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AdlandPro World's Classifieds

Business Advertising
(Part 2)

Advertising is a major part of running a successful business.

There are many ways to advertise your business; which ones to use will depend on your target audience and your budget. Here are the major categories of advertising options. This list doesn't include every possible method of advertising, so let your imagination have a go!

Print Advertising

Newspapers

A series of smaller ads may have more impact than one or two large ads>
Become friends with your rep - Newspaper sales reps can be useful for information - gain extra information about features, specials and promotions.
Most papers charge for inch rate, where you multiply the columns by the height of the ad in inches. E.g. 2 columns wide X 3 inches down would be a 6 inch ad.
 
For a comprehensive list of Australian newspapers click here

Newsletters
These can be done on paper or via email (as ezine) and are effectively small newspapers on a specific topic. Newsletters can themselves be advertising if you make one yourself or you can pay for ads and editorials in other newsletters.

Flyers
Simple advertising papers, flyers are useful for attracting attention and giving basic information quickly to large numbers of people. Flyers are usually smaller than an A4 page and may be printed on one or two sides.

Catalogues
These are detailed product information booklets. Usually, there will be pictures of the products along with a description and maybe the price. Catalogues are a good way of showing your stock to people and gaining their interest.

Brochures
Usually give a detailed overview of the business or service. Many brochures are a folded piece of A4 paper printed on both sides. Brochures are useful tools for listing products or services for existing and qualified prospective customers, rather than for general advertising purposes (although they can work this way, too.)

Signs
Highly visual, signs are great for branding and pinpointing a location. Be creative signs can be as big as billboards or as small as a sticker on your car.

Business Cards
Business cards are one of the most effective and inexpensive ways to promote your business. They are an initial contact for your business and thus are important in conveying your image and message.
Read more about business cards...


Stationery

For some templates for your business stationery try these templates for starters.

Phone Book and Yellow pages directories
Listings in these directories are highly effective for some businesses, but being in them always makes it easy for customers to find you if they forget your number. Standard listings are free, bold and large ads can be costly.

Media Releases

The media is always looking for interesting stories to release and media releases are the best way to tell the media about what you are doing. An appropriate release may result in media coverage of the business or event which is very effective advertising for you.

Media releases need to be timed correctly as well as being newsworthy and presented effectively. Unless you have experience, using a professional writer or publicist is worth considering.

Personalised gifts and tokens

Pens, Stubby holders, Business card holders, coasters and other items can be made with your business name and logo attached. These can be given to customers and prospective customers as a bonus that will remind them of your business for some time. How generously you distribute them depends on your budget and how much each item cost.


Advertising Online

Create a web site
A web site can provide a different medium of advertising for your business. Often, it is easier to direct potential clients to a web site for information, rather than mailing information or relaying the information over the phone.

Be clear on the intended objective of the web site.

Indirect Advertising supports other advertising in place and offers further information on a product or service on the web site.

Examples of components of a web site based on indirect advertising include;
handy hints, extra resources, related information, online support, background information, company overview, staff profiles, product outlines and technical specifications, answers to common questions and more!

An example being a television commercial promoting a competition that can be entered online
    > main advertising medium was television - aim was to send people to the web site for competition details
 
Direct Advertising is where the advertising is created with the intention of producing sales or getting as close to a sale as possible.

Examples of components of a web site based on direct advertising include;

   > Online ordering, request a catalogue online, product images online, ability to order a product or service and make payments online, range of products consists of typical online sellers, range of services are those that can be offered virtually,

Knowing how a website will work for your business is something worth taking time to consider before jumping into the online business world.

You need to know that your product is something people buy online.
Know your market
Your website should suit the intended market

Forums


Try some online business forums (message boards) to promote your business.

E-mail lists
Collecting business contacts and informing them via e-mail is legal. You must have their permission to send them information by e-mail, and often a subscription service is the best way to grow your email list and expand the pool of people who will read your news.

Spam/Viral E-mails

Spamming is sending unsolicited e-mail, either in bulk quantities or to numerous people who have not requested the information.

Spamming results is considered dangerous as laws are being formed to rid the world of the spammers!

Make every e-mail you send personal. Use the person's name if you have it. If you want to e-mail someone to introduce your service - find out their name and contact them directly. Sending an e-mail to every possible contact from a company is considered spamming.

Most will suggest you avoid the offers to buy a list of subscribers -  this is considered dangerous and is not condoned as good business practice.

You can encourage people to send on your e-mail to a friend if they believe the content is of interest -- some even invite their email subscribers to add their own personal message before forwarding - this is a nicer alternative to simply hitting the 'forward' button.

Banner Ads

Almost every website has a banner ad promoting a related service or product. Why not get your business seen on other sites with banner advertising?

Exchanging Links or Banners
An effective and cheap means of getting more exposure for your business AND providing more information for you site visitors. Simply find a suitable business and place a link or banner to their site on your site and they do the same for you.

Adware (pop-up advertisements)
These ads are eye-catching as they pop up in front of the page someone is looking at. They can have different triggers and may pop up immediately or later. Note that many people dislike pop-ups and have them blocked on their computer.

Listing in directories and search engines
Paying for search engine listings is one of the most aggressive forms of online advertising. It can be expensive - but the rewards do pay off.

You can list your web site for free on many search engines. There is also software available to submit your site to many search engines at once.

Add this page to your favourites
If you manage to get a visitors to your web site, you want them to return? Right? The answer is a button or link offering them the opportunity to add it to their list of favourite websites.

Find out more about the code needed here... http://htmlgoodies.earthweb.com/beyond/homepage.html

Refer this web site to a friend
Offer your viewers the chance to e-mail the web site details to a friend. You can also include a message in your newsletters and e-mails inviting anyone to pass on the web site address.

Graphics
Simply, they must be fast downloading, cater to your intended audience and compliment your web site design and other business identity images. Keeping a consistent style improves the chances your business image will be remembered.

Television/Radio Advertising

Broadcast forms of advertising include radio and television.  

Advertisements/Commercials
This is video and audio footage that promotes your business or product to the viewers. It needs to be professional and interesting to have any impact, and an unexpected or humorous touch is useful. Ads on TV are expensive to make and have them aired, but they reach a large audience at once and the repetition enhances the result. By selecting which shows the ad is placed beside, you can target the audience to a certain extent to maximize the return of investment.

Program Sponsorship
Remember the line "This program is brought to you by....." and up pops an image of a flashy new car or a new packet of potato chips? Program sponsorship is big business - especially for soap shows that air every night at the same time...resulting in a repetitive message being seen.

Product Placements in Programs

Sometimes on TV or in a movie, you will see a character drink a branded drink, drive a particular car or walk past a sign of a real company. These views of the product or brand name and called product placements and can be seen by a large number of people at once. Being included in a show they like gives an un spoken endorsement to the consumer, so it is very effective advertising. 

Other ways to promote your business include:
Radio Advertising
Commercials
Sponsorship of program segments
Giveaways with the radio station
Donating competition prizes
Talk back radio