jump to example.com
newsletter linked in

It’s a lot harder to get attention to your business today

marketingThirty-two referrals in a year. That’s all a new client of ours was able to get last year out of an annual Yellow Pages budget pushing $30,000.

Those are pretty pricey referrals – right at $1,000 per.

But then again, you have to be in the phone book, right?

Well, yeah. Maybe not with ads costing $2,500 a month, but you need to be there. And you also need to be on TV and radio, in the newspaper, and on the Internet and social media.

And it wouldn’t hurt to have placards in front yards, and rack cards in grocery stores and restaurants.

Wait, so you’re telling us that we have to do all of that to get our word out?

Yeah.

How can we possibly do all of that on any kind of budget?

You’ve just got to be smarter.

Back in the good old days, roughly 20 years ago or so, you only needed to worry about TV, radio, the newspaper and the Yellow Pages. There was the old saying about how you knew half your advertising was working, you just didn’t know which half, but generally speaking, things worked the way they were supposed to.

Cable TV started changing things even before the arrival of the Internet. Going back to the 1970s and 1980s, cable was HBO, ESPN and TBS in addition to the local channels. Which is to say, it wasn’t something that you had to think about at all in terms of your advertising budget. But now, there are literally hundreds of channels vying for and getting our attention, and ratings for the broadcast networks are declining every year as ratings for niche networks inch upward, meaning that you have to be able to read Nielsens to be assured that you’re going to get the bang for your buck that you need out of your TV advertising dollars.

Radio has seen a similar transformation – with the rise first of satellite radio, and later Internet-based services like Slacker and Pandora. Spending money with the local AM or FM station just doesn’t do what it used to do anymore.

Neither does spending money with the local paper. The days when everybody read the paper, watched the local TV news and listened to the local pop station are over and done with. Plenty of people still read the paper and watch local TV and listen to local radio, but just as many, or more, get their information and entertainment from cable, from satellite, from the Internet, that you literally miss out on reaching them if you don’t figure out a strategy for making the connections that you need to make.

And then there’s the phone book. I can’t think of the last time that I used one. There’s not even one in the house here, and it’s been years since I remember having one to thumb through.

If you’re spending all your money on traditional advertising sources – Yellow Pages, local TV, local radio, local newspapers – you’re finding that it’s a lot harder to get attention to your business. You need to diversify your marketing budgets.

Chris Graham is the president and CEO of Augusta Free Press LLC, a full-service web- and graphic-design and marketing firm based in Waynesboro, Va. More online at www.AFPBusiness.com.

 
Top Stories
a

Staunton man charged with murder in death of infant son

A Staunton man has been charged with murder in the death of his one-month-old son.

A new day dawns in Waynesboro

Does the sun seem a little brighter in Waynesboro today? Yes, it does! The flowers are brighter, perkier. The birds are singing beautiful melodies.

Area Fishburne cadets earn top Honors at JROTC Summer Leadership Camp

Cadets from Fishburne Military School in Waynesboro took center stage this weekend during JROTC 4th Brigade's Cadet Leadership Challenge at Fort Pickett.

Celebrate America’s Birthday with lowest July 4th gas prices since 2005

Mid-Atlantic drivers will see Stars and Stripes this weekend, as well as the lowest gas prices for Independence Day since 2005.

Mary Baldwin appoints two new deans: New university structure emerges

Mary Baldwin College transitions to Mary Baldwin University, under which a new academic structure with four colleges is emerging.

There is a next for Bob McDonnell

So you’re Bob McDonnell, and you woke up Monday morning as you did every morning the past 21 months, facing the possibility of two years in federal prison.

New firearms laws go into effect in Virginia July 1

Two new laws that impact Virginia concealed handgun permit holders and those engaging in private firearms transactions at gun shows go into effect July 1.

Podcast: Tim Kaine for veep?

AFP editor Chris Graham discusses the talk about U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine being on the veep short list for presumptive Democratic Party presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.

Augusta County Library partnership wins national award

Augusta County Library received a 2016 Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties (NACo) for its Read & Feed program.

Parking fines in Staunton go up effective July 1

Effective July 1, fines for violations of certain parking restrictions will increase in the City of Staunton.

 
Discussion
 
Recent News

AFP Business

AFP: The Magazine

In 2015, Augusta Free Press brought back our print magazine under a new name, Augusta Free Press: The Magazine.
.
 

Advertise on AFP

Get information on AFP readership and advertising online with us.
.
 

AFP Classes

Augusta Free Press offers a series classes on website design, marketing strategy, social media, event planning and more.
.
 

AFP Web Design

Get your business online for as little as $1,299. We take care of all facets of web design – visual design, layout design and content development.
.
 

AFP Graphic Design

Whether you need a fresh business card design, rack card, ad, flyer or full magazine design, we can help with all your graphic-design needs.
.

AFP Marketing/PR

Augusta Free Press manages advertising campaigns for small- and medium-sized businesses across Virginia. You don’t need to hire a full-time marketing coordinator. Bring the experience of the Augusta Free Press team to work for you – for a fraction of the cost.
.
 

AFP Search Engine Optimization

The prettiest website in the world is like a tree falling in the forest with no one there to hear it. If your website hasn’t been search engine optimized, no one is going to see it or hear it – and it’s not going to work for you.

 

AFP Video/Audio

Web videos, TV and radio commercials, DVDs – Augusta Free Press LLC has you covered when it comes to video and audio production.
.
 

AFP Book Publishing

Augusta Free Press Publishing has produced books in-house and assisted more than 17 authors with book publishing and production services since 2003. Whether you need a cover, layout, or need help from start to finish, we are here to help!
.