Press Advertising in the press and in some directories can be an affordable and effective marketing tool for small businesses. Advertising offers a targeted way of spreading the word about your business to large numbers of people.
There are thousands of different publications. These include national newspapers, regional dailies and weekly papers, free and paid-for local papers, general interest magazines, special interest magazines, trade, technical and professional magazines and in-house magazines. Most people have local directories and also use online directories such as Google to source local services. Many areas also have local lifestyle publications that are delivered free to targeted postcodes.
The advantages of advertising in newspapers and magazines
Rumours of the death of the printed word have been exaggerated. People still read newspapers and magazines. They buy them on news-stands, they subscribe to them and they welcome their arrival on the doormat.
Magazine ads allow you to reach a targeted audience. Special interest and trade titles have specialist readerships. Ads in your local newspapers offer the chance to reach large numbers of people in your area.
Producing and placing an advert can be done relatively quickly. Printed advertisements can attract attention and convey a lot of information. Readers spend time reading their favourite publications and often keep copies for reference.
Even if your advertising budget is tight, it can go a long way, advertising costs can be relatively inexpensive. And with a fast production turnaround, there’s scope to try different approaches and find out what works.
Choosing which publications to advertise in
Media planning is a science, not an art. You need to look beyond the top-line circulation figures and study the data in depth. ADS has up to date information on circulations, readerships and advertising rates of all publications in Perth, nationally and internationally.
ADS can arrange the media packs of all the publications you are considering. Check out the quality and relevance of the editorial content in those titles. See where your competitors are advertising. Ask your customers which publications they read regularly.
Now look at the data. Newspaper and magazine circulation figures are not the same as readership figures. Free papers, for instance, are widely distributed, but are frequently discarded unread. Meanwhile, copies of well-respected paid-for publications can be read by more than one person.
ADS loves getting a good deal when booking media space
Strong negotiation with advertising sales people on newspapers and magazines will make your press advertising budget stretch further. Printed advertising rates are not set in stone. Expect to pay below the rate card. If you’re a new advertiser, we make sure you get a reasonable discount to test response. You can expect sizeable discounts for booking a series of ads. Hold your nerve and book close to the final print deadline to get the best deal, however, do not select a publication based purely on rates. use your agency to find the right place and the correct package and added value for your budget.
The position of the ad is critical to its success. The best possible place for an advert is on a right-hand page, though various statistics show the figures to be very loose between left and right hand pages, less than 2%. Print reps will often charge a 10% loading for early or right hand pages.
Ads next to editorial get more exposure. As mentioned other prime positions are any early right-hand page, especially next to news pages, as well as back and inside covers of magazines. These positions cost more but are seen to deliver a higher response.
Measuring response to press advertisements
You need to gather your own intelligence about response rates. Make each of your advertisements unique, with special telephone hotlines, tailor-made email addresses, response coupons or reference numbers. Use these devices to track which advert is producing the best response. Assess the quality of the responses. How many enquiries lead to sales?
Advertising in local directories
Advertising in directories still works for small businesses because some people turn to directories when they need to find a company — using paper copies and online services. As a reference source, telephone directories like Yellow Pages and White Pages provide the contact details for businesses in a clear, well-organised way. Line listings are free and your firm can stand out from the crowd by paying for an advertisement. However their glory days are well past and will never return due to the power of the internet.
The advantages of advertising in an online directory
Web directories allow you to link your directory entry to your website. Your online directory entry or advert can also feature a local map and provide directions, they can be trackable, have QR codes and a host of other response mechanisms.
If you do business in a special trade or sector, it is essential to make sure you’re listed in the relevant trade or business directories. Business directories have a long shelf life and the people who consult them are predisposed to buy goods and services in your sector. Your potential customers use these directories as industry bibles, and they are often the first place they will look for new suppliers.
Like any directory, you will be listed alongside your competitors, so it pays to advertise to ensure you communicate what is special about your business.
Some trade directories may offer companies who are already paying for advertising the opportunity to contribute an ‘advertorial’ piece about their business. This is free advertising, and gives you the opportunity to say in detail what makes your business competitive. It is worth asking about advertorial space when you place an ad, and can often be a good bargaining tool when negotiating your ad fees, there are a minefield of options but we try to make the complex simple the complicated easy to understand and provide strong creative advertising solutions that not only look great but work.