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3 Tips to Reduce your Advertising Costs
Advertising costs are a bitter pill to swallow for many small businesses. Many businesses rely on advertising to keep customer traffic up, but the cost of a continuous advertising presence can be overwhelming for some small business owners especially in today’s sluggish economy. Here are 3 tips to help you reduce your advertising costs while maintaining your advertising effectiveness.
Piggyback: Do you regularly send out flyers or mailers to the local market? Why not share that cost with another small business. If you normally buy the back page of the weekly community newspaper, why not split that page with another reputable retailer? Piggybacking your ad on another ad, or allowing another retailer to piggyback on your ad essentially cuts your cost in half. While it may also reduce your ad response somewhat, it is an excellent method of maintaining a continuous advertising presence and saving money. The key is to piggyback with a reputable partner. If you reduce the size of your ad you put the control over who gets the other half in the hands of the newspaper or magazine. Instead, buy the ad yourself and work out a deal with a pre-selected small business in your area to ensure that your shared ad is not shared with a competitor, or a company that you would prefer not to be associated with.
Reduce your Frequency: Advertising is usually measured in two ways: Reach and Frequency. Reach is the number of people that actually see your ad, and Frequency is the estimated number of times that those people see your ad. So a low reach, high frequency campaign will result in your message being heard often by a fairly small group of potential customers.
If you have to sacrifice one of these, it should be frequency. Your 12-week radio campaign can become a 10 week campaign. Or instead of 6 spots per day you can reduce it to 5. Reach should be left untouched, simply because you selected a particular group of customers for one reason: you think they might buy your product or service. So don’t cut them out of the equation. Instead, hit them less often with your marketing message.
Look to PR: Advertising is expensive. PR (Public Relations) is essentially free. If you can gain some exposure through your local media outlets, you can be sure that it will generate a better response for your small business than your typical ad campaign. One article about your business in a local newspaper or an appearance on a local TV show is better than advertising because of the credibility it brings to your business. You could easily drop a few ads from your campaign if you land some publicity for your business. By keeping your local media informed of your business activities, including things like major sales, expansions, or trends in your business that customers would find interesting, you may open the doors to free publicity and save advertising dollars along with it.
By piggybacking your ads with those of other companies, slightly reducing your frequency, and seeking PR opportunities for your business, you will be able to reduce your advertising costs without greatly affecting your advertising response rates.
Will Dylan is the Author of “Small Business Big Marketing” a powerful e-book for small businesses available through his website www.marketingyoursmallbusiness.com . Will also offers article and news release writing services.