“Outperforming your conditions and prospering in a troubled economy,” is an ideal solution for a publisher looking to make an impact in the community and tap new revenue sources. In the dozen or so presentations I have made in four different states, in every case the host publication has written thousands of dollars of business.
The goal of the seminar is to impress upon attendees that marketing and advertising is critical to their survival and success. Evidence includes consumer response to current economic conditions and studies conducted during other troubled periods which stress the importance of advertising, plus independent advertising research.
High fuel prices, the real estate crisis and the Wall Street “meltdown” have chilled consumer confidence and forever altered consumer behavior. One third of Americans say their number one priority is to reduce spending, 58% say they’re putting needs ahead of wants. Fifty percent say they’ve become more practical.
The consumer is boss. Money is tight, businesses need to work smarter and harder to attract customers. If dining is down 40 percent then Mr. Restaurant needs to get out there and tell his story to get what’s left.
Consumers want information like they never wanted it before, 83 percent do research before a purchase. Advertising is the best way to communicate.
Marketing your business
Everything a business does is marketing, from answering the phone to shoveling their sidewalk. Various methods of community relations and communication are discussed, concluding with the need to advertise.
Studies dating back to 1923 concur that those business which maintained aggressive advertising practices prospered and continue to grow long after the recessionary period ended. A recession is an opportunity to gain market share.
In a poll for the American Marketing Assn., 60% of executive respondents said that cutting back or halting marketing initiatives was the biggest mistake a business could make
I provide a take-home checklist with headings of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, suggesting they have every member of their business complete it independently and discuss it.
Opportunity for local businesses
In all this gloom there’s hope for local businesses. People are driving less (45%), combining shopping trips (42%) and shopping closer to home (44%). Sound like the time to promote neighborhood ad pages to create a destination? (Research is updated monthly.).
While consumers say price is important, value and service are major considerations. Eighty-four percent of people changed stores because of the way they were treated, according to one recent survey.
Local businesses have the opportunity to differentiate themselves from their larger competitors by offering personalized service.
Is advertising everything it’s cracked up to be?
Starts out with a quiz on well-known slogans to prove the point.
What drives advertising success?
Share of Voice
Product purchase cycle
What works in advertising?
Research supports case for frequency.
Dispelling the myths
Information consumers want in advertising.
What local businesses should be saying in their advertising.
How do you know a good sales rep when you see one?
Advantages and disadvantages of various media.
Attendance has ranged from 30 to 75 people per session and generally half of them are not regular advertisers. Anyone attending is pre-qualified. By their presence they’re likely troubled by their conditions and looking for options. A wide variety of professions have been represented, from tradesmen, at-home entrepreneurs and retailers to private schools, and corporate law firms and health care facilities.
The session offers the opportunity to explain how advertising works and how it will benefit their business, and it comes from an outside gray haired” expert” with a PowerPoint presentation filled with facts and evidence. While I am a sponsored speaker, the content of the presentation and comments I make give me credibility. (Please see the link above to the Independent Free Papers of America web site where President Doug Fabian discusses the benefits his 221,000 circulation community news company realized.)
In most cases the newspaper has been the sole sponsor but in others they have co-sponsored with the local Chamber of Commerce or college business studies department. The majority have also been light breakfast sessions starting at 8 or 8:30 a.m.
Contact John C. Peterson, The Peterson Group, 860-447-9198