Advertise My Business – How Consumers View Businesses Who Advertise During Tough Times

As a small business owner, you are also a consumer, so you’ll be able to completely relate to how advertising your business affects consumers. Whether you are advertising at the current moment or not, you’re sending out messages to your prospects and customers about your company, some of which you may not want to be sending. It is important to understand what your customers think of your business so when they talk about your company, they can send out positive messages that will help your company prosper. If you’re wondering, “Should I advertise my business?”, consider how it will make you look to your prospects for years to come.

When consumers think about businesses who advertise during tough economic times, two things come to mind.

1. They perceive your business to be financially stable. Consumers know it costs you money to advertise and they put value on those companies who have the ability and budget to do so. They understand that although advertising your business is a necessity, it requires extra money to facilitate. Knowing that you have the finances to put money into your business tells them you’re not on the verge of going out of business.

Think of it like this; aren’t you less likely to spend your money with a company you fear will be closing soon? Well, your prospects and customers feel the same way. They wonder about warranties, returns, service or maintenance they may need down the road, upgrading or adding to their previous purchases. They may even wonder how good your customer service is. If you’re not advertising, they may just assume you can’t afford to pay your employees, which leads to unhappy employees who do not take care of customers very well. If you wouldn’t invest your own money into a company as such, you can’t expect your prospects to do it either.

Bottom line, you don’t want to give the consumers any reasons to think you’re hurting for business. More business is always better but tell them you’re doing well with what you’ve got.

2. Seeing more small businesses advertising provides consumers with comfort that prosperity is possible and still happening. With all the boohoo about how down the economy is, it’s a breath of fresh air for consumers to hear of small businesses that are still around. They respect a business owner who can still create a presence for their business even with all the economic problems that so many people are complaining about. Advertising your business says, “If I don’t like the way something is, I’ll do what I need to change it rather than complain about it.”

It seems that advertising your company builds character, respect, and superiority as if “only the strong survive”. Wouldn’t you agree that when you see a small business advertisement, it makes you feel good, like things are moving along? It is the idea of possibilities that excites society and advertising helps create those ideas.

It is a proven fact that businesses who continue to advertise through hard economic times beat out their competition, even decades down the road. I strongly feel it’s not only because they are putting themselves out there but because of how well consumers respond to their efforts. The next time you ask yourself, “Should I advertise my business?”, the answer will be VERY clear to see.

Selling a Business – Tips to Advertise a Business For Sale Successfully

Anticipate a buyer search criteria and categorise your business accordingly

It is important to file your business for sale advertisement in such a way that it grabs the attention of the maximum number of relevant business buyers. The more types you file your business under, the better your exposure will be.

If you are selling a pub that serves food, for instance, it is worth filing the business under not just ‘pubs’, but also ‘pubs and hotel property’, ‘restaurants’, ‘taverns’ and ‘bars’, as your likely purchasers will be searching for a business for sale under all or some of these categories.

It is also worth including key information such as the postcode, street or town where your business is located in your description text, so that any business buyer using the keyword search facility will find your business in their search results.

Honest figures will help your business to sell

In order to sell your business successfully, it is vital that you give your potential buyers a sensible indication of the kind of living they can expect to earn from the business. New business buyers aren’t just relocating from a street or village that they are familiar with; in most cases they are also walking away from the financial security of a monthly paycheck to become their own employers. This constitutes a daunting step into the unknown for a lot of people, and the more data you can reassure them with in your advertisement, the better your response levels will be.

You can include the turnover, gross profit and/or net profit figures on a weekly, monthly or daily basis with an advertisement, and it’s advisable to include at least one of these figures as a bare minimum if you can. Other figures that are worth mentioning in your advertisement are footfall / shop frontage (if it is a retail business), traffic levels (if it is an online business), demographics on the local economy (if it is a service-led business) and lease length / rent review dates (if it is a commercial property).

Your figures may be highly confidential, in which case it is perfectly acceptable to write ‘turnover and profit figures available on request’; The most important thing to do is to acknowledge the figures in your advertisement; if you don’t, it can look suspicious or unprofessional, and it can stop potential buyers from taking you seriously and enquiring about your business for sale.

Pricing your business for sale :

To get your business to sell quickly, it is important to price your business sensibly. An overly ambitious asking price might feel like a safe place to negotiate down from, but if you price your business too high, your potential buyers might not come across your advertisement in their search, as it will fall outside of their price range. If you price the business at a value lower than you are prepared to accept, you could find yourself inundated with buyers who you are not prepared to sell to, wasting your time and theirs. Remember that the price at which your business is sold is ultimately dictated by your acceptance – or refusal – of an offer; at the initial stages, your priority is to generate as much valid interest as you possibly can in your business for sale.

Take a look at comparable businesses for sale on websites listing businesses for sale and pick an asking price that is in line with what looks to be current market values. If you are unsure of what your business is worth, you can get a free business valuation from business agents or websites advertising businesses for sale.

Choose business-related photos that help your business to sell

Your existing promotional material may be remarkably effective at bringing customers through your doors, but you are dealing with a very different target market when you are selling a business. The business itself is now the product, and your ‘customers’ in this case will be looking for signs of prosperity, security and success. For instance, a photo taken inside your premises at peak times showing a busy shop floor will give potential purchasers more incentive to enquire than a beautifully-crafted logo on its own. Try to take photos that show off the passing trade and ‘bustle’ of your business.

Choose the right place to advertise your business for sale

Advertising your business for sale online is a great way to get maximum exposure. The price to advertise online is also less expensive than on print newspapers and magazines.

Advertising a Business Online at No Cost

There is a lot that can be cone without any expense when advertising a business online.

Perhaps one of the main thoughts that puts many of us off advertising a business online is the expense associated with it. We are all aware how expensive even short TV ads are. Placing even a small ad in a local paper can become costly if ran over a long period of time too. In the online world there is a variety of ways to advertise. Some ads pop up on our screens, others are apparent on most Web sites, some you read, some you watch and listen to, and some take you to another site. In this article only free forms of advertising will be touched upon.

As can be expected in the physical world, as well as online, certain ads are more powerful, than others. The reasons for these are in some instances patently clear, and sometimes not so obvious. When an online business is started with a limited budget, it is natural to begin with fairly basic forms of advertising. The simplest way to do so is to include a four to six line ad for your business in an e-mail signature. You can choose to include this in every e-mail you send. To increase its effectiveness you could offer an incentive, such as a free e-book or a video to encourage visitors to go to your site.

Another simple way is to include a Tell-A-Friend feature on your Web site. If your content is viewed as good by others, they will happily recommend it onwards. Those who have been recommended a certain Web site, blog, or other, are less hesitant to visit them. A bribe, i.e. an incentive, giving them something for free gives a good reason to do so.

Classified Ads are another way to attract traffic. Visitors to these sites are already looking for what you are offering, and in many cases they are ready to buy. There are many of these sites and it can become rather tedious to keep placing ads on them, as they expire after a few days. In addition you also want your ad to appear as high up the list as possible. It is a good idea to get used to classified ads, as they do produce traffic. However due to their time-consuming nature, there are other forms of free advertising which are more effective with regards to the effort invested in them.

SEO or Search Engine Optimization is what you should logically pour a lot of hours into. When done properly and consistently you can end up on the first page of Google without any financial investment. If you consider the fact that 80% of people do not look further than the first page of their search results, this is definitely worth investing in. Free traffic is a goldmine. Apart from that, SEO is a component of most other forms of advertising. You should even consider looking into SEO before deciding how or what to name your business. Getting familiar with SEO sooner than later in your online marketing career will pay dividends.

Article marketing is a good way forward especially if you have some information to share and know how to put this down on paper in an interesting and clear manner. The more intriguing this piece of writing is, the more likely it is that it will be added as content to various Web sites. Greater exposure can be achieved by article syndication, i.e. posting an article to several article marketing sites.

Press Relapses are a great way to promote your Web site, and so increase traffic to it. Writing them will take some practice and getting used to if this is something you have not done before. It is worth the effort, as press releases can remain on the Internet for years.

At the time of writing this, videos are all the rage. Again they are a great off-page SEO technique. Uploading a video to YouTube with your URL gives you a link pointing to your Web site from a page rank nine site. Admittedly it can take a few hours to get to grips with how to go about making them and getting hold of all the required software, graphics, etc. After the production of a couple of videos it becomes a lot easier. The only remaining challenge is content. Aim to make it as high in quality as you can and include valuable information in order to attract traffic to your Web site.

Reality style videos need not take long to make, however you will need a video camera. If you are new to this, practise until you feel comfortable and appear natural to the rest of the world. It is well worth remembering that first impressions have a long-lasting effect. A messy background, a dishevelled look, unsavoury use of any language, unclear audio, and other distractions should all be avoided. A good video can get lots of views, and this can happen in a short period of time. The faster you establish a good reputation in your niche, the more frequently your video will get viewed.

Social Networking is another area of online advertising that has climbed to new heights in no time at all. We have all heard of Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace. There are countless others. Signing up with them enables you to have your URL in your profile.

The main reason to have a Web site is to promote a business be it a product/s, a service, or both. Like customers in a shop, visitors are the lifeblood of an online business. In order for the visitors to find our virtual shop we need to take steps to make it easier for them. This is where advertising comes in. To get organic traffic, SEO needs to be fully employed and put in place – the best possible way forward. In addition there are several other free ways of advertising a business online that will keep your Web site busy with visitors, and potential customers.

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