Thursday, March 22, 2012

Print Advertising For Small Business .... Is It Worth It?

If you are considering advertising in the newspaper or other publications, first you need to determine if your target market is actually reading the publication. Newspaper advertising is for companies looking to reach large audiences across numerous demographic groups.

Second, ask yourself if you will be able to profit from the ad if only 5% of the readers respond to it and purchase from you. A $2,000.00 ad should at least make you a profit of $2001.00 or else it is a costly choice.

Finally, make sure that the advertising you choose is right for you and your potential customers. Many advertising sales people will gladly sell you what they think you need, but only you truly know your customer.

I would definitely choose web-based advertising over print, but that will usually be just as expensive if it does not work. So, choose something that your customers will respond to positively and in large numbers.

My opinion, for what it is worth, is about control.

Print advertising, is fixed, and cannot be adapted. Whether a potential client looks at the advert or not is almost entirely down to good layout and positioning message, plus large amounts of luck.

Say a client does take a look. Are they motivated to find your website, or pick up the phone? What contact details do you get? Will you ever know that your advert was read? The answer to most of this is NO!

You can only take control of a discussion, once a dialogue has been initiated by the client. This means that you are not master of your own destiny. My preference would be to explore some of the many online options that are likely to get you some kind of feedback, if not any more sales. Statistics on the attention your advert got, if nothing else, will allow you to position your next ad in a different way, that may this time hit the mark.

The trouble with print advertising is that it is expensive and guarantees nothing. This is generally not yet recognised in the pricing.

Never underestimate the power of referral. As an established business, you are likely to already have a database of past clients and potential clients that could be leveraged through a direct marketing campaign. This may be more fruitful than any of the above.