(Good stuff that actually works and will bring you more business)
An accumulation of tips from prior reports:
TIP #1: Placing an advertisement in the newspaper or a magazine? Take a minute to page through and study the advertisments that others are using. Now how can you make your ad stand out??? When people are reading a magazine or newspaper you have only seconds for them to notice your ad. If there are heavy borders around all the ads you see, make your ad without borders. Is everything in color? Make yours black and white. If everything is in black and white run a color ad. Perhaps try running the ad upside-down!! MAKE YOUR AD STAND OUT FROM THE REST SO IT WILL BE NOTICED!
TIP #2 Another advertisement trick that is seldom used: Cartoons are much more apt to be read than advertisements. Try making your ad in the form of a cartoon! Cartoon ads work much better than regular ads. Also your magazine or newspaper editor will thank you because good cartoon ads make a publication more fun to read and help him sell his publication.
TIP#3: Word of mouth advertising is the best! Strive to get REPEAT business. It is very expensive to bring those first time customers into your place of business. Smile and be friendly to your customers even if they don’t buy anything. They may come back and bring their friends. Make it a goal to delight your customers. Don’t underestimate the power of a smile. Besides, it helps the whole community when you demonstrate to visitors what southern hospitality is all about!
TIP #4: Marketing is not a battle of products or services. It is a battle of perceptions. The only thing that counts is how you are perceived in the minds of the customers. Consider the interesting story of a mustard company that was trying to sell their product. Just mustard! They created an illusion, the perception that their mustard was the absolute best. That it was sought after by the wealthy, the connoisseur of excellent food! Pardon me sir, but would you have any Grey Poupon? But of course! And the company raised their price above the competition and customers flocked to buy it! How do you want to be perceived in the minds of your customers? For more on this, be sure to read The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing by Al Ries and Jack Trout. Available on line at Amazon.com.
Tip #5: The Law of Leadership. It is always better to be FIRST than be better. If you cannot be first, create a new category where your product can be first. Grey Poupon mustard was not first, but they created a whole new category of mustard. One for the ultimate connoisseur. And they became the leader in that category. Try to seize the top leadership spot in some category. On the sign in my office yard it says SKC is the world leader in air sampling. We started out our company in the basement of the house where I grew up. We were nobody. We created the image and worked toward it. Perhaps you have never heard of SKC but nearly every environmental health professional knows us and today we really are the world leader. Market an image and mold yourself into it. Make it happen. Taken from The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing.
Tip #6: Do you own a restaurant? Check out the wonderful tips by the Restaurant Doctor! Click here to go to his web site.
Tip #7: The principle of Force - Might is right - God smiles on the larger sales force. If you are the leader, that is great and you have an advantage. However if you are competing with a larger store you must advertise with care. Try to find some weakness in the leader's position and concentrate your advertising on an area where the leader is weak. Never go head to head against the leader's strength because you will lose the battle. Remember the principle of force. Perhaps the leader has slipped in the area of customer service. If so, advertise that service is king in your store. Can't find a sales clerk to wait on you? Come to our store - we believe in service! For more on this read Marketing Warfare by Al Ries and Jack Trout. Available on line at Amazon.com.
Tip #8: Do you advertise in newspapers and magazines? If so, consider this rule: it is much more effective to run a series of smaller ads over an extended period of time, than to run a couple of large ads. Advertising over an extended period of time qualifies you for discounts plus increases the odds of your ad being seen.
Tip #9: Try to get news content in the magazine or newspaper where you advertise. News content is more than 100 times as likely to be seen as your advertisment. Editors are always looking for good news stories, so if you can write a news story for them about a funny thing that happened in your store, a store expansion, or something exceptional you offer for sale, you will get more customers!
Tip #10: Do you have a web site? Since a web site is the least expensive way to get information to potential customers many businesses now have one. However, many business owners forget to include their web address in their advertisements! Put that web address in all of your ads, on operating instructions, on give-aways - put it everywhere! Just for fun look in the local yellow pages and see how many advertisers include their web address. It's not many! The purpose of your advertising is to get people into your business. If the ad does not provide enough information, at least get them to go to your web site where you have lots of good stuff for them to see.
TIP # 11: Take advantage of free listings!!! Due to popular demand I have added a BUSINESS DIRECTORY area to this web site which gives chamber members a free listing including a link to your web site. Be sure to review your listing. If no web link is there please contact me with your web address and I’ll put it up. You must be a member of the Appomattox Chamber of Commerce to get this free listing. Lots of people use this web site and it will pay you to be included in the BUSINESS DIRECTORY!