Over the years I have pondered this saying which has been attributed to several industrialists including Sam Wanamaker and Lord Hanson, half of my advertising expenditure is wasted, the pity is I don’t know which half. This saying has influenced how I buy advertising. I don’t!
As a small business owner, one tends to be at the mercy of snake oil salesmen who claim this virtue and that wonder for the advertising outlet they represent. It is very easy to plonk one’s money on the table in the hope that the phone would ring, or these days that the response form would be filled. Big fat hope! It is almost impossible for a small business owner to advertise with any degree of success. Marketing yes! Advertising no!
Every time I have got a call from an advertising pedlar, I have responded with this proposal: I am sure you are confident of your service, unfortunately, I have no idea it would work, in fact I am almost sure it wouldn’t and it would be a waste of my money. So here is the deal, as the marginal cost of production to you is almost zero, you and I know that if this thing is successful, I would definitely want more of it hence, let me have it at zero cost for the first 6 months, if it works, everybody will be happy and I’ll sign up for the second 6 months of the year at double price, so in effect I would have paid full price for the deal.
Only one advertising house has accepted such an offer, and guess what, 6 months of adverting failed to yield a single lead.
The moral of the story is that advertising for a small business, is a mugs game, there is only one winner, and it’s not the small business.
This is where Social Media comes in. By the way, in no way is this suggested as all things to all men, but the various tools of social media afford the entrepreneur and the business owner the opportunity to engage with their potential clients on a cost effective and time efficient manner.
What are your views on Social Media and its effectiveness? Please do share with us.
This is a guest post by Ade Oduyemi, Inheritance Planning Manager at Maximum Inheritance Specialists, http://www.maximum-inheritance.co.uk .They provide wills, trusts and power of attorney for the entrepreneur.