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Has anyone had success with advertising their e-commerce site in niche magazines?
I am having a debate with one of the owners regarding where to best place advertising monies. I say advertising online would be better since the business is only online at this point. He wants to advertise in niche magazines.
But, there is no reason not to do both.
In one of the industries I'm involved in, the companies that advertise in magazines and newspapers tend to be the ones that go bust! You can keep spending more and more on adverts and have no real idea of what effect its having, and the sales rep will keep saying you keep just need to be in a few more editions to get the right effect and it will all turn round etc.. Generally, it won't.
Unless you have a very special offer or a totally unique product that you can put at low rate in a niche magazine and can afford for it to generate *no* sales, then stick to spending your advertising "budget" online for now until you can justify spending money on unmeasurable "branding"..
If you can't track it in some fashion don't do it.
As part of the other discussion someone posted the following figures and so I've pasted them in below, I think the original source is an advert but please remember the source here is just another forum discussion:
Some Of The Most Reliable, 3rd Party Sources Available
According to a Forrester Research Media Field Study, getting a loyal audience in the first place is best done by Search Engine Placement.
According to Georgia Tech's Graphics, Visualization And Usability survey, 84.8% of Internet users use search engines to find websites.
In a recent ActivMedia Research study, Search Engine Positioning was ranked #1 website promotional method used by ecommerce sites.
Search engines create more awareness about websites than all advertising combined ó including banners, newspapers, TV and radio (as reported by IMT Strategies, a division of the Meta Group).
And look what was found in a recent issue of Target Marketing Magazine...
Top Ways Websites Are Discovered"
When millions of online advertisements are flooding into the ad market, it is practically very difficult to choose a cost effective way for an advertisement. You shall agree that Plenty of cost to the advertisement is going waste might be due to wrong media selection or many different factors involving it. Itís really sad.
Hence implementing a traditional method of advertisement is not bad as it's still most cost effective way to promote your business.
Usually magazine has a shelf life at least for 15 days to 30 days, the readers come back and read it again and again, each time they read your advertisement are exposed to them.
Overall I think that the idea of advertising in niche magazines might be cost effective way to promote your business.
I'm not saying I will never try print ads again, but this is just one bad experience.
For determining the actual cost for your target market you should implement this formula to avoid wastage on ad cost.
CPM= (cost of advertisement*1000) / total circulation
Thereafter you can asses the further cost factor which can apply for the target market circulation as below;
CPM-TM = (cost of advertisement*1000) / interacting target market
CPM- cost per thousand, TM- trade market.
Just my 2 cents:
1. Make sure you can afford the ads even if it pulled zero (yes - zero) sales. Most ad reps hint "2 million readers, if 1% are interested, then it's 20,000 people, if 0.1% then it's 2000 people." Well, most likely it'll be much less than that)
2. Negotiate and negotiate hard - ask for remnant space. Most mags will have them, and it's considerably cheaper. Never settle for rate card rates.
Good luck & let us know how it goes!
I like to buy the smallest ads possible in as many different relevant, targeted publications as I can find, rather than big ads in fewer places. I call it the "Little Bombs" campaign, and it evolved out of the limitations of having to make the most of a tiny, tight ad budget. I see no need to change that strategy now by going for full page ads or whatever. If your audience is into what you offer, I figure they'll take notice, regardless of size.
If not, maybe you need a more appealing product... Ideally your product line should be self-evident and pretty much sell itself, so your job is only to bring it to people's attention and let fate take care of the rest. It's up to you to make as creative and eye-catching an ad as possible within the size constraints, that's all; it's your creative challenge. I also negotiate better on-page positioning, and a lower rate, by using full advance payment for one year as the bargaining chip.
Ad people try to tell me repetition is the key. Whatever. If their circulation is by subscription to the same base every month, I only hit once and maybe I might do it again one year later. I'm off to find virgin territory, fresh new eyeballs. I think I smell a rat when they feed me that old saw about repetition -- consider the source.
My product sells well at the mid to high range too, so I also advertise in trade publications aimed at regular retailers. Particularly effective was this twist: instead of another print ad on one of the magazine's pages, I printed 25,000 glossy cardstock full-color cards and had them blown in. Customers get to take away & stash the card for later reference.
For contact info, all my ads list only the website name, plus some kind of 'check us out' call to action. The ads don't show a phone number, so I don't get any phone calls requesting a paper catalogue (I don't have them anymore, and good riddance).
All in all, I believe that for me, print advertising has been quite effective.