20,000 Years of Advertising

Posted by on October 8, 2012

More than 1,000 businesses will be featured in this book. Each will have fewer than 100 employees. On average, they’ll have been operating for at least 20 years. We’re going to ask them about their advertising.

Research tells you what ought to work.

We’re going to ask these businesses what actually worked.

Actual experience is the highest form of research.

Each of these businesses will be part of a new book to be published in 2013, the halfway point in the upswing of our current “We” generation:
20,000 Years of Advertising
Lessons Learned. Fortunes Made.

Pendulum was released last week. This week we’re making a run at the bestsellers list. Wish us luck.

Two weeks ago, the Wizard of Ads partners held their semi-annual partner meeting in the Veranda Room of the Enchanted Emporium at the entrance to Wizard Academy.

Be patient. All these things are connected. You’ll see.

Each of the partners was given an advance copy of Pendulum.Here’s part of what it says on the back flap:

Roy H. Williams dropped out of college on the second day, choosing instead to “figure it out” for himself. At age 19, he began asking local business owners, “Have you ever done any advertising that you felt really worked? Tell me about it.” After cataloguing their answers, he asked, “Have you ever done any advertising that you thought was brilliant—something you were really excited about— that failed miserably?”

“You only have to ask a few hundred business owners,” says Williams, “before it all becomes crystal clear . . . everyone makes the same mistakes for the same reasons. And the things that work brilliantly have common denominators as well. All the answers, of course, are initially counterintuitive. That’s why everyone makes the same mistakes. I was given thousands of years of collective experience and the results of more than one hundred million dollars in advertising expenditures . . . for free. All I had to do was see the patterns. What a country!”

At 20, Williams began consulting small business owners across America, guiding dozens of them to unprecedented success. Twenty years later, his Wizard of Ads trilogy of business books rose to the top of the New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller lists.

Princess Pennie, the love of my life, said to the partners, “Not long after we were married, Roy spent all day, every day, asking business owners about their experiences in advertising. I think we should do it again. Who is willing to interveiw 50 business owners about their best and worst experiences in advertising?”

The room was a sea of raised hands. I’ve got the greatest partners on earth.

20,000 Years of Advertising
Lessons Learned, Fortunes Made, 
will clearly identify the common denominators of successful small business advertising as well as those costly, seductive mistakes we all seem to make. We’ll quote many of the businesses who participate and we’ll identify our stringers as well. The reader will gain the benefit of 20,000 years of recent, real-world experience on the battlefield of marketing. And this won’t be patty-cake business school theory, either. These battles will have been fought with live ammunition: hard dollars spent by small business owners performing the kinds of marketing experiments entrepreneurs do every day.

What’s a stringer, you ask? A stringer is an independant reporter who is not on the payroll of a major news network but who contributes from the sidelines in exchange for national recognition. The stringer brings a story to the attention of the network and then benefits from the recognition of that association. The first step in getting hired by a major network is to become a valuable stringer.

If you own a small business and would be willing to be interviewed by telephone, please email your name, business name and phone number to Devin@WizardOfAds.com.

If you know at least 20 business owners and would be willing to suggest to them that they volunteer to be interviewed by us, just have them email their name, business name and telephone number to Devin@WizardOfAds.com and be sure they tell us that it was you that asked them to do it. Participants and stringers will be recognized in the book for their contributions and each will receive an advance copy of the hardback when it’s published next year.

Stringers whose names are mentioned in more than 20 emails from business owners will be invited to a special Wizard of Ads training event and given free access to the Wizard of Ads LIVE monthly webcast for a full year, (usually $1,440.)

20,000 Years of Advertising is going to increase the success and prosperity of every small business owner who reads it. And make no mistake; the success of a nation’s small business owners is what drives the economy of that nation.

A “We” generation is about working together for the common good.

Let’s get to work.

Roy H. Williams 

PS – The 2013 Small Business Survey will be conducted in Canada and Australia as well under the leadership of my Wizard of Ads partners in those nations. My Canadian and Australian partners are the authors of some of our biggest successes. The Wizard of Ads knowledge pool is dramatically deepened by their contributions. – RHW

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