I will push you off a cliff
Never confuse marketing with advertising.
You are standing on the edge of a cliff. If you go straight out and soar, the view and experience will be breathtaking.
If you plummet straight down, you die. Advertising is the thing that runs up behind you and pushes you off. Marketing is the thing that makes sure your hang glider is strapped to your back. Either way, you’re going off that cliff.
Marketing is all the stuff. Is your place clean, is your receptionist personable, do you do what you say you will do, are you easy to do business with, do your sales people know what they are talking about, do you have a professional sign or a cheap vinyl banner, are your bathrooms riddled with disease, etc.
Advertising is the thing that brings the customer to you for the whole marketing experience. Advertising is about one-fifth of your marketing. If there is a mismatch between what your ad promised me, and the experience that I have with your business, then the hang glider isn’t attached and you swan dive to your death.
The question you must ask is not whether you “need to advertise.” Instead, may I suggest you ask the question “am I ready to advertise?”
If someone is claiming they are giving you marketing advice and it just involves a slick ad, run the other way. Find someone you can trust to tell you the truth and help you organize every cog in the marketing machine.