If you operate a business using mailing lists, consumer mailing lists, opportunity seeker mailing lists or MLM mailing lists to target Opportunity Seekers, Business Opportunity Seekers, MLM Opportunity Seekers and Home Based Business Opportunity Seekers, you can benefit from reading this article.
EFFECTIVE ADVERTISING TOOLS FOR SMALL BUSINESSES
The number of advertising pages in magazines and newspapers rises and falls with the economy. But even at times when the economy is somewhat soft, notice that your local newspaper is still filled with inserts. That's because many companies have discovered the value of Newspaper Inserts: Effective Advertising Tools For Small Businesses Small businesses have a difficult time promoting themselves.
This happens for a number of reasons:
In most communities, many companies sell essentially the same product or service, usually at a similar price. How many tile stores will you find in any town? How many children's clothing shops? This makes it confusing for potential buyers. Which one to select? Why? It's really hard to say.
Small businesses have fewer dollars to invest in advertising activities. Extensive advertising, public relations or other promotional activities are too costly, so advertising dollars are saved for special events and sales.
Small business owners and managers work long hours, which leaves them little time for attending meetings of local business groups or other networking activities.
So, what can a small business owner do to stand out? Here's one man's approach:
Introducing An In-Home Shopping Service
Bill Williams wanted to introduce an in-home shopping service as a way to reach out to people who might want new blinds and window treatments but were too busy to shop. If he could make it easy for them to visualize new window treatments in their homes, and if they could have new blinds or drapes with minimal effort, he might get more purchases. In addition, he could charge more for the in-home service. However, people are suspicious of in-home services, especially those offered by businesses with unfamiliar names. How do they tell the legitimate ones from the scams? How can they be assured of the workmanship quality? Further, people are tired of being bothered by solicitations during the few free hours they have at home. Many will hang up on telemarketers (or worse); they won't talk to people who come unannounced to their doors.
To introduce this service, Bill needed to come up with a way to:
Stand out from other businesses offering a similar service.
Build a sense of comfort about his business in the minds of potential customers.
Stay within a reasonable budget.
The answer for First Blinds & Window Treatments was a newspaper insert. This is a sheet of 8 ½ by 11 green paper inserted into the local newspaper; the kind of sheet that falls out when potential buyers start looking at the newspaper (forcing them to at least look at the message). To stand out further, the message was hand-written and signed by Bill (other inserts may not have this personal touch). The message read: Are you sick and tired of nonsense? My name is Bill Williams, and I own a no-nonsense company called First Blinds & Window Treatments. We have been in business for 24 years at the same location. We have 7,500 former clients who are willing to act as references for the quality of our service. Many are your neighbors. We offer free in-home estimates. Our prices are guaranteed to be the lowest.For a free no-obligation estimate or literature by mail, call 555-4444. If you only want information by phone or mail, PLEASE TELL US. We won't call or solicit you in any way. We will be here when you're ready. When you call, you will know that you have found a nice, professional company. You will feel very comfortable dealing with us.Bill Williams
Why This Message Is Effective
Take a close look at the message and you'll see why it works.The message starts with an intriguing question that hits head-on people's suspicions about dealing with unknown small businesses: noted for being a source of "nonsense."It quickly identifies First Blinds & Window Treatments as having a desirable characteristic: "a no-nonsense company."
Next, the message lists some distinguishing features of the company: 24 years in business, same location, 7,500 references, used by your neighbors. First Blinds & Window Treatments deserves to stand out from the crowd.
If the readers have gotten this far, they probably have some degree of interest, so the next step is to define the offer - free estimates, low prices.
Next comes the best part - building the comfort:
1. Prospects are encouraged to call for information only, letting them take a very small starting step right now.
2. Prospects don't have to worry about unwelcome follow-up contacts from the company, thus reducing the fear of being bothered.
3. Prospects can be assured the company will be there to serve them when they are ready; this is a legitimate supplier of window treatments that will be there tomorrow.
How A Newspaper Insert Can Work For You
If you are looking for a way to promote your company, and your prospects are within your community, think about trying a newspaper insert. Here are some guidelines to make yours most effective in getting your message across:
Find out if your local newspaper offers insert advertising.
Check the types of companies that are now using this service.
Take a look at the design of inserts other companies are using and find a format that will make yours look different (don't just re-produce your newspaper ad on a different type of paper).
Pick a colored paper so your promotion will stand out.
Find an issue prospects are thinking about, and start your promotion from their point of view.
List a few clear points on why prospects should buy from your company.
Make prospects feel comfortable with your company.
Encourage them to take some minimal action right now to get started
Consider implementing these tips if you operate a business using mailing lists, consumer mailing lists, opportunity seeker mailing lists or MLM mailing lists to target Opportunity Seekers, Business Opportunity Seekers, MLM Opportunity Seekers and Home Based Business Opportunity Seekers and want to make more money than you are currently making.
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