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Print advertising and marketing success

Anyone have any positive history with print advertising? I was thinking of placing some ads in the local free publications, that have info on the city? Any input on print marketing and things that have worked for you?

Anyone have anything to share on marketing in general, I found that once I purchased my Challenger, that learning how to be effective and please customers was the easy part, finding enough customers to be successful was the hard part, I am aware that there are other threads on a general overview of marketing, however would anyone else like to share on specific things that really made a turn around or a high return on investment in the ad department? I consider myself about 9 months in full time after first purchasing my Challenger around 2 years ago. I tried a lot of things that didn't work, and actually tried to sell my Challenger at one time, but I'm glad no one bought it now that I have found some things that did work, and am on my way to reaching the numbers I want. Anyway couple of things that have worked for my business. Priority local listing, that means you pay to be at the top of the search, which will help you get to the top of the organic search below.

Craigslist- It's free, it's good for some calls from time to time, I update every 48 hours.

I have other things that take a certain amount of time to happen such as local search, and I just made a deal with to handle my adword campaign and also bought a top listing on their site, they will basically manage your adword campaign for free, however you have to commit to a large purchase each month to get the free management, you could do it yourself, I just am not gifted or patient in that area, so I am excited to see how that campaign works out, I will update later.

Just did a LivingSocial deal, it is a (Groupon) type site, sold 140 coupons, worked out well for me personally, I'm still new 9 months in, so my book is not always full, this deal helped, especially since this month and next month in particular are slow in my area according to directory search numbers. I think this type of deal would be great for someone brand new that has not really had many customers, the biggest challenge would be getting them to run your ad, but I found it to be worth it, if you do run an ad,it also helped me learn some things about scheduling a large amount of appointments that I had not had to deal with before.

So those are just a couple of things that kind of stick out right now, Anybody want to share some of their specific marketing stories?

P.S. Bought 5 billboards, got one call, spent around 2k and that's was with me asking out of a contract for quite a while, did not work for me personally.

Re: Print advertising and marketing success

Paid advertising is just one of many types of marketing.
Try joining local or area-wide organizations like the Chamber of Commerce, or groups that organize fund raisers for worthy causes. People like to work with people whom they find to be in sync with the things they find important. Offer deals to local real estate offices, and to individual brokers, in exchange for becoming their "go to" guy in the area of carpet cleaning, tile & grout, and whatever other services you offer. Sponsor a Little league team. Of paid advertising, I have found flier inserts in weekly local newspapers to be more effective than buying ad space sporadically. People tend to hang onto fliers, but not to whole newspaper sections. Have you tried It marketing stories and ideas just for this business.

Re: Print advertising and marketing success

You were asking about marketing ideas, I am also new at "marketing challenger business" I have gotten on a local tv station that markets businesses, they give you a 5 min spot to tell about your business and it's marketed with a coupon/voucher deal. I did a $178 value for $89 they got half and I received half. Then I started getting calls, from radio stations to do a "deal" which was good and now getting ready to do a deal on Groupon or LivinSocial whoever puts me first. These deals are good to get my branding out there and get customers that I needed cause my phone wasn't ringing. Do you have a Facebook business page? I have had customers put remarks on my page....and they 'like" your page, they also have advertisements...they do cost. I have found tv and radio is where I am going to put my dollars next year. I had an ad in a local newspaper, cause I brand the ECO friendly part of business, this paper was in the ECO friendly neighborhood, I received only 4 persons from this ad I will not be putting my money in local newspapers, I had ad in there 6 months every 2 weeks. No one reads newspapers anymore. I also put an ad in local magazine (ritzy) magazine didn't get anyone.

Pam N