Advertising doesn’t have to be expensive. It doesn’t have to be high tech either. You could say the only thing you need is a willingness to do it. There’s different things a small business can do to get the most bang for their buck.
The best thing about one of these tactics is that like direct mail, you might be the only business using it.
One of the oldest advertising methods is the use of handbills or flyers. They date back to the invention of printing.
As soon as we figured out how to put ink on paper there was someone trying to use it to sell something.
Handbills and flyers are an inexpensive medium that’s very underused.
What’s The Big Deal?
The reason I’m talking about handbills is because the other day when I came home I found one on my door.
It wasn’t the first time I received one of them, but this time they simplicity and effectiveness struck me.
And I wanted to share, let me explain.
Before I go further, I’m in no way endorsing anyone who’s listed on this flyer. I’m not getting any sort of compensation for showing their flyer. I’ve never used their services. I don’t even know who these people are.
Back To Basics
Advertising doesn’t get any simpler than this flyer. It also doesn’t get any cheaper. You take a regular sheet of paper, divide it into 5-10 equal parts and round up a couple of other business owners. Done.
It’s as close to “set it and forget it” as you can get. The hardest part is collecting the money to get them printed.
So how can you put together one of these flyers for your business?
The first thing is find complementary, non-competing businesses to share the space with. If you’re not sure what I mean, I’ll elaborate.
Let’s say you’re in the pool building business. Your partners would be a pool cleaner, landscaper, patio furniture store and patio builder. The list can go on and on.
They key is to think of business who are looking for the same type of customer. In the pool builder example, you’re looking for home owners who take pride in their homes.
So, you could even include a contractor, interior designer and seller of high-end furniture.
Think of all the business someone would need or use before you build their pool and after you build their pool.
A hidden benefit is that businesses on the flyer can agree to share the names of anyone who buys with each other. Why would you want to do this?
Because a buyer is a buyer is a buyer. Rarely are people done buying after they make the first purchase.
If I have a pool built I’m going to need someone to clean it. It makes sense for the pool builder to refer the guys from the flyer. And if the pool builder did a good job building the pool anyone he refers is a lock to win the business.
Why? Because the trust he’s built up flows to anyone he refers.
Why It Works
This simple tactic is so effective because the marketing message ALWAYS gets delivered. What do I mean? I mean that these flyers are usually left tucked into your door. When you get home the first thing you notice is something sticking out of your door as you walk up. If you do manage to miss it, it falls to the floor when you open the door.
What happens next is you pick it up and open it to see what’s it all about. BAMM, message sent, message received! You can’t guarantee this will happen with email, billboards or even TV.
Words Still Matter
I know a sale isn’t guaranteed just because someone reads your flyer. But if you have a marketing message that goes beyond name, address and phone number you could use it to generate some leads.
Returning to the pool builder example. Besides displaying his name and contact information he can offer a free buying guide via free recorded message. The guide can help customers figure out the best pool shape for the dimensions of their back-yard.
Walk them through how to design their own pool if they want. And even give them a list of hidden budget busting problems that can pop up during construction.
Online In The Offline World
These flyers are like AdWords for the real world. You have a limited number of spaces and the amount of space you get is dictated by how much you want to spend.
Your message must be enticing enough to get people to “click” on your ad, or in this case call you for more information or to buy. But, for a fraction of what you would spend doing the real AdWords.
You Have To Kiss A Lot Of Frogs
Advertising your business doesn’t have to be hard or expensive. This handbill strategy is perfect for a business with a limited budget or the big guy who wants to add to what they’re already doing.
Not every tactic is going to work, but if you have a willingness to try new things you will find some winners.
Hopefully this tactic will be one of them.
Author: Victor Urbina
To read Victor’s previous columns, click HERE.