How to diversify your advertising spend

Why it’s not a good idea to rely predominantly on one channel.

You’ve heard the cliché that you can have too many irons in the fire. It turns out that when it comes to advertising, this is actually a good idea. The more channels you use, the more likely your message will be seen by potential customers and they will remember it. We’ll explore the traps of relying on one advertising channel, what the alternatives are, and how you can implement these changes to set your business up for success!

The Trap

There are many opportunities for businesses to reach their customers. What’s more, there seems to be another channel available every other month. More opportunities, more FOMO, more work required to get your message to the people who most need it.

Understandably, many businesses reach a point where they are comfortable with their advertising strategies and wind up doing the same or similar activities month after month, year after year. Either this or overwhelm sets in and it’s simply easier to do the same activity that seems to have worked in the past.

If you don’t have a reminder set, an appointment, or the motivation to pop your head up now and then to see where you are, the trap is getting stuck in the same old same old, forgetting to iterate and improve.

As we alluded to, there are always new opportunities to find new and better ways of reaching your customers. While we don’t recommend following every shiny new object, there’s a lot to be said for refreshing your strategy at least annually to review if it’s still working its hardest for you.

After all, we all want businesses that work hard for us without us overworking ourselves.

Diversify your activities to ensure you’re doing just that.

What’s more, and perhaps most importantly, diversifying your marketing spend ensures you don’t have too much reliance on one particular channel. This can be a liability, because if that channel fell over you may find yourself in a very uncomfortable space – that is, unable to reach your customers so easily.

email marketing and diversifying ad spend woman

The Alternatives

So now that you’re curious about diversifying your advertising spend let’s explore a few options for your marketing dollars.

One of the first recommendations we make is to focus on the advertising that leads to owned assets. When you hold customer data (email addresses, for example) you can use this information to directly reach your customers (as opposed to social media posts or paid search marketing where you rely on algorithms and increasing your spend).

Email marketing

Email newsletters and automations are a form of owned advertising. You are advertising to customers who have directly shown an interest in your product or service (by opting into your program). It also has one of the highest ROIs going around so don’t forget about it, and do dedicate a portion of your advertising budget to it.

Cross Promotions

By partnering with a complementary business or organisation, you can reach new potential customers (and so can your partner). We encourage you to look for ways to partner with businesses in an effort to attract and collect customer contact information for future marketing (such as email marketing!).


While the area of sponsorships can be tricky to navigate (finding the right partner with the right audience at the right price and with the right exposure) it’s worth considering as part of your advertising mix. Once again it’s a way to potentially reach a new audience, and to encourage them to subscribe to your programs.

ad spend evaluation against objectives

How to diversify your ad spend

It’s all well and good to say “diversify your advertising spend” but how can you actually approach it? After all, nobody wants to throw away advertising dollars – you want to be carefully considered.

Review your ad spend periodically

Depending on the needs of your business you might review your ad spend monthly or quarterly. Conducting an audit is a great idea and a useful way to keep track of where your ad spend is going, how it’s performing and whether there are opportunities for growth.

Look at your overall objectives and activities

What do you want your advertising activity to achieve? What activities are you trying to drive people towards? Is there anything new you want to test the waters with?

Looking at your overall objectives and advertising activities will help you identify where to spend more (or less) of your advertising budget. It’s also important to ensure that the channels you are spending money on work together with your other marketing initiatives to achieve your objectives. Review both your objectives and advertising activities periodically and make sure that you allocate ad spend accordingly.

Consider the channels that match those objectives

Depending on your objectives and activities, you might want to consider adding owned assets (such as email marketing) or cross-promotions to your existing mix of paid search, social media and display advertising.

Make sure you’re evaluating them in the right way – if they aren’t meeting your KPIs then question whether they are worth the investment.

Remember, don’t be sucked into throwing more money at your old channel just because you already pay for it – make sure it still makes sense to continue spending on this channel.

Readjust your budget and schedules

Once you’ve looked at your objectives and activities, and considered the channels that match those objectives, it’s time to readjust your budget and schedules to align.

Reflecting on your objectives and the diverse range of channels available to you, ensure that you are being targeted and clever about how you allocate your budget. Review your allocations and readjust as needed to meet your objectives. Sometimes you might want to decrease your ad spend on a certain channel if it’s been underperforming, or split your budget across multiple channels.

So there you have it. The first step is reviewing where you already spend money on advertising with an eye for opportunities. Then take a look at what other channels might be beneficial – but try not to spread yourself too thin! Remember: Don’t rush into anything before considering your objectives, activities and the availability of resources and budget.

If you need help optimising and diversifying your ad spend, get in touch with our team today!