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Offline Promotion


Understanding the Different Methods of Offline Promotion

Copyright © Stone Evans, The Home Biz Guy


No business can survive the long run without some form of consistent
advertising. As a result, most business owners will eventually
consider using advertising to promote their business.

The toughest part of the advertising equation is in determining
where and how to spend your advertising dollars. If you do it wrong,
you could plunk down your entire advertising budget and receive
absolutely no return on your investment. But, if you do it right,
your advertising could continue to bring a nice return for years to
come.

HOW DO I MAKE THE RIGHT ADVERTISING DECISIONS

In order to make good decisions concerning how to spend your
advertising budget, you must first have a good understanding of the
different types of advertising and promotion available and what can
be expected to be achieved by each.

· You must understand which markets the different media’s can reach.
· You must understand the demographics of the media’s consumers.
· You must understand the buying habits of the consumers reached
through the media.

WHAT OFFLINE ADVERTISING & PROMOTION MEDIA’S SHOULD BE CONSIDERED

The media’s that people think of most often are television, radio,
newspaper and magazine advertising. Of course, these are the big
boys that big businesses use regularly.

Other methods of promotion include trade shows, press releases,
direct sales, telemarketing, word of mouth, branding and billboard
advertising.

CONSIDERING THE BIG MEDIA OUTLETS

The big boys of advertising media’s generally cost big bucks. Given
certain circumstances, the big media’s can be bought for very little
money.

Take for example, television, radio and newspapers cost big bucks
during their prime times, but can be bought for pennies on the
dollar during non-primetime hours.

Television primetime is between 7pm and 10pm. Radio primetime is
between 7am and 6pm. With newspapers, the primetime is Wednesdays
and Sundays.

If you intend to hit a media during prime time, get ready to drop
some bucks. Primetime means that you will be able to hit more
consumers during these times. So, in most cases, a primetime buy
will enable you to reach more people with your advertising.

Non-primetime hours can still deliver a lot of eyes and ears to your
message, and sometimes, these off-hours can be bought for a bargain
basement price.

GETTING MILEAGE FROM EVENTS

Trade shows and press releases are more event-driven. The trade show
is the event, while the press release generally exploits an event.

Trade shows are an exceptional tool when you deal directly with
potential sellers of your products or services. Other shows are
directed at the consumer, and those can be very valuable avenues for
sales as well.

The press release is aimed towards gaining attention for a business
by distributing newsworthy information about the business.

Sometimes the appearance of a business at a trade show or other show
can provide the necessary angle for a press release. But most often,
a successful press release will actually require more noteworthy
information than the appearance of a business at a show.

Yet, even the most mundane of information could be spiced up to give
the real air of importance necessary to get your press release read
and printed.

The great thing about a press release is that might permit you to
get relatively inexpensive promotion on television, radio,
newspapers and magazines; for far less than what it would cost you
to buy advertising in those same outlets.

UTILIZING A SALES TEAM

Depending on what type of business you run and the consumers you are
trying to reach, you might find direct sales and telemarketing to be
very lucrative ways to drive sales to your business.

Both are very similar in nature. Direct sales can be very expensive,
as it requires a great investment of time to accommodate.
Telemarketing seeks to minimize the time expenditure, but it often
leads to a smaller degree of respect and attention.

Depending on your product or service — and always depending upon
the people you employ to the task — each method will be more
suited to each business on an individual basis.

BRANDING YOUR BUSINESS

I grouped branding and billboard advertising together in my original
list for a reason. I did this because billboard advertising serves
most businesses best by helping to support the process of branding.

Branding is the process of establishing your business as the
supplier of a certain product or service, or in emphasizing a
certain USP (Unique Selling Proposition) as it pertains to your
business.

If branding and USP seems to be a confusing concept, think about
Wal-Mart and their tag line: “Always Low Prices, Always.”

Think about Ford Motors, “Quality is Job One.”

Think about the Visa Card, “It’s Everywhere You Want To Be.”

You see, these top corporations have managed to make their USP part
of their branding.

Even if you are only competing in a local marketplace, your USP can
and should fit snugly into your branding strategy.

NO MATTER THE MEDIA OR METHOD

Whichever method or media you should choose to employ in your
advertising and promotion, you should become knowledgable about your
market, and the consumers reached by each media. It is important to
understand which consumers can be reached by a certain media, and in
what quantities.

However you choose to spend your advertising dollars, you should
always track the results of your promotional efforts. Failing to
track successes and failures will ultimately lead to the failure of
a business.

When you know whom you are trying to reach and how you think you
might be able to reach them, you will begin to learn how to use
advertising and promotion to make your business successful. That is
a good thing — after all, that is why you got into the business in
the first place, isn’t it?

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