It Pays to Advertise

No matter how wonderful your company’s product or service is, if you don’t advertise, nobody will know about it. The goal of any advertising program should be to cost-effectively reach the largest audience possible and attract new customers. If done correctly, advertising can be a wonderful investment for your small business; if done poorly, advertising can become a huge money sink.

Despite what you see on “Mad Men,” advertising can be a tricky game. We present 10 important tips to help you plan, execute, and monitor your advertising program.

1. Go after Your Target Audience

An advertising campaign should be geared toward your niche market. It is a common mistake to create generic ads that do not speak the language or grab the attention of your potential customers.

Ask yourself what kind of customers you want to attract, and make sure your ads speak to them on a personal level.

2. Highlight Your Competitive Advantage

One of the keys to all advertising is to accentuate the pros of your company — those factors that give you your competitive edge. Too many ads are clever but fail to sell the specific benefits of the featured product or service. Unless you highlight these benefits, your ad delivers no value to potential customers.

3. Establish an ImageSA Flyers

You can recognize the McDonald’s arches while whizzing by on the highway. Likewise, there are plenty of products that you recognize by their packaging or logo.
Image counts when it comes to advertising and promoting your business. Too many advertisers do not work to build a consistent image, and they’re missing the chance to make an impression on prospective customers.

4. You Have to Spend Money to Make Money

There are ways to save money, but advertising is typically not the place to cut corners. Doing so will affect sales, and that affects the bottom line. Successful advertising may cost some money, but that is because it works.

5. Advertise in the Right Places

Your favourite magazine, radio station, or even television program might not be a favourite of your audience. Do some research about your target market to understand who they are and determine what they read, watch, and listen to. Then advertise in the appropriate media to ensure that you reach your target market.

6. Don’t Allow Your Budget to Run Your Advertising Campaign

If you budget £5,000 per month for advertising, you’ve made it very easy from a bookkeeping perspective. However, if like most businesses you have seasonal highs and lows, you are spending too much money advertising during down times and not enough when you want to attract customers. Too many entrepreneurs do not budget according to their seasonal advertising needs.

7. Diversify

It is all too common for business owners to choose the best place to advertise based on price and potential rate of returns, and then stop. As is the case with investing, you do not want to put all of your eggs in one basket. Spread your advertising dollars around by choosing a variety of suitable media for your audience and budget.

8. Don’t Try to Be Everything to Everyone

No product or service will appeal to everyone. Many business owners, including corporate executives, try to come up with ways to reach every market. Typically, this does not work. It can spell disaster for small businesses, who cannot afford to spread themselves too thin. Therefore, find your market and be everything you can be to that audience.

9. Test Your Ads in advance

If you have the time or money to invest in focus groups, you should test your ads on other people. Do they understand and accept the message you are trying to convey? If not, get insight into how you could more effectively communicate your message.

There are other less-expensive ways to test your ads as well — questionnaires, for example.

10. Monitor Your Ads

It is very easy to ask new customers or clients where they heard about you. As simple as this is, many entrepreneurs do not bother to do so. It is advantageous to understand which elements of your ads are most effective and which media offer the most profitable advertising opportunities for your company.

Grow your Business

Start off by searching for “leaflet distribution” – along with the postcode(s) for where you intend to distribute your flyers or leaflets – on any Internet search engine like Google or Bing. Then you can begin to ask the questions that will quickly filter out the best from the rest.

There’s typically three main leaflet/flyer distribution services that will be offered to you:

Door to door

This is the classic way to get a leaflet and flyer into the hands of your customers… via their letterboxes! Research by the Direct Marketing Association shows that 79% of people keep, pass on, read or glance at leaflets and flyers delivered to their door.

Solo, also referred to as Solus or a similar variation on the word, is the ultimate, but also the most expensive, form of door-to-door leaflet distribution. This is because the recipient will only have your leaflet or flyer in their hand when they go to see what’s just been popped through their letterbox.

Perhaps you have a specific requirement for your leaflet distribution by door drop? You may have particular streets and areas in mind. Check to see if the leaflet distribution company will allow you to make the leaflet and flyer distribution unique to your needs, right down to individual streets if you need them to. Do they offer a distribution service that can ignore flats? Or council houses? Or just deliver to council houses only?

If you go for a slightly cheaper Shared door to door plan, your leaflet or flyer will be delivered with other companies’ leaflets and flyers. The distributor will normally assure you that these firms will be of a non-competitive nature only. So, as an example, the new menu for your small, family-run pizza takeaway business shouldn’t be sitting next to a booklet stacked full of buy one, get one free coupon offers from the likes of Pizza Hut or Domino’s. But, like the option below, this shared distribution method will obviously lessen the impact of your leaflet.

There’s also the option to distribute your leaflets or flyers inside any free local newspapers. Again, your marketing message could get lost amongst all this competition.

Hand to hand

Your leaflets and flyers are out on the streets, thrust right into the hands of potential customers! If you’re working with a savvy operator, their friendly distribution staff will ideally give a little sales pitch or answer questions – and hopefully engage with people – when they hand over your leaflet too. Better still, will they be wearing a T-shirt, coat or baseball cap with your brand on them?

Of course, location and timing are all-important here. Target busy shopping centres and high streets at the weekend or lunchtime, hang outside public transport hubs during the commuter rush hours, and make sure your leaflets are going to be handed out at popular shows, festivals, sports events and other special occasions where big numbers of people will be visiting. All these are great places to start. However, the more creative you can be in spreading the word about yourself, the more business you are likely to attract. Why not try to smart guess where lots of people are likely to be impatiently waiting in long queues? This is where your leaflet and flyer could actually eliminate their boredom of queuing up for a few crucial moments.

Remember, anything that gives you an edge will take you a step closer to grabbing your customer’s attention and landing that crucial sale. That’s something every company knows is particularly difficult to achieve in this current economic climate.

 

Business to business

Depending on the products and services you are advertising, this option may make more sense than distributing your leaflet or flyer in residential households. Perhaps you’d like your marketing to hit a specific demographic like business parks, IT companies only or ignore any multi-national organisations?

Cafes, shops, hotels, pubs, takeaways, gyms, book stores, sports centres, doctor’s surgeries, libraries, etc. are all ideal spots to have your flyers and leaflets at hand. They are more likely to be displayed if your business offers a complimentary service. For instance, it makes sense for a gym to display leaflets for a local health food shop – and vice versa.

 

5 Top Tips For Leaflet Advertising

5 Top tips for Leaflet Advertising:

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Leaflet advertising is currently getting more and more popular each day amongst business owners as a way to effectively market their company.

However, not all leaflet campaigns will be a success – particularly if the leaflet itself is not up to a certain standard.

When creating your leaflet, you should consider the following tips:


1)   Start with a ‘hungry’ Headline

The first thing that your potential clients will notice is your headline, with approximately 8 out of 10 reader’s noticing it before anything else.

It is essential that your headline grabs the reader’s attention and entices them to carry on reading.

Headlines that will have a positive impact upon readers should:

  • Focus on something specific to the target audience
  • Increase desire to find out more

In summary, you should take the time to create your perfect headline and try to use key words and phrases to appeal to your specific target audience. It will make the difference between a successful flyer and a flop.

2)   Get it professionally designed

The need for professionalism is increased more than ever when leaflet advertising is the topic in focus.

Your flyer should be attractive and the use of colour is key, but more so it is very important to not overwhelm the flyer with multiple colours which do not complement each other. I’d recommend sticking to a minimal colour scheme, ensuring that the flyer is easy to read and easy on the eye.

Finally, if possible try to use meaningful and relative images. The use of images will help catch the attention of your reader’s but more so allows you to portray your point in a more creative and unique style.

3)   Have a solid structure

As with any form of writing, your text should be structured and well presented, with the layout also being very fundamental.

You should write what you offer at the start of the flyer in a concise matter – essentially a summary of the main points so the reader instantly knows whether or not your services will be of any relevance to them.

The main body of the text is your area to expand your writing, perhaps go slightly further into depth about what message your flyer is trying to convey. However, remember not to write too much – you don’t want to lose the reader’s attention!

Finally, towards the bottom of the flyer you should have contact details for the reader to get in touch with you. A telephone number, email address, website URL and business address are usually the most common and convenient methods of contact.

4) Provide an incentive

Although not an essential, it is statistically proven that a flyer gets a more successful response rate when an incentive is provided.

Incentives include:

  • Discount coupon – 10% 0ff, £10 off etc…
  • Buy One Get One Free

Not everybody will use an incentive on their flyer, generally making your flyer more unique and increasing the chances of receiving a better response!

5)   Print ‘Proper’

I previously emphasised the need for a professional design, but the need for a high quality print is equally as important.

What would you prefer? Your professional design on a piece of standard paper, or printed onto luxury paper, further enhancing the vibrancy of your colour scheme and images?

I’m hoping you picked the latter!

To summarise, I’d recommend taking time to analyse your options for print and going with a well trusted and established print firm to ensure the best quality is delivered for you and your brand.


Keep these tips in mind and you’re 5 steps closer to creating a leaflet which is right for you!


Trainee Accounts Manager
Neil Challenger