Business Advertising Tips - Getting The Size Of Your Advertisement Right And Campaign Advertising

By Sean Mullooly

Before making decisions on the size of your ad, it is good advertising practice to think about your target audience (your potential customers) and where they are most likely to find your ad in the newspaper.

Your business will benefit from advertising if you reach your target audience with an attractive advertising campaign with effective advertising copy.

Likewise, your business will benefit if the advert is included in the right area of the paper. If you are selling a service, it usually makes sense to go into the classified section where the ads are typically smaller, as customers will seek classified ads. If your business is selling products, a larger ad in the R.O.P (run of paper) section is usually more suitable.

Your chosen newspaper(s) should have ideas for your advertising copy, but many adverts fail because they are not written with the right reader in mind! Use this checklist to ensure that your advert is sized correctly by only including the information necessary to attract customers:

1. If you are using a picture, make sure it relates to your business, your target audience and is interesting; 2. Your ad should be personalised and therefore written as if you are addressing the needs of an individual customer; 3. The advert should shout benefits and whisper costs, but keep the benefits realistic; 4. Do not expect a high response if you take an ad for only 1 or 2 insertions. The most successful advertisers in local newspapers are using leverage, taking out 26-week or 52-week contracts; 5. Ask your advertising sales rep to help you devise a campaign for your business. This will involve changing the copy slightly every 6-8 weeks, highlighting a different selling point and benefit to the customer each time.

An advertising campaign is a series of adverts that highlights a range of benefits offered by your services and/or products.

For example, imagine that you are running a garden center, you would take 4 or 5 of your most popular products and brainstorm their features and benefits. For your most popular/most advanced lawnmower this may read: cuts grass quietly; hard-wearing blades so have to change them less often saving you money; lightweight chassis so easy to manoeuvre.

Once you are happy with your first advert, running a campaign is as easy as changing the headline to match the benefit and modifying your advertising copy on rotation. You could run an advertisement for your business, featuring your chosen product, for a number of weeks before repeating the process with your other products - weeding kits, garden furniture, topsoil etc.

From here it is simple to tailor your campaign to accommodate seasonal variations or special offers on public holidays, e.g. feature your garden furniture during the summer months.

This is a really effective way to keep name recognition and brand awareness levels high amongst your readership while not losing your ad's effect.

Sean Mullooly is Business Development Executive for the CT Community Telegraph in Belfast, Northern Ireland. He has an Oxford University BA Honours Degree in History and Politics. Sean specialises in affordable and effective advertising solutions for small and medium-sized businesses in the Greater Belfast area. Distributed throughout the Greater Belfast area, CT Community Telegraph enjoys a total readership of 196,000 adults every week. Offering an impressive distribution of 132,989, it is the province's leading free weekly publication.

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