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Marketing / Business marketing

How to leverage advertising with small business promotions

If you’re thinking of advertising in a local or national publication, your ad needs one important ingredient – a promotion. This could double your sales.

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Advertising is often the first step when you want to increase your sales. You have to spend money to make money, right?

So you research and select the first place to advertise – perhaps putting all your eggs in one basket. Let’s say you’re a jewellery maker and you advertise in your local magazine or newspaper. You book an ad, pay for the space through a sales person, and it’s expensive, ouch! You then pay a designer to create the ad – more money! Once the ad is published you wait anxiously for the phone to ring and orders to come in.

The old way of thinking is not enough anymore

As soloists and micro business owners you need to be more creative, and engage your customers more effectively. You need to capture people’s attention immediately, and hold it long enough to get your message across.

While we all understand that content is king and expand our businesses with blogs, videos, white papers and other marketing tools, we haven’t applied this to advertising.

"There’s no doubt that promotions are more engaging than advertising, so ensure you give yourself the best chance to engage your new customers."

The new way to advertise?

Creatively engage your new customers with an exciting opportunity, minus the overt sales tactics. Support your advertising with small business promotions.

When in discussions with your preferred publication for advertising, ask if you can offer your product or service as a giveaway to support your advertising. It’s a simple question, which could yield some big results.

They may be able to giveaway your product or service to their audience in their e-newsletter, on social media or as a reader reward. As a result you stretch your dollar further and create an opportunity to capture people’s attention with something a little more seductive than just an ad or pop up banner.

Promotions lead to engagement

There’s no doubt that promotions are more engaging than advertising, so ensure you give yourself the best chance to engage your new customers. A promotion encourages consumers to imagine they’ve won the prize. When they see a promotion, they immediately imagine themselves with the product. It’s a competition, so there is a slight chance they could have that product – and the emotional engagement with your brand begins.

Plus, you’ve just created some more content.

Content you say? Yes! It’s not very appealing to post on your Facebook feed that you’re running an ad in a local newspaper, but it is exciting to inform your followers that you’re running a promotion and that they should enter.

So, remember to consider running a promotion before handing over your money for advertising space. It could double your sales.

What are your thoughts on leveraging advertising by running small business promotions?

Amanda Westphal

created Prize Pig, an online platform busting with media competitions that any small business can access to get major media space without the media spend. Connect with her on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter

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