Types of Advertisement for a Small Business

Businesses, small or big alike rely on marketing and advertisements in order to make their products or services known to the public, especially their target market.

Greater profits result from adequate information and familiarization to the business, which may be done effectively through advertising. With this, the following is a simple guide to the types of advertisement a small business may utilize.

Advertising is one of the most important parts of any business plan, especially when starting a small business. Even if your products are top of the line or the service you intend to provide is exceptional, a lack of public knowledge of the business you offer will result in less desirable consequences to your business. The better informed and familiarized the people to the products or services offered by a company, the greater the chance that these people will patronize the business of such company. Advertising, therefore, is a key element to the success of every small business.

There are different but equally effective ways a small business may use as a form of advertisement. The various types of advertisement cater to different marketing and advertising needs of any business, hence must be utilized accordingly in order to achieve the best possible results. These include offline and online forms of advertisements. Offline advertisements are those traditionally utilized for information dissemination, such as business cards, flyers, posters, and print ads. Online advertisements are relatively new and a fast way to spread information about the business establishment.

Business Cards, Flyers, and Posters

The simplest but effective way to advertise a small business is to hand out business cards, flyers, and posters. This may be done in public places, especially in areas where the target consumers or clients may likely pass. These include bus and train stations, supermarkets and schools. You could ask your staff to distribute these materials for you. Also, you could hire teenagers or people in your neighborhood who are looking to earn extra cash to disseminate the posters and flyers for you.

The business card could also be distributed even during casual encounters. Attending community meetings or simply meeting someone along the way is a perfect opportunity to hand out business cards. This is a direct and more personal way to inform the public of the products or services a small business offers.

The cost of this type of marketing is relatively lower than any form of advertising. A computer, a printer, paper, and lots of creative ideas are the only things needed to utilize these advertising materials. You don’t need to be a professional graphic artist to make business cards, flyers, and posters. A number of software programs are available that features templates and do-it-yourself advertisings materials that are readily available in computer stores. Examples of these include Windows Publisher and Adobe Photoshop. All you have to do is to fill up information regarding your business and pick a template that suits your taste.

On the other hand, if you don’t want to do these advertising materials yourself, you could hire a professional graphic artist to do these for you. Just inform them of what your business is like and your target market. These graphic artists will do these materials for you. The cost is a little higher than if you make these advertising materials yourself, but this could save you time which you could use in attending to your business.

Print Advertisements

This type of advertisement may have a relatively higher cost than the abovementioned form of advertisement, but is equally effective and not labor-intensive. The information about the products or services offered by the business firm reaches a greater number of people at one time than distributing flyers and business cards.

  • Newspaper - An example of this type of advertisement is newspaper ads. Newspapers generally reserve spaces for business advertisements. Depending on your advertising budget and target market, you could select what type of newspaper to advertise in. Newspapers of wider circulation will cost more but will reach more people. On the other hand, local and community newspapers have limited circulation. It will cost less but will reach a relatively smaller number of people. Choose which type of newspaper you are going to advertise in, according to your budget and advertising needs.  
  • Magazine - Another example of print advertisement is magazine ad. Some people prefer reading a magazine due to its entertainment value, at the same time, it provides information on various types of things. To advertise in magazines, it is advisable to choose the magazine, which is more or less related to your product. There are different types of magazines. Some are related to gardening or to entertainment. If your product is related to gardening, why would you advertise in a food magazine? It is possible but not advisable. Stick to your target market by advertising in magazines, which your target consumers or patrons will most likely read. In this way, your target market will have direct access to the information regarding your product.  
  • Directory - The next type of print advertisement is a phone directory ad. Listing in phone directories is a simple yet effective way to advertise a product or type of service. Phone companies distribute these directories to every home, which subscribed to their company. Therefore, you are virtually advertising to each and every home which has a telephone. Accordingly, people will tend to look at their telephone directories when looking for a particular product or service. Your product or the service you provide will be conveniently advertised with a little effort on your part.

Billboards and Mobile Advertisements

  • Billboards - Billboards are a great way to advertise your product or service. This type of advertisement costs more or less as much as print advertisements, but this provides convenience and accessibility. Billboards are located usually on roadsides or buildings. Everyone with a vehicle or pedestrians passing by will see the billboards and become familiarized with your product or service. Normally you will notice two types of billboards, print and digital. If you look towards the future then probably all the print billboards will be replaced with digital ones as you can notice that on Times Square. Print billboards typically depend on location, size, material, facing, etc. Billboard advertising rate varies from $1000 - $3000 per. The cost of advertising on a digital billboard runs from $1,200 to $10,000 a month, and the cost of creating the ads is not that expensive.
  • Mobile Advertising - Mobile advertisements are terrific innovations in the advertising world. This type of advertisement moves from one place to another, reaching more people at a time. Accordingly, taxi companies, public buses, and even trains offer advertising packages for business establishments. These advertisements are either painted on the side of the vehicle or posted inside these public transports. As most people commute to work or to school, they will be familiarized with the product or service conveniently. For example, ad space on a bus can vary from $20 to $2500 per week depending on the place and size. The interior ads are the lowest priced and the side walls are the most expensive ones.
  • Mobile Billboard Trucks - Aside from public transportations, there are companies that provide advertising services through their trucks loaded with billboards. These trucks are designed for advertising purposes and will roam around the area where you want your product or service to be advertised. This cost is higher than other mobile advertisements but it will advertise in the area of your target market directly, making it more convenient and your marketing information accessible.
  • Sky Ads - Another innovative type of mobile advertisement is through sky ads. These include gliders and small airplanes to hold banners while flying at high altitudes. They will definitely catch attention for your product or the services you provide. This is an effective and creative way to advertise.

Radio and Television Advertisement

Who does not watch television or listen to the radio? These two media are vital sources of information and entertainment for the past few decades. Every day, people from all walks of life and all ages watch television or listen to the radio. Radios and televisions influence viewers and listeners in their lifestyles and choices. These are, therefore, great avenues to introduce your business and inform the consumers about the wonders of your products or services.

Radio advertising cost varies from $2 to $1000 per 60 spots in low to high market. Advertising in radio or television will give good exposure to your business. People watch television or listen to the radio regularly. Accordingly, advertising during the right timeslot where your target consumers usually tune in will make your ad more effective.

Accordingly, this may entail a large amount of capital but these will surely make a difference for your business. The length or of advertisement and the frequency it is shown or aired determines the amount you have to pay the television network or radio station. It is advisable to determine whether you have the capacity to advertise locally or nationally. Hiring advertising companies to do your infomercials will also entail a cost but will make your advertisement competitive and will more likely be visually stimulating and appealing to viewers and listeners. With these, your product or the services you provide will instantly become a household name. A radio commercial production can cost you from $400 to $1200, depending on the quality.

Sponsorships and Business Conventions

Small business establishments may also participate in business conventions and sponsorship packages as types of advertisements. By participating in business conventions, people will be familiarized with the kinds of products and services offered by small businesses. It can also acquire credibility as a genuine business establishment having been accepted to participate in such convention. During these conventions, your company can also distribute materials with your company logo printed on them. Everybody loves free stuff, so it is advisable to disseminate ball pens, t-shirts, mugs, and any other things that may or may not be related to your business that could carry your company logo.

On the other hand, accepting sponsorship packages is a type of advertisement wherein the company agrees to shell out funds for a particular event, in exchange for billing in the posters and invitations to the said event. Usually, school or community events avail of this type of advertisement. Schools and community events organizers will provide sponsorship packages a small company can choose from.

Online Advertising

 Cyberspace is one of the most influential avenues for communication today. People around the world utilize the World Wide Web to conduct their personal or business affairs. The exchange of goods and ideas on a global scale was facilitated by the emergence of this type of technology. Its reach is undeniably far and wide. Each and every home demands access to the Internet as a necessity.

With the extent of its influence and reach, online advertisement is definitely a good marketing strategy. Accordingly, there are several effective ways to advertise online.

  • Website - The first and most basic online advertisement is creating your own website. In here, you could provide information about the company, the products or services you offer, and a listing of contact information. This will provide an overall view of your business, which not only for marketing purposes but also to give your firm credibility and legitimacy. Creating your own website is not hard work, but will entail a lot of creativity. If you want to make your own website, software programs are available that provide templates and guides on how to set up a website. Some programs can also be downloaded online, which contains templates and instructions that can easily be followed. Meanwhile, if you are not technologically savvy, professional website creators can be hired by your company, either for initial setup or on a retainer basis. This may add extra cost to your advertising budget but this will definitely make your website more professional and creative, rendering it more effective as a means of marketing your product or service.
  • Banner Ads - Another type of online advertising is through banner ads or pay per impression banners. These can be purchased and set up online. There are online companies that specialize in pay per impression banners and they can be readily accessed online.
  • Pay Per Click - The next type of online advertising is the text link ads or pay per click. It is an online advertising device, in which the advertiser pays the host of the website if a person clicks or chooses to view the link while browsing the host’s site. As for the pay-per-impression banners, there are companies online that specialize in making this type of online advertisement.
  • Blogs - Last but not the least in online advertising is through blogs. These are online entries of opinions and descriptions about anything under the sun, created by people who users or have experiences in particular topics. People will likely read blogs to get more opinions and information on a specific subject. This can therefore be used as a form of advertising the products and services you offer or an informal survey of the efficacy of your business.

1 Comment

  • Franklin Appiah said on June 28, 2009
    You are ABSOLUTELY RIGHT.. Thanks


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