched in vain to discover the context of Macauley’s words. He served England in various high-profile capacities, including Secretary of War. What could have prompted him to make this statement? And why, more than 150 years after his death, do his words still catch our attention?

Can it be that advertising works, that it actually does make money? According to a recent Nielson survey, 33% of shoppers believe what a brand has to say about itself. Since advertising is the forum for brand declarations, it appears that commercial advertising can favorably influence a percentage of buying decisions. But it doesn’t work the way people think it does.

33% of shoppers believe what a brand has to say about itselfNielsen Survey

People don’t rush out the door to buy something because they just heard or saw a commercial. But when they’re in the market to buy, they tend to buy what is familiar.

An excellent commercial creates positive memories and feelings that will influence behavior over time. Here’s an example.


People remember the Super Bowl Budweiser puppy commercials. Puppies don’t drink beer, so what’s that all about? It’s about emotion. No one is leaving the Super Bowl channel to buy a beer, but if one believes surveys, 33% of those who saw the commercial will reach for a Bud the next time they buy beer.

Since there is no immediate cause and effect, advertising results can be difficult to measure. You must rely on sales trends rather than next-day receipts.

budweiser puppy and clydesdale

92% of shoppers believe what their peers have to say about a brand.Nielsen Survey
That same Neilson survey showed that 92% of shoppers believe what their peers have to say about a brand. Social media is advertising’s next step, even though it is not perceived to be advertising. It feels more like peer-to-peer sharing.

While 92% is an impressive statistic, equally as important, it is immediately measurable.

Many different providers have created tools that will monitor a variety of social media channels. Companies can track what consumers are saying about their brands and products through social media posts as soon as the posts appear. They can react to these conversations and interact with the consumers through the same social media platforms. Social media must be a part of any advertising plan.

Yes, advertising can make money, but how it makes money is constantly changing, and it is imperative that we stay on top of the changes.