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A. Every business has competition. So, even if you're the "only game in town," you're probably competing with direct mail, catalogs and Internet shopping. If your competition is reaching your potential customers and you aren't, you'll lose sales. What's more, studies show that nearly 50 percent of Americans move every five years. Through advertising, you increase the likelihood of replacing customers lost due to attrition. Plus, people need to be reminded of your business, or they are likely to go to someone who is advertising.
A. It often takes more than just one ad to create awareness or generate results. Just as you wouldn't expect to go to a weight loss clinic for one week and lost 20 pounds, you shouldn't expect a single ad to perform similar overnight miracles. It takes time to develop awareness. Keep in mind that you can increase response many ways, from increasing the frequency of the message to trying different and more exciting offers.
A. When you consider a newspaper's reach and demographics, it is actually one of the most cost-effective methods of advertising available. What's more, since one of the secrets of successful advertising is consistency, not size, frequency can earn you lower rates, even as it increases the effectiveness of your advertising. A cost-per-thousand readers' analysis often shows that advertising in newspapers is cheaper than advertising on radio or television. Reduced to the cost per reader, rates are low. Even so, if advertising in your local newspaper is still more than you can afford, consider co-op advertising where your supplier shares the cost of advertising where your supplier shares the cost of advertising with you. Co-op can double your ad's pull and reduce the cost by up to 50 percent.
A. Advertising helps presell your customers, so that it actually takes less time to close an individual sale. In the long run, advertising saves you time you can put to use on other jobs. Since the public is "conditioned" to believe what they read more than just what a salesperson says, newspaper advertising offers you more credibility than a salesperson can alone.
A. Selection is what drives consumers. Just as there are many stores downtown and in the malls, these remain the most popular shopping venues. The same is true about advertising. Shoppers look to the newspaper for advertising more than any other medium because there is selection. There are many ads in the newspaper simply because newspaper advertising works! In fact, it is so effective and cost-efficient that more advertising money is spent on newspaper advertising each year than any other medium.
A. Keep in mind that you are investing money rather than spending it. For example, if $50 invested on advertising produces $5,000 in added business, you've just created additional revenue with a relatively small investment. It simply boils down to one question-do you look at advertising to be a wise investment. Like exercise, if you start out with a sensible program and stick with it, you'll eventually be able to accomplish things you once thought impossible.
A. Look at co-op advertising to stretch your advertising investment. Co-op advertising allows you to increase the size or frequency of your ad without increasing your advertising investment. If a newspaper has a co-op department, someone can sit down with you and explore potential co-op advertising programs. There is no charge for this service.
A. The newspaper reaches many different markets, and the different sections of the newspaper reach different markets. For instance, the business section reaches a different audience from the entertainment section, and the sports section reaches a market that would be completely different from the women's section. All you need to do is place your ad in the right section of the newspaper to reach your market. Perhaps one of these sections would be right for you. There are many kinds of ads in the newspaper proving that many different types of people read the newspaper and will respond to your ad. No other medium has this power.
A. Many people who do not live in the vicinity of your store drive past it every day (to or from work or just visiting, for example). People are willing to drive to get what they want. Your costs will still be extremely economical, even though the paper has a circulation that extends beyond your particular are
A. Competition is too fierce to rely on the off-chance that customers will drive by and see your signage. Statistics show not only the value-but also the urgency-of advertising when you're new. Over 65 percent of new businesses go out of business within the first year. It is critical to give your new business every advantage by letting people know who you are and what you have to offer them.
A. While trips to the mall are up compared to 10 years ago, the number of stores visited per trip is down. Additionally, the amount of time spent in each store and the overall time spent in the mall each trip are both trending down. Therefore, newspapers remain the best way to get shoppers into your store. When people are pressed for time, they rely on newspapers to find the products they want and the best prices. Then, when they enter the store, they are ready to buy.
A. You can advertise the brand names of the merchandise you handle and cash in on the manufacturers' national advertising in all media. Stress reasons, other than price, why customers like your store-it may be credit, service or the friendly atmosphere. Newspaper advertising helps upgrade the impression of your store. It lets you promote the quality and value of your merchandise.
A. It's true that there are many ads in the newspaper, but you do not have to run a large ad to get your message to the public. If you placed just a tiny ad offering a free Mercedes, I'm sure you would get a great deal of traffic and calls from that. Even if your ad is small, it makes a great offer, it will generate traffic. Remember, a small ad that runs every week and emphasizes benefits or unique services will generate a great response. The majority of newspaper advertisers are the smaller advertisers who run consistently every week with these crucial elements in their ad: a benefit headline, an appealing offer and a call to action.
A. Newspapers collect market research on who reads which section. Just ask your classified or retail ad rep which section will reach your target audience.
A. One of the worst things you could do is run up a big advertising bill that you may not be able to pay off. Take a closer look at your particular business. Every business has peaks and valleys. The theory of advertising is to run a little above your valleys and a little below your peaks. If this is a "valley time" for you, then turning to advertising may be the best thing you can do.
A. You must realize that you're not purchasing results, but advertising space. If you use that space wisely, people will see your ad-and there are readership studies to prove this. And people will respond to your ad just as they are responding to the thousands of other advertisements in the newspaper every week.
A. Research shows that advertising does work. What doesn't work is not having a marketing strategy. So before you start writing and designing a single ad or a campaign, take the time to develop a marketing strategy. It will help you position your business and determine why your product or services are unique.