Whether you operate on a micro, small or medium to large scale, business advertising is an important aspect to running your business. Make sure you spend time and money on determining how to advertise your business. Most businesses don't, and this can be a major downfall or risk exposure if the business simply relies on referrals. Business advertising provides you with proactive interaction with your market. Accordingly, business advertising can potentially be expenditure that will reap your business huge rewards. However, there are some important things to get right in preparing an advertising campaign.
- Use one clear message to quickly communicate your primary or core message – in basic terms 'keep it simple stupid'. This is known as a 'tag line' so take the time to develop it and to get it right. Your business advertising needs to quickly, yet simply and compellingly communicate the core message to your customer. Be prepared to change it if your test demonstrates you missed the mark. Learn from your mistakes, and don't take it personally.
- Test your message on clients and people you know, and alter it if the feedback is negative or can be improved. Trust feedback, as this gives your business a different perspective to your own. There's no point in having a great product if you are the only person who can see its value.
- Research your market and match your business advertising campaigns to it. Ensure that you actually offer a value and appeal to your target market.
- Be honest and, where possible, include references or testimonials from your happy customers.
- Make sure you deliver on your advertising promises. Support and deliver every time.
- Make your message positive, these are more likely to create 'buzz' naturally.
- Make certain your contact information is easy to understand and up to date.
- Create a call to action within your message and show value so customers are curious about you and will seek your product or services.
- Make your business stand out. Remember there is a sea of service providers, contractors and suppliers. Brainstorm your ideas with family and friends or business advisors, or small businesses you network with.
- Create a support network and business networks to share ideas. This is a key area of support and yet one often not used. Small business owners tend to get isolated; this can be detrimental in developing and implementing your advertising campaigns and delivering your goods and services.
- Link your advertising into your Marketing Strategies, and ideally into your Marketing Plan.
- Keep monitoring and report on results, research what is working and what is not. Remember to change what is not and stay creative with the changes.
Types of Business Advertising
There are many types of businesses advertising mediums but the key is to use methods that are effective marketing strategies. Simply, this means to use business advertising campaigns that result in more sales and more profits (not just one - they go hand in hand). Advertise your business wisely.
In determining how to create a successful business advertising campaign you need to first step back and look at your current marketing strategy (assuming you have one). Look at what your business has learned by your track record in sales. Make changes where change is warranted, and don’t touch what is working! If you don’t know where to start, get some expert advice.
Make sure that your focus is on your customer’s needs, and not on what you think your business needs are.
There are literally hundreds of marketing business advertising mediums, but these are the most common:
- Business advertising online - statistics show that this medium is on an upward trend in Australia.
- Flyers – these can be easily distributed to your local community or target market, although this is significantly harder to achieve as it requires quality analysis and research. Print is the oldest form of advertising but is still frequently used, whether by flyer, adverts in local papers or full blown brochure / booklets. Recently, you may have received a personal envelope addressed to you but containing a marketing flyer – the key is to get the customer to pay attention and to see the material amongst the myriad of material delivered to doorsteps everyday.
- Bill boards – local sporting clubs, bus station stands –cars and trucks.
- Word of mouth.
Stay Smart with Online Marketing and Business Advertising
In Australia, businesses and individuals are required to comply with the laws regarding SPAM. The following are suggestions on how to keep your business out of trouble. SPAM is simply the equivalent of JUNK MAIL. Officially, it is unsolicited mail and in Australia this is usually commercial advertising. SPAM includes electronic mail as well as mobile phone messaging (SMS/MMS).
Businesses must be aware of their obligations under the Spam Act so that their electronic messages sent do not breach the act or the Australian E-marketing code of Practice.
The SPAM Act prohibits the sending of spam, which is a commercial electronic message sent without the consent of the addressee via email, short message service (SMS); multimedia message (MMS) or instant messaging. To find advice on compliance with the Act see www.acma.gov.au and/or look at the many business guides available through the numerous government small business advisors or Business Enterprise Centres around Australia.