Thursday, November 29, 2007

Pointers To Avoid Common Advertising Mistakes - Part I

Advertising isn't hard to do. You prepare an advertisement or write a classified ad to sell your product or generate interest to send people more information. But the way most people make mistakes is either by their inability to write effective ad copy and by sending it to be published in the wrong publication. Here are some pointers to follow:

Writing Effective Copy

Never try to sell anything costing more than $5 in a small display ad or a classified ad. First of all, you don't have enough room to tell people everything they need to know to entice them to order.

Instead, you need to employ the "Two-Step" method of advertising. Request the reader to send you $1 or 4 first-class postage stamps for more information. When they respond, you will send them a brochure, flyer, order form and cover letter so they can place an order for the real product.

Now that pricing is out of the way lets talk about writing your ad copy. The best way to learn how is to read the ads other people have written. Don't copy them word-for-word, but use them as a guide to write your own ads. Once you get the hang of it, you'll be writing effective ad copy just as well as the pros.

Advertising in the Right Publication

Although this may sound a little silly and you think it is only common sense to know this - people will often overlook this fact when choosing the publication they will be advertising in. Instead, they will look for the lowest price for the amount of circulation they receive. Unfortunately, this does not work out. Even though you need to look for good deals that make it easy on your pocketbook, you will be throwing money away if you don't pre-qualify the publication you choose.

One way of pre-qualifying the publication is to send for a sample copy. Most publishers will send them to you free of charge for the asking. If you don't know of any mail order publications, just write to Glenn Bridgeman, PO Box 10150, Terra Bella CA 93270 or William Lee, Rt 1, Box 10790, Madisonville TN 37354 and ask them to send you some. (Be sure to enclose $1 or 4 first-class postage stamps in with your request to offset postage costs.) If you tell them you are new to mail order and are interested in publications to advertise in, you certainly will find the $1 you spent is well worth the effort because both of these publishers are very reputable, honest and helpful.

Study the publication to see what other people are advertising and how they are advertising it. Contact some of the people who sell items similar to your own with the hope of networking with them. You would be surprised how much free publicity you can get just from corresponding, calling and networking with others.

Once you locate a publication you want to advertise in, give it a try for 3 months. If you don't get any response or only a few orders, try another publication. There are millions of them and eventually you will hit the right target market that will be interested in what you have to sell.

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