We would like to
thank the local libraries, schools, and universities for recommending students
to visit us when doing research on any of our information topics.
Advertising and promoting your business is expensive, so it's important to get the most from your advertising budget. That means understanding how to get the most from your ad agency or graphic designer.
Let's start by understanding the difference between agencies and designers. Typically, a designer will work on specific projects under your direction. For example, you may request an ad design for your Halloween event, and give the designer your copy (the text) and the party theme. You are responsible for booking the ad with the newspaper, getting flyers printed, having posters made, etc.
An ad agency plays a more active role in planning the promotion of your events. They can work with you to plan your ad schedule, suggest the right mix of promotional tools to reach your audience, help you evaluate the effectiveness of your promotions, and negotiate ad rates and printing rates on your behalf. They can also help with choosing promotional themes and writing ad copy. Of course, you will pay more for these additional services - but you may actually save money by letting your agency do your negotiations and booking.
Whether you are working with a designer or a full-service agency, it pays to plan ahead. If you can plan your advertising a year in advance you should be able to lock in much better ad rates. Leaving a couple of extra weeks when printing flyers will save you "rush printing" charges. And giving your designer extra lead time will almost certainly get you a better looking result!
A typical small agency might require final "concept and copy" at least a week in advance of newspaper deadlines, four weeks in advance of distribution for printed materials like flyers (to avoid rush charges), and six to eight weeks in advance for complicated projects (such as die-cut and folded invitations). Many business owners don't understand why final copy is required so far in advance? they ask the designer to do a design, and add the text later. But in a good design, text and typography are very important to the look of the piece. So if you want your advertising to look good, plan on providing the copy when you give the job to the designer.
The above lead times allow time for the client to proof the final artwork, and make minor corrections, based on a single design. But when working with a new designer, or when promoting an important event, you may want to see several design concepts, and possibly several versions of the artwork. This can add one to two weeks to the schedule (more for very complex ads), and of course will cost more than a single design.
When ordering the work, make sure the designer understands your market and the image you are going for. For example, you may look at a design and say, "That's not cool enough for our market." Another business manager may look at the same ad and say, "Whoa, that's way too weird for our customers." Show your designer ads you like (and don't like) to help them understand the look you want for your business.
But what if you don't like the designs your agency produces?
Well, you obviously shouldn't run an ad that you feel really damages your image, doesn't convey your message, or isn't what you requested. But at the same time, avoid the temptation to micro-manage the design. You are paying your designer for their professional skills; their judgment is probably better than yours when it comes to layout, typefaces, color choices, etc. Also, if designers feel that the work they do for you is going to be extensively changed, they won't give you their best efforts.
So find an agency or designer whose work you like, and trust their design sense. If you find you consistently don't like the work they're producing, talk to them about the problem, and if necessary find another design firm. But don't spend your time trying to "fix" the designs.
It's also very important that one person from your business deals with the design firm, and has final authority on all design and copy decisions (many agencies will insist on this). If a designer is getting conflicting input from several people, they can't do a good job for you. If you need to, talk about the design with everyone at your business who is involved in the decision? but select one person to convey your feedback to the design firm. (A good design firm can schedule meetings with clients where everyone can contribute ideas and feedback - as long as one person represents the client when it comes to final input and decisions.) Note that this can be complicated when co-op advertisers or sponsors are involved. Typically the person or company being invoiced provides the input, unless they specifically designate a different person.
So far we've talked about printed advertising and promotion, but for most businesses, the internet has also become an important promotional tool. Print design, web design, and e-mail promotions require different skills and tools, so you may use different firms for each. However, there are some advantages if you can find a single firm to handle all your needs. The design firm can make sure that your print and web communications project a consistent image. And you will only need to provide your event information and promotional goals to one firm, who can then make sure that the print ads are placed, the website is updated, and the e-mail invitations are sent. Some firms can also handle other design tasks, including menus, signs, and promotional items.
Typically, in order to get this range of services, you'll need to work with a mid-size agency or design firm. There are advantages and disadvantages to choosing large or small agencies:
An individual designer (free-lancer) or very small agency can give you personal attention and often lower rates. But you will need to work around their schedule if they are out sick or on vacation, and you will need to find a new designer if they change jobs. Individuals and very small agencies probably cannot provide a complete package of design services.
Mid-size firms give your somewhat less individual attention, and may charge a higher rate than free-lancers. But on the plus side, they can provide a broader range of services, and they have several designers on staff so they can accommodate your needs even if someone is out, or if you need a lot of work done for a key event.
Large firms can offer a full range of services and a large staff to meet all your needs. Unless you are a large account, you will probably get little personal attention. (In fact, in a large firm, the smaller accounts are often given to junior designers and trainees.)
So, how should you choose?
Above all, find a firm whose work you like! Ask for samples and references, and if possible meet with the designers before making a selection.
Decide if you want to hire a design firm (and manage the ad planning and placement yourself) or an ad agency to provide more assistance with your promotional planning (most ad agencies will also provide "design only" packages if you prefer).
Find a firm that is large enough to meet your needs, but small enough to care about your business. We typically find that local, neighborhood businesses are best served by free-lance designers or very small firms; regional or metro-market businesses do well with mid-size firms, and major national companies get the best results from large firms (and can afford to pay for them).
Talk to the firm about how you will measure the effectiveness of your advertising. It's a good idea to try different types of advertising over time to see what works best for you. Consider coupons and special offers to measure how many people are responding to your ads.
Remember that even the best advertising campaign gets stale over time. Plan for (and budget for) occasional reworking you advertising. Most designers respond very well to an opportunity to do something new for a client, and you will get the best results from both your design firm and your customers if you freshen your advertising every 6-12 months.
Thanks to LunaGraphica Inc (http://www.lunagraphica.com) for input and suggestions on this article! Lunagraphica is a boutique advertising and design agency specializing in the arts, entertainment and youth markets.
Bob Nicholson / WYGK Consulting provides business, technology and strategic consulting for small businesses, internet start-ups and entrepreneurs.
Five Keys To Achieving Positive Return On Advertising Spend With Facebook
Achieving positive return on advertising spend (ROAS) is a key objective for many Facebook and direct response advertisers. Sustaining positive ROAS with a large media spend is not an easy feat to accomplish, but it is possible with the right approach.
The Advertising Apocalypse Has Been Postponed
Back in August, advertising stocks Omnicom Group (OMC) and Interpublic Group (IPG) got whacked after WPP Group (WPPGY), the world's largest ad agency, slashed its revenue target citing a slowdown in spending by consumer companies. At the time ...
How LG Works Advertising Into Smart TVs
Thanks to its smart TVs, LG Electronics controls a channel that can bring the granularity of digital advertising into the world of connected TV. But LG is a consumer electronics manufacturer, not an advertising company, and in recent years it has ...
Charleston Gazette-Mail (blog)
Interims: Tourism to unveil new advertising strategy
Charleston Gazette-Mail (blog)
Ruby also told members of the committees on Government Organization and Government Operations that Tourism will also unveil a new cooperative advertising program at the conference, to be held Oct. 29-31 at the Mountaineer Racetrack and Casino in ...
Google is looking to wedge into TV advertising by displacing ...
Google is looking to wedge into the TV advertising business by displacing Comcast's ad technology. The company has signed on the likes of CBS and ...
Mobile Marketing Watch
Time Inc., Google to Launch New Innovative Native Video Advertising Tool
Mobile Marketing Watch
As demand for digital video content continues to grow, Time Inc. has announced the launch of Adapt Video, a proprietary video advertising unit created by the company in partnership with Google. We're told that Adapt leverages DoubleClick's native ...
Pharmaceutical advertising can empower patients
Autumn is flu season and that means it is high season for pharmacies selling over-the-counter cold and flu remedies. Those who aren't reminded by their own running noses, are sure to be alerted to these types of pharmaceutical drugs by advertisements ...
Missouri Honor Medalist Jack Smith contributed jingles to advertising
After retiring in 1994, Smith returned to the Missouri School of Journalism as a broadcast advertising instructor. Since his retirement, he's been inducted into the American Advertising Federation's Hall of Fame and granted dozens of honors, including ...
Press Release: Columbia Marketing Group: A New Advertising Agency for Mid-Missouri
Columbia Business Times
As a full-service advertising agency, CMG will offer clients a range of creative services (including branding, content marketing, custom publishing, display advertising, event planning, and custom photography) as well as media placement, strategic ...
News & Observer (blog)
Should NC double what the Lottery may spend on ads?
News & Observer (blog)
Current law caps advertising spending at 1 percent of the lottery's annual revenue, a restriction favored by lottery critics who worry that heavy advertising could contribute to gambling addictions. A bill passed by the Joint Legislative Oversight ...
ADVERTISING RELATED ARTICLES:
Successful Print Advertising Designs
Do you often see print advertisements outdoors, as much as you see Web advertisements when you surf through the Web? I'm pretty sure that you have entirely different views and reactions upon seeing and actually taking notice to these two different kinds of advertising. The differences may vary in their use of color, typefaces, and space.
5 Reasons Why Headlines Are Crucial To Your Website's Success
Without a powerful headline, your message stands little chance of being noticed in an increasingly competitive marketplace. If your headline doesn't capture attention and pull prospects into your sales copy, than your marketing effort is a total waste of energy and resources.
How You Measure Yourself Is How You Motivate Yourself
One of the keys to strong positive mental attitude is what you compare your personal performance to. Do you compare your sales results to the top producer in your industry? Do you compare your basketball playing ability to Michael Jordan? Do you compare your last presentation to a speech delivered by Ronald Reagan or JFK? Or do you compare your results today, to those you had yesterday? Sports, sales, and the media teach us to compare our success against that of others, living or dead.
Change, or Reinforce?
Do you know about the distinction - and it's a useful one - between communication that tries to reinforce and communication that tries to get change? If you follow politics you'll already be familiar with this idea: Incumbents send messages that reinforce existing voter behavior, while challengers call for changes. Any thoughtful marketing communication (and political communication is marketing communication) will be strongly influenced by this distinction, which affects not only the content, but also the presentation, and perhaps even the medium.
Electronic Display Signs
Electronic display signs are used nowadays in great extent to display important information instantly all over the world, which uses LED technology, which stands for light- emitting diodes. These are widely used in the worlds of commerce, government and even non-profit organizations.
Sex in Advertising: Does it Sell?
We're surrounded by advertisements that desperately compete for our attention. Everywhere we look, we find ourselves inevitably drawn to images of scantily clad attractive men and women that are supposed to somehow inspire us to purchase products they endorse.
Advertising Headlines and How to Write Them
1. Attract prospects with your headline Use your headline as a flag to attract readers who are interested in your product.
Using Flyers to Advertise Your Online Business
Using flyers is one commonly overlooked method of advertising offline. Flyers are extremely easy to create.
The Forgotten Advertising Tip
I'm sure while you have seen many tips on advertising, many that talk about testing and tracking your ads, I'm sure that this one important tip is rarely mentioned: Running more than one ad at a time isn't the greatest idea. While it seems like a good idea to spend your monthly advertising budget all at once at the first of the month, is it really gaining you the best exposure? Even if you are running ads on various websites and networks, there is a pretty good chance many of those that see your ad on one site are going to see them on another.
7 Unique Ways To Get FREE Advertising
1. Give Testimonials When you purchase a product or service and it exceeds your expectations e-mail the business a testimonial.
Advertising - Does it Matter?
When advertising, you need to sell your opportunity, your products and yourself. What sets you apart from everyone else? Maybe you produce a newsletter with a specific content where there is a demand from a particular group of people, or you promote your own special product that no one have not yet seen.
Is Your Yellow Pages Ad Putting Cash in Your Pocket... or Sucking Cash Out?
Any idea? It's a question that more than a few Yellow Page advertisers ponder. If you are currently spending money every month to run an ad in your local directory, you don't want to wrestle with that question.
Secrets to Profitable Mail Order Products
The most profitable mail order products are simple 3-to-5 page informational reports such as this one. Once you've got your act together, these 3-page reports can be produced for $10 per hundred or less, and sold for at least $200 per hundred.
Make Your Business Cards Work
What's the cheapest, most under-used marketing tool you have?The answer's no secret ..
Print Advertising: Knowing What To Put In Your Ads
So you've decided to run a print ad in your local newspaper. The paper may have even told you they could produce the artwork for you if you just tell them what should be in the ad.
5 Tips for Hot Yellow Pages Ads
Yellow Pages advertising is one of the most popular forms of advertising in the country today. Almost every home in America (96.
6 Ways To Get More Sales From Your Advertisement
To bring great sales success, a great advertising technique is not the only parameter. You must know what it is that your customers are actually buying.
Driving Customers to You - Your Car as a Marketing Vehicle
You can turn your vehicle into a rolling advertisement. Costs start at just a few dollars, and you can put your business name, slogan, phone number and web site URL in front of thousands of potential customers while you are driving along the freeway, stuck in traffic or even while you are parked.
Imprinted Promotional Items - Their Many Marketing Applications
There are many uses for promotional items. This means that they are just not used as freebies for a grand opening special.
Custom LED Display
Custom LED Display, as the name specifies, facilitate control anything with any message that you can think of, from hours of operation to daily specials. These are used by almost all industries like factory, banks, airports, universities, libraries, and many others.
Find used office equipment in Ohio at www.OfficeJax.Has.It
Find the best fleamarkets at www.FleaMarketWorld.Has.It
Find electric powered vehicles at www.NoGas.Drives.It
Find homes for rent
Jim (James) Baughman Hosting Company of Akron, Ohio offers the finest in the CLOUD internet hosting service and solutions at affordable prices. The Hepsia control panel is a superior control panel unlike the old school cpanel you may be familiar with as well as downloadable daily backups, 24 hour tech support response time is less than 30 minutes, php version selection, unlimited bandwidth, are all included at no additional cost.
advertising agency advertising supply and services marketing and advertising internet advertising pay per click advertising newspaper advertising promotion online advertising free advertising business marketing and advertising promotional advertising specialty print advertising banner advertising agency promotional product advertising radio advertising company classified advertising web advertising outdoor advertising ppc advertising advertising agency and services local advertising art layout production service advertising direct internet marketing advertising web site advertising business advertising television advertising jobs advertising services restaurant advertising yellow page advertising agency tv advertising web banner advertising directory advertising services advertising slogan advertising photographer adsense advertising adwords apis cashing billboard advertising advertising balloon pay per click banner advertising gambling online magazine advertising yahoo advertising email advertising free internet advertising internet online marketing advertising business search engine advertising direct mail advertising services advertising design advertising age creative advertising targeted advertising advertising campaign media advertising career free online advertising mobile advertising ogilvy vintage advertising pen internet advertising agency car advertising subliminal advertising idea advertising and marketing employment cheap advertising pen advertising space online advertising company advertising sign career in advertising direct mail advertising small business advertising history of advertising internet marketing online advertising advertising card communication content integrated marketing perspective premium promotion internet banner advertising advertising outdoor billboard affiliate advertising advertising art advertising display advertising product advertising copy advertising affiliate program free web site advertising real estate advertising brand advertising advertising brand communication guerrilla unconventional advertising business internet online internet marketing promotion advertising advertising firm contemporary advertising coroplast akron ohio custom signs and advertising solutions at OfficeJax online flea market