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21 June 2013

Why Local Business Advertising Fails

Reject the notion of the “blow-the-budget, try-it-all” advertising blitz and ditch the search for the new, bright and shiny marketing gimmick. It doesn’t exist.

As much as I would like to be on the selling end of your expensive endeavor, I don’t want to listen to you complain in a month about how it didn’t work for you. 

A few weeks ago, I went on a rant about consistency in advertising. In case you missed it, here it is:The Number One Secret to the Success of Your Local Business

I want you to think of advertising consistency like you would a new prescription after a trip to the doctor. Sometimes, results are seen quickly, but other prescriptions may take weeks or even months to be fully effective. Just as you wouldn’t quit taking a medication because you didn’t see immediate results, you shouldn’t end your advertising campaign because customers aren’t swarming your business the first week your ads are live.

Here’s why you must stay consistent with your advertising strategy:

Consistency is measurable.

It’s hard for small business owners to see past their limited budgets, but you have to think long-term when advertising. A long-term campaign is the only way to accurately measure whether your advertising campaign is effective, especially with online ads. The online medium you use should track each time your ad is viewed, clicked, and should calculate the click-through rate (CTR).

Consistency gives you direction.

When a local business doesn’t get quick results, they typically throw in the towel and profess that advertising doesn’t work. The truth is that the message is usually a failure — not the advertising medium.  If you’re measuring results, you can see this and tweak your message. The beauty of digital is that you have the flexibility to make changes at a lower cost than traditional media.

I don’t know if I am violating some advertising HIPPA policy, but I have a client in the European car repair business that started with an offer to try his service. We learned that the area he is marketing in is not coupon-driven. He then changed his messaging to “Looking For An Alternative to Foreign Car Dealership Repair?” and the leads started generating for him.

He would have never figured this out without measuring his results, and I’m very proud to say thatBubbleLife Connect (our portal for local business advertising) came in handy and salvaged his campaign instead of throwing his marketing dollars to the wind.

The ease of online advertising allows for quick changes and is affordable enough to continue the campaign until it’s messaging is a perfect fit for your business. Protect your investment and measure the results.

Consistency makes you popular.

It’s called mind share and the only way to get it is with a consistent strategy. You must target potential clients on a regular basis. They’ll see your ads repeatedly, and when they’re in the market for your services, your business will be at the top of their minds.

Think about a plumber. I don’t need one today, but the toilet might not flush tomorrow. Truthfully, toilets aren’t something I want to deal with, so the ads that I have seen consistently — over and over and over on various websites — will win my business.

Consistency pays off.

By staying consistent with your advertising strategy, you’ll not only continue to reach new customers, but you’ll even draw in old customers who just need to be reminded you’re still around.

Most local business advertising fails because owners are looking for a “quick fix.” Rather than searching for immediate results, you need to regularly work your customer pipeline.

Stay consistent, stay patient and the results will speak for themselves.

If you’re looking for affordable, consistent advertising and operate in a area, consider us. At the time of this writing, we have a $99 promotion in most of our neighborhoods. I believe local news and local business go hand in hand!

Saffie is the founder of BubbleLife and previously served as the Operations Director of both iThink, Inc. and and played an instrumental role in the sale of these companies to Volaris Communications.