Small Business Advertising Consultant

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					   Small Business
Marketing in Midcoast
  Written & Presented by Bruce M. Hardina
               February 2009
        Presenter’s Background
Bruce Hardina is a businessman and marketing professional. He has
managed several businesses in manufacturing and food service. He has
owned a grocery store, a restaurant and an alarm company. He has a
bachelor’s degree in philosophy, a master’s degree in education and taught
public school for a number of years. He’s had hundreds of hours of formal
training in marketing and spent quite a bit of time reading studies on his
own. He has even conducted several studies himself. He continues to
attend marketing seminars put on by top marketing professionals from
across the country. Bruce has worked with about 3000 companies in Maine
as an advertising consultant and for several publishing companies. He’s
done a number of marketing workshops not unlike this one, and has been
the General Manager for Coastal Journal Publishing for the past two years
which produces multiple print and online publications.

Today’s seminar will be a brief introduction to marketing for the small
business. We will be touching on several issues, but focusing on those
which will help small businesses produce the most revenue. Consider this a
guide for what to do and in some cases why. Our time constraints keep us
from explaining every rule. Our local and national economies are in terrible
shape and it is likely to get worse. People are not buying as many things.
But they are still buying. Certain things they must buy and most people will
still buy things they don’t need but they desire. This workshop is intended to
help you get them to buy more of what they buy, from you.
           What is Marketing?

    Marketing is all the things you do that
           promote your business

•   networking/public relations
•   customer service
•   online promotion via your website
•   advertising
•   Networking is an important part of our total marketing program. We must commit
    ourselves, particularly during difficult economic times, to spending time doing it. You
    are all doing it right now. You might have thought that you might learn something
    today that would help your business, and so you came to this workshop. However,
    even if the subject matter wasn’t particularly interesting to you, you should go to
    these meetings. The chamber is doing a wonderful job of bringing business people

•   Some people feel as if there is something phony about it. That is nonsense.
    Networking affords us the opportunity to meet business people in a non-threatening
    environment and to get to know them over time. If we like them and think they are
    professional, when the time comes that we need the products or services that they
    provide, we’ll know who to go to. Likewise, they will come to us once they get to
    know us, see that we are professional and are likely to satisfy their needs.

• Some of you may think that the following is a given, but
   trust me it is not. So I’m going to tell you.
• Dress nicely and wear clean clothes. Like it or not we are judged by
   how we look. Enjoy yourself. Have a good time and don’t be afraid
   to show it. Remember, networking is selling. We are representing
   our businesses. Put your best foot forward. Show everyone that you
   are professional and how satisfying it would be to do business with
Customer Service
 Customer service is one kind of marketing and it is essential
 for most businesses. Good customer service will sell your
 products over and over. Everyone you meet, everyone you
 know, who knows the business you’re in, gets an impression
 about your business by your actions and the same is true for
 all your employees.

 Your employees are your ambassadors. Every time they greet
 a person with a smile, help them with a smile, solve their
 problem with a smile they build good will in the community
 and you get more business from it as a result. It may not be
 obvious that you got business from their actions, but you
Customer Service
 Likewise, every time you or someone in your company does
 not do business with a smile, does not help and solve
 problems with a smile, you lose business. You may not be able
 to trace it to those actions, but you lose business nonetheless.
 People just won’t show up again.

 So, every person in your organization, including and most
 importantly yourself is a salesperson focusing on customer
 service. All of your actions have results for your business.
 Make them good results. And remember, it is much easier and
 less expensive to keep a customer than to find a new one.
Customer Service
 One more thing: Always be courteous to salespeople. They
 know more people and can influence more people than just
 about anyone else in our society. You don’t have to buy from
 them. You don’t even have to listen to what they wish to tell
 you. But don’t be rude. It can’t possibly make you feel good
 and most certainly won’t make them feel good. And why would
 you want to hurt someone’s feelings especially someone who
 may live in your community and can influence so many.
(A Website Doesn’t Have to Be Beautiful)

Developing a website: People (midcoast demographics) use websites
to conveniently find information, and sometimes to buy. Make sure it
is easy to use. I cannot stress this point enough.

When planning your website, list everything that someone might want
to know about your business. Try using other sites to find information
to get ideas. Then ask others, even your friends, what they would want
to know about your business, and use all that information to create
your site. The organization of all this material is an essential part of
the usability of the site.
Be careful about using your son or daughter because they went to
school for graphic arts. It would be nice to give them the work, or to
save the cost of using a professional, but it will cost you dearly in
sales if you take that approach. Your priority must be to build your
business, not give your child practice. Use a well established
company that has references. Check those references just as if they
were asking you for a job. They are. You can have your child or
friend help you with the process, offer advice, but use a professional
to create it.
Check out sites the particular professional has created and try
them out. See if it is easy to find what you are looking for on them.
Take notes about what is user friendly and what is not. Talk to the
business owners to see how the process went using that website
developer. Learn what you can. Make your plan and then have the
developer go to it.

Don’t be afraid to tweak it as many times as necessary and expect
that this process will take many months, perhaps longer.

As a test, after you are satisfied with your site and have made all
the changes you think you need to, then have others try to use it
to find info about your company that they would need.
In terms of finding your site, a good website developer will set it up to
maximize your exposure on the internet utilizing Google and other
search engines in the most advantageous ways.

Use your print ads to help drive people to your site.

Don’t drive people to it if it isn’t ready. Good enough is not good
enough! Meet your customers’ expectations.
Do I Need to Advertise?

•   I have occasionally heard from a small business owner that they don’t
    need to advertise because they have been in business for so long.
    “Everybody knows me here,” is what they say. Don’t assume that
    everyone knows who you are. They really don’t, no matter how long
    you have been around. Some people will. Many people may but
    definitely not everyone, not even close.
Do I Need to Advertise?

•   Even those who do know you and your reputation (assuming it is a good
    one) need to be reminded to purchase from you. Is there anyone who
    doesn’t know who Pepsi, McDonald’s, Sears, Home Depot, Walmart,
    Starbucks, Target, etc. etc. etc. are, or what they have to offer? And yet
    these companies and others like them spend billions of dollars reminding
    us who they are and what they have to offer, and they do so with
    extraordinary success. So we need to remind our customers why they
    have been doing business with us. And advertising done properly can be
    an excellent way to do that.
    Do I Need to Advertise?
•   Attrition is a normal part of business:

    • A) People move away every year, and new people move in to our
       communities. Those people don’t know who we are. Those new people
       read newspapers, particularly community newspapers, to find out about
       their new communities.

    • B) There is always someone in our community who is dying.

    • C) And no matter how committed we are to customer service,
       sometimes we lose a customer to dissatisfaction with us. Attrition is a
       normal part of business, thus, we need to replace those customers with
       new ones. Advertising, done properly, can be a very effective tool as
       part of an overall marketing plan.
          Advertising Principles

There are many factors that contribute to the effectiveness of a successful
advertising campaign. Among them are an effective advertisement,
advertising in more than one publication, the credibility of your organization
in the marketplace (not just the value of the product that you sell or produce
but how your organization is run and thus perceived), as well as Reach and
Reach & Frequency

•   Reach and Frequency are two fundamental principles in advertising.
    They are considered fundamental principles for one simple reason:
    literally tens of thousands of studies have been done at a cost that runs
    into the hundreds millions of dollars over many decades and the results
    have been consistent. Without Reach and Frequency we simply cannot
    run an effective advertising campaign, we are not using our dollars
    effectively. We are wasting our money.

•   Reach is defined as the greatest number of people reached in the
    desired marketplace. For example, if you own a small business you
    would want to reach as many people as possible in the geographic
    area that you can reasonably expect to draw from.

•   A restaurant in Damariscotta that is unusual enough could draw from
    as far south as Brunswick or perhaps even Freeport. A friend of mine
    was the original owner and operator of King Eider’s Pub in
    Damariscotta. When he started advertising to reach the greater
    Brunswick market, he developed a significant amount of regular
    business from that area because his restaurant was that good.

•   If there is an advertising outlet that reaches people in both your
    immediate area and extended area for a reasonable cost, that might be
    a good place to be. There may be value for your business to advertise
    in a publication with a smaller and more geographically narrow
    readership but you may be reaching a smaller portion of your potential
    market. In short you may be missing vital potential business.
•   Frequency is defined simply as having a consistent or frequent message. In
    radio and TV that means every day, several times a day at the same times of
    day. In print it means being in every issue that has the same readership. In the
    case of a daily newspaper, a Sunday or weekend edition may not have the
    same readership as the paper during the week. Some people only read the
    Sunday edition of the daily paper. In the case of a weekly newspaper, it means
    being in every issue. To understand why, we must understand the buying
    process. In short the ad needs to be “in front of people when they are ready to
    buy the product. Having it in once, or once in a while simply won’t do.

•   Reach and frequency are fundamental principles of advertising precisely
    because adhering to them quite simply results in a better return for the
Radio can offer both Reach and Frequency, the latter by having an
adequate number of radio spots. Reach is a bit trickier however. And radio
in general is dieing as an advertising medium.

There are several reasons for this:

   With CDs and MP3s fewer people than ever are listening to commercial
   radio. That means your advertising investment reaches fewer people,
   fewer potential buyers.
Our culture is speeding up all the time. For those people that are still
listening to commercial radio, many of them have little patience to sit
through commercials. They simply change the station.

Most people who listen to the radio, do so while they are driving. How
will they write down the name of the business? According to the radio
industry’s own studies it takes at least 7 times hearing a business name
to remember it. With fewer and fewer people listening to radio, and fewer
still listening to ads on the radio, how can you get a return for your
investment? You usually can’t.
Finally, in the Marketing industry we have a term called
fragmentation. In the case of radio, this means there are simply too
many stations that you need to advertise on in order to reach your
geographic and demographic market. Radio suffers from
fragmentation. In short, radio is dieing as an advertising medium
because it is no longer able to offer advertisers a return.
    TV can be an awesome way to advertise depending on the business. There
    are some things to consider however:

–      As fragmented as radio is TV is even more so. There are virtually hundreds of stations
       and they can all claim a significant viewership. It can be challenging for a small business
       to afford to advertise on enough of them often enough and still have a return.

–      Like radio it is very easy to simply switch channels when a commercial comes on and that
       is exactly what many people do.

–      It’
       It’s usually very expensive to do it properly. The production costs can be quite high and
       your commercial must be aired constantly (frequency) which of course ads to the costs.

–      It can be exciting for us to see our ad on TV and people are more likely to mention it
       when they come into our business because it is exciting for them too, but that does not
       necessarily indicate a better return than other types of advertising. Rather it may indicate
       a greater likelihood for people to mention that they see the ad.

TV ads work best for businesses that have a very large market, a
national or even international market or perhaps in urban areas
where there are millions of potential buyers. The costs are then
offset by the returns because you are reaching so many people. But
in the case of a small business in midcoast Maine, there just aren’t
enough people to effect a return and justify the costs.

We have all read the headlines that print is dieing, however, when
we look past the headlines we find what is really going on. Print has
two problems: diminishing readership & profitability.

It is true that daily newspapers are losing readers. It is also true that other
forms of print are not. In fact weekly and monthly publications are increasing
their readership across the nation.

The real and biggest problem for all print is profitability, but that is not our
concern today.

The issue for advertisers is how many people are seeing the advertisement.
 How Do I know I’m Getting A
 Return from My Advertising?

“Anecdotal evidence/eyewitness testimony is notoriously unreliable.” You
are not going to be able to get reliable information by asking people how
they found out about you. Some people will remember correctly. Many
people will not. And investing in your business is too important to make
decisions based on unreliable evidence.

People do not remember reliably where they have seen an advertisement.

Point Sebago scenario
Job Fair studies
How Do I know I’m Getting A
Return from My Advertising?

  It’s not just a crap shoot.
  The way you know if you are getting a good response to your
  advertising is if:

 1.   you are in a good publication (readership, pub style & pagination).

 2.   you have an effective ad in that publication (placement counts).

 3.   you have a product that people wish to pay for.
    How do you determine if a pub is
              well read?
•   How long has it been around? If it’s many years it probably has a following.
    If it’s been less than ten years it may not.

•   Does it do something that no other pub does, in a way that other pubs don’t
    or is it the same as other pubs in the region? Does it focus on national and
    international issues or local ones? They both have their place. If two pubs
    are locally focused, do they address different local issues or address them
    differently. One may be straight reporting and another may focus on

•   If a company prints and distributes 15,000 papers it doesn’t mean
    they have that many readers. If only 5,000 papers get picked up,
    that’s how many readers they have. Don’t let publishing companies
    tell you that readership is some multiple of the papers distributed.
    Assume 1 reader per picked up paper. Ask your sales
    professional from the paper for information in writing including how
    many papers are distributed and how many are picked up. They
    may provide that information as a % of distribution which is fine also.

•   How a paper is distributed is important as well. Remember, we’re trying to
    figure out how many people actually read the particular paper. If it is a paid
    paper and it gets mailed to those who have a subscription, that is good.
    However, if it is a free paper and is mailed, that may not be so good. How
    would you know how many people want the paper and thus read it? It could
    be that most of the papers are getting thrown out. If it is free and is
    distributed in racks in stores and if the paper knows how many get picked
    up, then that is desirable too. If someone picks up a paper, they

    want it and are likely to read it.
Pub Style

There is an awful lot to say about pub style. However, keep in mind
how people read a newspaper or any publication. The size of the
page is important. If the page is very large, the reader may be able
to read the editorial material and not see the ads. You don’t want
that. The ideal sized publication from an advertiser’s perspective
should be from 98 square inches (magazine size) to 135 square
inches. Staying within these limits will maximize the likelihood of
ads being seen on a page. And ads that are seen are more likely to
be read. And ads that are read are more likely to bring you
This refers to how a pub is laid out, put together. Try to envision what it is
like for a reader. Is it virtually impossible to read an editorial and miss the
advertisers on the page? Or is it easy to avoid or miss the ads. Except for
special advertising sections for holiday or other sales, most people don’t
read pubs for the ads. They read pubs for the stories and see the ads while
they’re reading, if and only if the pub is paginated or laid out, in a way that is
conducive to seeing the ads. It takes a lot of thought and a lot of effort. But it
is well worth it because advertisers get a much better response when it is
done properly. Having the pages of editorial segregated from the pages of
ads is not helpful to the advertisers.
  Cost Per Column Inch Per Reader

I can’t think of anything that is more important than this
issue for advertisers. Advertising is an investment because there is
a return, unlike expenses, like electricity, accounting services, etc.,
which may be necessary but don’t offer a return. What we need to do is
focus on maximizing the return. Just like we wouldn’t choose to buy the
cheapest possible car, refrigerator or stocks, we shouldn’t be looking
for the cheapest possible paper to advertise in. The cheapest car is
likely to break down often. The cheapest stocks are likely to lose rather
than make money for you. And the cheapest ad in the cheapest paper
is likely to have little to no return (profit).
So rather than looking at the cost per column
inch (CPCI), what you really need to examine is
the cost per column inch per reader (CPCIPR).
We should be looking for the one with the best
return on advertising investment and how many
people actually read a paper is the most
important factor.
Let’s assume that two papers are in the market area and everything else is
the same except the CPCI and the readership. 1st we must determine the
readership and then we figure out the CPCIPR. Precision is essential so we
do it mathematically and it’s fairly simple. To determine the readership you
take the number of papers distributed and subtract the number of papers
that are returned. The result is how many papers are picked up and thus,
read-readership. This information should be readily available from any
paper. They may simply provide the return rate or the pickup rate. You can
do the math to convert it or use what they provide you with.
Then to determine the CPCIPR you divide the CPCI by the number of
papers picked up in 1000ths. This will give you CPCIPR per thousand. The
numbers are too minute not to do it in thousandths. For example: Paper A
has CPCI of $15.00, distributes 14,000 papers, and has a 30% pickup rate
(70% return rate). That means only 30% of the papers distributed are picked
up and read. 30% of 14,000 is 4200. That’s how many readers paper A
actually has. Now, remember, in order to figure out the CPCIPR you divide
the CPCI by the number of readers. 15 divided by 4.2 = 3.57 or $3.57
PCIPR( in thousandths).
Now let’s look at paper B. It distributes 18,000 papers and has a 93%
pickup rate (7% return rate). That means 93% of the papers are picked up
and read. 93% of 18,000 is 16,740. The CPCI is $16.00. 16 divided by
16.74 = .9557 or $.96 PCIPR (in thousandths). Although paper A has a
lower CPCI rate, paper B as a far lower CPCIPR rate and thus a much more
cost effective place to advertise.

Simply put paper B offers a superior return on investment (ROI).
Elements of an Effective Ad
1) Eye catcher: Most people see ads when
they are reading a story in a paper. Your ad
must jump out at them and catch their attention
if they are going to read it. A company logo can
be that attention getter if people recognize it or
if it says something relevant like the T logo for
Toyota. It can be difficult and expensive to
create a logo that sticks in peoples’ minds and
tells them what you sell. A graphic that you
don’t own or a tagline may work just as well.
Elements of an Effective Ad
2) Head/Tag line:
  •   Clearly communicates what is being sold.
  •   honest, direct, not offensive.

3) Reliability:
   Credibility is a valuable, uncommon
   commodity. Stating that your business has
   been serving the community for 36 years
   says a lot about your business, about your
Elements of an Effective Ad
Name brands:
  Many people look for particular brands, e.g.
  Whirlpool, GE, Toyota, Panasonic. Tell them
  you have what they are looking for.

  •   If you’re featuring a particular product, use a
      photo of that product. We are visual beings.
      Photos of you and/or your employees can also
      be powerful. Photos sell.
Elements of an Effective Ad
One Message:
  Stick to one message. Sometimes business owners
  want to have multiple messages in the ad to save
  money rather than placing multiple ads. It’s
  confusing and will drive away customers/readers or
  the ad will just be skipped over. Your business must
  have an advertising budget that’s appropriate for
  getting out your message. Don’t waste your money
  by cluttering up your ad with multiple messages.
  Those ads are less likely to work.
Elements of an Effective Ad
Contact Info:
  Be sure to include your phone number, physical
  address and website address.
  People are conditioned to look for contact
  information at the bottom of the ad. To make it easy
  for readers to find it, make sure that’s where yours
  is located.
  An email address is not necessary, however, if you
  are to include one make sure it is checked &
  responded to daily. The surest way to lose a
  potential customer is to say you’re going to do
  something or even imply it (like including an email
  address in your ad), and then not respond promptly
  to their email inquiry.
Elements of an Effective Ad
Color Matters:
  Colorful ads attract attention and that’s what ads
  need. Most ads in newspapers aren’t in color,
  therefore the ones that are, stand out.
Elements of an Effective Ad
Readability: The ad must be easily read
or it won’t be read at all. Here’s a couple
of tips:
  Avoid using more than three different fonts if
  possible. Our minds have to keep switching
  gears with each font. We need the readers
  to get the information they want easily. This
  is the 1st impression you get to make in the
  overall selling process.
Elements of an Effective Ad
 Have breathing room around your text and
 graphics. This is called White Space. If you
 absolutely need all the text and graphics in an
 ad and it is crowded, you need a larger ad.
 Don’t crowd your ad. A crowded ad is difficult
 to read. A difficult to read ad doesn’t get read,
 and an ad that doesn’t get read won’t produce
 business for you. In advertising size really
 does matter.
The End

• Thank you for coming!

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