As a SMB owner, once you’ve decided you want to advertise the challenge is making a choice about which type of advertising is best for your business. From online adverting to print ads, flyers, banner ads, radio and TV spots, the amount of selection seems endless.
We all know that to gain customers for your product or service you’ll have to invest in some advertising. One of the most important things for a product/company is to be seen and recognized by its target audience. Advertising is the main avenue marketers use to attract customers to your specific brand, but it can also be the most expensive, so choosing the right type of advertising will be key to your success.
Here are a few tips to I’d like you to consider before investing in your advertising this year.
- As advertising can be costly, consult your marketing strategy to align your advertising goals with your overall marketing strategy.
- Consider your audience before choosing the type of advertising. E.g. if you are a tattoo service targeting a younger audience, then an ad in the newspaper (which older people are more likely to read) would not be a good investment of your advertising dollars.
- Keep the goal in mind. In consultation with your strategy, be clear on what you want to achieve with this advertising. Some may advertise to increase brand recognition or to actually drive sales. Be as specific as possible about what you hope to achieve through advertising. E.g. increase sales by 10% in product “x”.
- Timing. Decide the frequency and duration. Advertising is won and lost based on how many times it is seen or heard by your audience, so think about how often you will run an ad and, if it’s a radio ad, how long will the spot be.
- Use a mix of different methods. Unless you know your audience is using a certain type of media 100% of the time, versification is also important. Think of a radio ad you may have heard and then read that ad in the newspaper or trade publication, and then possibly seen the exact same ad in a local bus shelter. Increasing your audience’s exposure to your brand directly correlates to their buying decisions.
- Make sure you have measurement in place to track your advertising. You’ll need to track it so you can determine what the ROI is and if it met your goals.
If you want to grow your customer base you have to advertise, but before you spend one dime, be sure you choose advertising that helps you to effectively reach your target market and attract new customers.
Have you considered advertising your company? Have you included advertising in your marketing strategy? What kind of success have you had with your advertising? I look forward to hearing from you in the comments below.
This is all very true. Working with SMB’s in Iowa, we find it is very important to diversify your advertising. Instead of trying to make a sale through an ad, we have found success in simply trying to make a contact through an ad. This can be done through offering free reports, free services, or resources (videos, blogs, etc) in exchange for a customer’s email address. This lets you start a conversation with the customer and build a relationship, instead of trying to make a sale through a 15-second ad.
Thanks for your comment Thomas. Sounds like you’re on the right track in Iowa! Just wondering if you are finding this approach has a good conversion rate or are you just interested in getting email addresses for manual follow-up?