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Getting A Big Bang For Your Buck With Classified AdsViews: 262
Feb 01, 2006 3:56 amGetting A Big Bang For Your Buck With Classified Ads#

Cathy Qazalbash
Classified ads are small ads with a big impact. They are usually about 5-6 lines maximum in length and the cheapest ads you can place. However when used correctly they can give you a big "Bang for your buck."

How can you ensure your ads are making an impact?

Structuring your classified ad
Targeting your audience
Presell not direct selling
Advertising in the right places
In order to make a maximum impact on your trader you need to structure your ad correctly. A classified ad is divided into 3 parts.

Headline: the single most important part of your classified ad.
This must be an attention grabber. Your ad will be competing with many and it is critical for your success to “stand out from the crowd.” Your reader will be skimming through the classifieds looking only at the headlines so yours must reach out and grab his attention. For example

Lose Weight for the Last Time!
Lose 20lb In 10 days now!


Which one of these headlines would catch your eye?

2. Body of the ad: remember just 3-4 lines to play with. Enough to put your 2 most important benefits. Don’t try to sell you do not have room. Instead create curiosity and the need to click through for more information with a couple of irresistible benefits.

Positive call for action-click here –go here ect.
Target your audience correctly. Unless you point your advertising to your specific market your ads will be wasted . For example if you are selling golf clubs your ads should be directed to publications and related websites where people who link golf will go.



Presell do not sell. You simply do not have room in your classified ad to sell your product/service. Besides this, people reading classified ads will not be reading to buy but rather “just browsing.” How often have you had to tell an over zealous sales person in a store that you are “Just looking?’ sometimes you get put off and leave the store when you are bothered to much. Nobody likes being sold to. A better way is to excite curiosity with a couple of irresistible benefits. Compel your reader to click through for more information and lead them into your persuasive sales page, where you will really do the selling.

Classified ads work best when used in these places.



Publications
Related websites
Pay-Per-Click advertising
Compressed into Google adwords


Direct marketing is when you advertise directly to your market, as in publications and related websites. Publications should be highly targeted to your special market. Classifieds can be a good way to test response of the newsletter/ezine. You cannot expect much response as classified ads are usually at the bottom of the publication and will get less exposure

Related websites: make sure these are complimentary to your business and are not competitors. For instance if you are selling golf clubs, do not advertise on a website that is also selling golf clubs, but rather advertise with one that is selling a related product that your market will be interestedin like golf balls.

Some Pay-Per-Clicks can be advertised using small classifieds. Google ads are small classifieds.



Testing with classified ads:

Classified ads are very useful for testing. The classic way to do this is with split testing. You take 2 of your best classified ads and run them in the same publication at the same time and track the results. the one that does best is your winner. .Run them for at least 3 weeks to see realistic results.

Classified ads are the base ad that you can model all your ads on. When you have seen which ad will be the best expand it with more benefits to make it a Top Sponsored ad. Then expand it some more to make a full blown Solo ad.

Classified ads are indeed an underrated offline marketing tool. When used correctly they can be the little ad with the big bang for your buck.


Article written by Cathy Qazalbash
Freelance writer/copywriter
http://advertise-your-business.com

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