Many successful business operators are natural marketers, either intentionally or subconsciously, because a successful business is about offering the right products at the right prices to the right people. The so-called 4 Ps of marketing are: Product, Price, Place and Promotion.
Most people would have a good grasp of Product (services), Price and Place but find promotion difficult and distracting from running their business.
Unfortunately, Promotion – letting people know about your business offering – is essential to running a profitable business. Promotional activities broadly include advertising, public relations, sales promotion and personal selling. Advertising is the most visible activity most business operators use to promote their business.
Before the digital era, the choice for small and medium business operators was to place advertisements in the local paper, Yellow Pages or trade journal/magazine. Or if the budget allowed radio and TV advertising were also good choices.
Nowadays, the choices are overwhelming. Costs for traditional advertising channels came down, and many digital advertising platforms such as Google AdWords, display banners, Facebook post and adv, blogging, videos, podcasts and many more. This is great for many businesses but also poses great challenges for many businesses to get their promotional mix right.
In the following sections, we try to provide you with some practical insights and hopefully help you to manage better your promotional activities.
ROLE OF ADVERTISING
From time to time, I hear some business operators declare proudly that they never need to advertise their business. While I admire how well they run their business, I think they somehow misunderstand the role of advertising.
The role of advertising is not to make or break a business. Every sustainable business has to rely on two groups of customers – repeat customers and referred customers – for their continuing business success.
The ability to retain customers and keep them coming back for more means the business is having the right marketing mix in place, intentionally or subconsciously, and it is offering the right products/services to the right audience with the right communication in the market place.
Some customers are so happy with the business that they refer them to their circle of friends via word of mouth, online testimonial, or social media so the business obtains new customers that are sold before they even come.
If these two groups of customers are filling your business capacity then you don’t need to advertise as the role of advertising is to introduce new people to your business for you to turn into repeat customers and increase the pool of clientele.
For many small and medium business operators, allocating an advertising budget, choosing the right marketing channel, deciding what to advertise and preparing artwork are all challenges. In the following sections we hope our insights can help with your decision-making, and in some areas we offer services to take the burden away so you can do what you enjoy – running your business!
LEVERAGE YOUR EXISTING CUSTOMERS
As mentioned above, promotion is an important part of marketing, and advertising is only a part of promotional activities that businesses can undertake to communicate with potential customers.
One important asset of business is the existing customer data base, and this asset is often underutilised.
After a business is in operation for a few years, it is natural for some customers to drift away, and even the most active repeat customers may not know your full range of products/services, or new products you brought online.
Regular phone calls or visits certainly are the best but maybe impractical for every customer, especially those less active ones. One effective way to communicate is a well crafted email newsletter on a regular basis such as bi-weekly, monthly, bi-monthly or quarterly.
There are many ways to write your newsletter, however. Below are some of the components of a well-crafted email newsletter for your consideration.
- An opening paragraph that resonates with how you talk, telling customers that you will be writing regular newsletter if this is your first time, and letting them know what is in this newsletter.
- Share how your business is doing and which product lines are doing well now.
- Share what product lines are now becoming slow and ask for feedback and even solutions.
- Share some insights in your particular industry. Your customers might be dealing with you but not necessarily across all facets of your industry, and your insights might be of interest to them.
- Offer specials or other promotion if you have any.
- Meet with you to understand your business and products/services.
- Create a content list for the newsletter.
- Draft the newsletter copy.
- Set up the newsletter template.
- Set up your customer data base.
- Approval and distribution of newsletter.
*Please be sure your database belongs to you, and we will not use your database for anything else apart from what you instructed us to do.
Quite often in advertising the challenge is defining who the target audience is. Many marketing consultants will have you building a profile of your ideal customers.
Armed with the profile of your ideal customers, you then go ahead to look at what is the best channel and what is the message to communicate with your ideal customers. There is one problem: Do your ideal customers think you are their ideal supplier?
Luckily for many businesses, the answer is right under their noses. Their repeat customers are their idea customers who accept the whole marketing mix of the business.
Business operators should draw inspiration from studying their repeat customers as a group to understand their business strengths and develop their marketing strategy to pull in more customers with a similar profile to their existing ones.
The advantage of businesses using their repeat customers to build their ideal customer profile is obvious. The customers accept what the business has to offer and the business is good at servicing them. By building a marketing strategy based on talking to similar people, the business will have greater success in attracting new leads and turning them into repeat customers.
In the following sections, this idea is applied throughout to give some insights to build effective print advertising, email newsletter campaign and social advertising campaigns.
We also offer marketing consultation to analyse the marketing position of your business and develop an action plan for your initiatives.
Direct Mail Marketing
Email Newsletter Marketing
Social Media Marketing
South City Bulletin is a monthly glossy magazine in Brisbane Southside by independent local business, Brijova Consultants Pty Ltd. It creates and curates valuable information for its readership in print, online and social, and provides integrated marketing services to advertisers.
To get a South City Bulletin media kit and rate card, please contact us.
To be a valuable communication platform for local residents and businesses on the Southside of greater Brisbane and beyond.
Promote positive stories in local community
Provide valuable information to enrich life
Add Brand value
Generate quality leads and customers
Monthly print of 38,000 copies
- Selected letterboxes
- Top 20 – 40% household incomes
- Own home without mortgage
- High traffic businesses
|Coorparoo||Greenslopes||Camp Hill||Holland Park|
|Holland Park West||Tarragindi||Mt Gravatt||Mt Gravatt East|
|Wishart||Upper Mt Gravatt||MacGregor||Robertson|
|Sunnybank||Eight Mile Plains||Sunnybank Hills||Runcorn|
|Slacks Creek||Daisy Hill||Shailer Park||Meadowbrook|
- 25 – 65 years of age
- 65% female
- Family focus
- Enjoy travelling
- Interested in fashion and lifestyle
- Look for entertainment activities
- Care about education
Print advertisings in South City Bulletin include display Adv, Advertorial editorial, and various features.
|Height (mm)||Width (mm)|
|1/4p||200||1 – 2|
|1/2p||450||2 – 3|
|f/p||800||2 – 4|
Special Topics Feature
- Women In Business (July Issue)
- Meet the Principal (March Issue)
- Our Schools (June Issue)
- Captains’ Reports (September Issue)
- School Achievements (November Issue)
- Logan Chamber Business Excellence Awards (August Issue)
- French Affairs (July Issue)
- Winter Getaway (May Issue)
DIRECT MAIL MARKETING
Direct mail through post office delivery to selected target business is a tried and true way of getting new leads and customers.
South City Bulletin creative team can help you develop the right message, draft the letter, print and mail your letters through post office services
To get a quote, please contact us.
EMAIL NEWSLETTER MARKETING
Your existing customers are valuable assets you can tap in to increase sales, and with better communication you can also re-activate dormant customers.
How to send out regular email newsletter without offending your client base is a challenge requiring thought, knowledge and skill.
South City Bulletin creative team can help you draft conversational email newsletters to inform, communicate and draw feedbacks from your customer database.
To arrange a free initial consultation, please contact us.
SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING
Social media marketing such as Facebook post and advertising is becoming very popular but with more business wanting to get into the action it is also becoming very crowded.
It is a challenge for businesses to constantly creating meaningful posts to followers, or to create attractive adv to generate clicks and customers in the fast moving social media screens.
South City Bulletin creative team provide social media marketing services including Facebook account management, Facebook Adv creation and placement, or as required by clients.
To discuss how we can help, please contact us.
Print media has been disrupted by the development of digital technology and the advance of online and social media.
The talk of print media disappearing may be premature, but print media does need to adjust its market positioning in the new media landscape and offer unique value to its readership and advertisers.
Print media should realise that it is not in the news market anymore as it cannot compete with the speed of online and social media, radio and television. Instead, print media should take advantage of its tactile, localised nature to weave itself into the fabric of the local community, act as the chief communication platform to champion the community spirit, and build layers of online and social platform on its print base.
I once asked my 14-year-old daughter, who reads many books on her kindle, if she prefers a kindle book or a print book. Her answer was a print book because it is nicer. So print media still has hope; we just need to do better and offer the right marketing mix to our audience and advertisers.
THE ROLE OF PRINT IN THE DIGITAL AGE
The tsunami of digital waves swept across every corner of our lives, and print media suffered hugely, losing readership and advertisers. Instead of fighting a losing battle, print media advertising needs to redefine what are its strengths and the role it can play in the digital age.
The “news” and “searchable” functions of print media is mostly replaced by online media. But the “reach” function of the print media is still very valuable.
People can search anything and find what they want to know online, but they cannot search for something that they don’t know. A well curated, well-respected local magazine can present a business to its readership and generate leads directly or drive traffic to its website.
The stickiness of readership and the shelf life of print media are the keys to increase the exposure of advertisers. It is therefore no coincidence that various surveys and studies found the weekly daily newspapers and weekly community newspapers are losing readership and advertisers, but newspapers that offer in-depth articles and magazine titles are maintaining, and some are even increasing, their readership.
The strategy of South City Bulletin, as a monthly gloss community magazine, is to champion the community spirit, promoting positive stories and activities in the local community and provide valuable lifestyle information.
The feedback from readers has been heart-warming for our stories and our long-term advertisers have been happy with their investments.
WHAT TO ADVERTISE
Deciding what message to put in the adv can be challenging for some business operators. It is important to align the message to the strengths of the business to ensure the advertisement is working and the return is worth the investment.
Businesses are well advised to draw inspiration from existing customers to develop their marketing message to communicate to potential clients.
For example, instead of putting “providing great services” in the adv, talk to a few of your repeat customers about why they keep coming back to you, and you will find a few key phrases keep popping up. Use these phrases to crystallise what great services you provide and these phrases will resonate better with an audience having a similar profile to your existing customers.
Another example would be to put a big discount on a non-moving product in the adv to try to clear it, or promote product packages, which include a popular product that most your repeat customers like. You might have a chance of clinching someone who wants your non-moving product, but your chance of appealing to potential clients is better with a popular product in the adv.
We provide a consultation service to help you develop your marketing message. Send us an email here or call on 07 3804 3696.
EFFECTIVE ADV DESIGN
Every adv has roughly about 3 seconds to get noticed, and once it is noticed the adv has as long as a minute to sell the business to potential customers. So effective design is important for garnering a response to your advertising campaign.
You can choose a minimalist design where you only showcase one single product or message that you are certain would attract your ideal customers. Or you can choose at another extreme a supermarket style design where you display a range of your products, knowing that at least one of them will attract your potential customers.
Whichever style you go for the basic elements include:
- A catchy headline
- A photo to appeal to the right brain
- A key message that resonates with your ideal customers
- A call to Action
- Your logo
- Your contact details
CALL TO ACTION
A call to action is important to increase your response rate. A specific offer for people to make the call or take action is helpful but not a must
A simple prompt like “Call now” or “Visit website” can make a significant difference in the response to the adv.
Traditionally, a call will ask people to visit or phone the store; however, people are increasingly checking out the website of the business before they take further action. So a well-presented website is important to link print advertising and increase response rates.
To get a South City Bulletin media kit and rate card, please contact us.
This Page is currently under construction, please stay tune.