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Business Advertising Primer

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Business advertising

Online business advertising displays your promotional material on various Internet web sites. The message is accurate since you control the entire production process. If any errors are made, they can usually be corrected quickly. Because you have distribution control, you can virtually guarantee that only your targeted customers will see your ads. For example, if your main market is a ten mile radius of your business location, you can specify this region in your ad delivery strategy. When your main market is further refined, to a single neighborhood, for example, you can deliver your ads only there.

Small businesses can now advertise just as effectively as medium and large ones. Restaurants, jewelry shops, car dealers, repair shops, and professionals such as doctors and lawyers, can all benefit from local, targeted advertising online.

Local business advertising campaigns can be successful when several elements are combined in proper proportions. These are a balance between the advertising message, the target audience, and the actual advertising materials.

Advertising Message

There are many forms that business advertising can use, both online and offline. Offline materials tend to be visually appealing such as signs, flags, or banners. These can be produced at local sign shops. Online ad materials are visual as well, but with more choices. There can be email messages, web page banners, sidebar ads, and overlays. The online content can include text, images, and/or video.

Target Audience

Businesses need to target those people who can reasonably be expected to become customers. This has always been true of offline advertising. For example, there is little point putting up a banner for a local pizza restaurant in an unpopulated area of the city, or in an area outside the delivery area. Similarly, there is no point in advertising online to the wrong delivery channel. For example, a bakery will no get many customers by advertising sweets on a diet web page. Instead, the business needs to evaluate their target audience and direct advertising materials to them. Just like placing a business flag in the right part of town, an online ad can be shown to only those most likely to become customers.

Advertising Materials

The actual material used, the ad copy, is vital for successful advertising campaigns. Ideally, this should be an offer to potential customers that they cannot refuse. For many years, the notion of free items, or deep discounts, has been successful when luring customers. Whether offline, or online, this form of advertising copy has always worked.

Unfortunately, people have become quite jaded and they may not respond as well to "50% offers" as they did previously. Crafting an offer that is unusual is often more successful. That is why so many businesses have advertised "Buy One, Get One Free", or "Two For One", instead of simple 50% off messages.

The final component of successful advertising is the traffic, or ad viewers. There are many ways to get traffic to your advertising offers but some work faster, or more effectively, than others. Proper planning of your campaign is important. This does not have to be expensive. Simple delivery of flyers door to door can be done. As well, online ads can be delivered to everyone in a geographical area at relatively low cost.

Both offline and online advertising materials must market business products, services, and locations, as well as the capabilities of the staff. A popular offline trend is the business advertising flag. These display an attractive logo and a short, relevant message. The online equivalent is a banner that is shown at the top of a web page. Both of these approaches are very popular with business owners because they have been proven to produce customer leads.

The success of your advertising campaigns relies on factors such as the distribution methods you use, your overall budget, your campaign objective, the target market, and the impact of your advertising copy. These factors must be closely studied when researching whether campaigns are successful. You must have an expectation of the response of customers to each of your campaigns. This must be a study of what your target consumers are looking for.

Companies should realize that business to business advertising, (or B2B), is also valuable as well. You may sell products to another company who uses them to produce a product that they market.  When you are exploring the B2B market, you may want to closely examine the marketing factors. In many cases, it is not enough simply to show other businesses what products you have. Instead, it may be more about establishing a line of contact between your business and theirs. Getting them to respond by contacting your sales staff may be an important outcome for B2B advertising campaigns.

Home Businesses

Home businesses can benefit from marketing as well. While these will not usually set up offline marketing, they can be well represented with online campaigns. There are many millions of Internet web sites, and physical businesses, that compete for your customers' attention. If, however, you have a unique product or service to offer, you can capitalize as a home based business. You just need to get exposure to your target market, those who would buy your product or service.

As with traditional businesses, the home based operation needs to balance the marketing factors. One extra consideration will be the image of capability which you need to express. This can be done through reliability claims and testimonials, and guarantees. These are perfect additions to online advertising copy. Since more and more people today ignore the traditional search methods such as telephone books, your home based business can be as promenent as any in the quest for new customers.

Free Online Business Advertising

Your own business web site is perhaps the best free advertising channel. You can control the message and include any type of content that you want. If you set up a WordPress content management system, (highly recommended), you will find that the process of Internet web site management is much like setting up a word processing document.

There still exists many free advertising web channels. Various online classified ad sites allow free insertions. Check the site terms and make sure that your posts comply. This usually involves identifying your post as commercial in nature. These posts can link back to your web site, your primary advertising vehicle. In time, as results become postive, you can explore the possibility of boosting the classified ads with small amounts of advertising funds.

Advertising Variety

Another factor that is important for successful campaigns is simple variety. The message should be available to potential customers through as many channels as possible. Studies show that customers respond to frequency in many cases. When your business is shown via web page banners and on page ad blocks, all leading to your web site, customers will notice. They will be more likely to respond to one of the offers as they recognize your brand. Unfortunately, this fact may tend to cloud the analysis of campaigns. With more channels, it becomes more difficult to determine exactly which ad resulted in a business sale. It becomes important to survey new customers, although they may not even realize which ad channel was the trigger either.

The business community has taken a financial beating of late. This is true of the advertising market as well. Most all marketing agencies have cut costs, just as their clients have. They have given more control to advertisers which can benefit you. With proper attention to your campaigns, you can have cost effective advertising, with more analysis tools than ever. Better deals will result as you correctly monitor your return on advertising budgets.



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