Small Business Owners seem to be allocating a great deal of their advertising and marketing budgets towards Print Advertising these days. It’s no surprise as well as there are a bounty of local newspapers, shoppers guides, etc. that are touting both terrific ad exposure (circulation) and affordable ad rates to the Small Business Owner.
Well … first things first. For those who don’t know something about my credentials let me start out by saying that I’m a former print advertising professional myself. Having spent several years as a District Manager, Marketing Consultant, and Advertising Executive at two of the largest newspaper holding companies in South Georgia and North Florida I’m perhaps somewhat qualified to speak on the subject of Print Advertising ROI.
A certain amount of local advertising in print mediums is in most cases healthy and effective.
I often see local businesses investing the vast majority of their advertising and marketing budgets on newspaper and shoppers guide type print ads. Don’t misunderstand what I’m saying. It’s smart to keep your name or product in front of potential customers and clients via your local newspaper and in some cases your local classified shoppers guide. It’s especially a good investment when the paper also hosts a digital or online edition of the medium. However many don’t and when they do your ad is not prominently featured as it is in their print edition. With that being said in the latter case you should consider your advert a print advertisement only as in reality that’s what it is.
When determining your ROI, return on investment, for your print advertising expenditures it’s essential to be able to track the results. Sure this get’s a little challenging at times depending on the ad. However it’s only wise to implement an effective tracking program to measure as best you can the true value your getting on your print advertising investment. A good starting place might be to measure:
- The traffic that the ad brought to your business.
- The portion of that traffic that you converted into customers or serious prospects.
- The amount of visibility your company received to build brand recognition.
- The return on investment of the expense of the campaign versus the results.
Adding a code to your print ads will also help with tracking response rates especially if it’s a coupon or offer that requires the code for the offer to be redeemed. Insure that your business trains everyone to simply ask your customers and clients how they heard about you and begin documenting the source they respond with. It’s a simple yet effective way to take the guessing out of your print advertising ROI.
It’s 2013 and Small Businesses need to embrace the reality that print advertising is only one of many cost effective ways to advertise and promote their local business.In my evaluation there’s a lot of wasteful spending that gets thrown into the bucket of print advertising. In all honesty most print advertising executives are never going to tell you, “Hey you’re spending too much money with us, why don’t you diversify your advertising a bit.”
If they had your best interest in mind they would obviously tell you this. That scenario is not likely to happen. For that type of unbiased business advertising & marketing advice you’ll need to turn to professionals like myself who have more of an interest in seeing your Business succeed with it’s advertising and marketing efforts than watching a commissions check grow.
If you’ve got questions in regards to Taking A Closer Look At Your ROI For Print Advertising or are interested in exploring the many ways that Georgia Web Development can help your Business be more successful then I’d love to hear from you!
– Mark D. Hulett is an accomplished website developer and website designer at Georgia Web Development. His experience and working knowledge of small business website development & website design spans more than a decade.