If you are a small business owner, the first thing you think of with advertising are those hard sell salespeople who call you all the time to try to sell you their advertising.
They are filled with empty promises, and most of them will ignore you completely after you’ve signed the contract.
I don’t have to tell you, advertising is expensive. There are hundreds of thousands of different ways to advertise, and every advertiser wants you to spend your entire advertising budget on them. Here are some basic tips to help you make smarter advertising decisions for your small business.
6-8 touches is a common marketing term, and it means that a client, on average, will need to see your advertisement about 6-8 times before they start to absorb it. This is an advertiser’s dream statistic. They will all mention how you need to advertise with them for at least 6-8 months for your ad to be effective.
What they don’t tell you, is that while your ad is running for the first 6-8 months you are not likely to get many calls.
Coupons are not a very good way to advertise. They are the most effective way to get the phone to ring, but that is not the object of being in business. The object of business is to build a solid customer base, who you provide exceptional service to and that they reward you with their loyalty for your hard work.
Coupon customers are a different breed. They love saving money, they love visiting different places, and they take the wheel when dealing with your business.
That means they will tell you how much they will pay, they tell you what you will do for free, etc. They are usually much more demanding than other customers, and the revenue you receive from them is usually drastically reduced.
Now, not all coupon customers are bad. I’ve used a few coupons myself. My favorite restaurants seem to offer very modest coupons, maybe $3 off a meal. This type of coupon will not prompt me to go to a restaurant, but it will remind me that I love that place and I should go again.
If you are going to do coupons, don’t give away the farm to get people to call. Just offer a friendly discount that reminds people who you are, and that you want their business.
Call the Businesses Who Already Use That Advertising
I know it is awkward to call other businesses and ask how their advertising is going, but it doesn’t take much time and could save you thousands of dollars. Call at least three companies who advertise with an advertiser you are thinking of using.
I was going to do a mailer advertiser, and I called 5 people who were advertising with them. 3 people never picked up their phones, 1 person said they didn’t like the advertising company, and 1 thought I was the advertising company calling (I think because I said their name) and he said he wasn’t interested and hung up.
As a small business person you cannot afford to be shy. I know, calling other companies is not why you got in business, but if you are considering new advertising you MUST do this.
Advertising is a big decision. Make sure to do your research, and you will greatly increase your chances for success.
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