Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Classified Ads - Building Traffic Part 4 - E-Business Success Blueprint Workshop - Part 24

Free online classified ads   Previous article

Free online classified ads are one great way of getting visibility. Online classified sites are ad directories where the content of the ad is provided by the advertiser. By visiting free classified sites, you can submit your free ads and check out other ads of your competitors as well.

The great thing about online advertising is it is multidimensional. You reach people from all walks of life. In addition, it is free and if you find that it isn’t working out, you can just drop it at no cost.  
How do classified ads work?  

You might have already experienced that you can place ads free or paid and have no response at all. This is nothing unusual or new. Newbie marketers quite often have no basic understanding how advertising works and they don’t realize that with small classified ads, you only have a very short time to catch the attention of the surfer so you have to make those moments count.  

People typically make purchasing decisions based on their emotions. In fact, we periodically use associative memory, meaning that if our mind is expecting to see something, it will see it sometimes even those things do not truly exist. Our mind creates it. This is where we come in as advertisers.

Our goal is to determine so called “hot buttons” which we can press and our visitors will then use their emotions to make their purchasing decisions. You have to make your ads stand out because individuals typically read more than one ad at a time. So, if you don’t have a catchy or memorable headline, you won’t typically catch the visitor’s attention. In fact, your classified ad should be some memorable that readers, have to glance at the rest of your article for fear that they’ll miss something important.   

Here is a list of certain facts which affect our buying decisions:  

Shopping triggers

  1. A person needs to see specific ad up to 7 times to feel familiar with it and make a buying decision. Therefore, if your ad has only been seen once, you shouldn’t expect anyone to buy from you. They’ll need to see it six more times to feel comfortable enough to take advantage of your offer. In next lessons I will explain how to capture your visitor’s email address.  
  2. We are more likely to buy an item if the product or service has been endorsed by some known personality.  
  3. People enjoy thinking about themselves most of the time. They think about problems they have and things they want. Therefore, successful ads list benefits. They tell them what the product will do for them and what they will lose if they don’t have it.  
  4. You should only target one issue at a time. If you have a store with vitamins, don’t say Come and get the vitamins from me. They are the best vitamins in the world. Instead ask them in one ad if they have cholesterol problem and in the other heart condition and take them to specific page which specifically addresses these problems.  
  5. Everyone wants to get things cheaper than they are being sold for. By offering discounts for your first buying customers, or free delivery or free samples.  
  6. We quite often make our decision based on direct embedded commands in the surrounding environment. When you see a green light you proceed forward. When you see a red light you stop. When someone looks at you and smiles you will smile back. To take advantage of this, use commands in your ad. Say something like Click Here or Select One Item from the list. People will subconsciously follow your commands.  
  7. People like to see other people who are enthusiastic and happy. Express happiness in your ad and enthusiasm. Demonstrate how the product will bring them happiness. 
  8. The net feels very anonymous. It is harder to gain somebody’s trust on the net than in real life. Always display a phone number in the ad that customers can call with any questions if they want.  
  9. People quickly detect that somebody wants to sell them something and they build instant resistance to it. They don’t want to feel like they’re being pressured. Therefore, do not make your ad sound pushy.  
  10. Most people are visual. They see patterns and if your ad stands out they will notice it first. Use indentation in the body of your ad.  e.g. First Line  Second Line  Third Line.  Your ad will look differently than any other one. It won’t follow the pattern of majority of the ads.  
  11. Utilize a clever mixture of upper and lower case letters to differentiate from the crowed. A sample ad might read: IMPORTANT, This offer is only for our first time customers.  
  12. We are used to certain words or expressions such as warning, caution announcement, or excitement. Such words if written with upper case letters will have double impact. E.g. WARNING, CONGRATULATIONS, DON’T DO THAT, STOP, ANNOUNCING  
Things to avoid  

  1. Don’t use misleading headlines. You might get a visitor to your site but you will make him/her only angry and you will guarantee that they won’t use your site in the future. E.g. Your account has been deleted will not generate sale.  
  2.  Don’t exaggerate in your ads. This will usually have an adverse effect on customers.  
  3. Don’t list features of your product or service. Instead list benefits.  
  4. Don’t use your name in the heading unless you are known brand name in the niche area.  
  5. Don’t use italics in your ad heading. They are harder to read and will likely be skipped.  
  6. Don’t type everything with upper case letters. This is considered as shouting on the internet.  
  7. Don’t use your real email address when placing your ad. Free classified sites are frequently spidered by unethical email harvesters who sell them later to naive marketers. Use some temporary email address.  
As an exercise write 10 different ads promoting your business which are focusing on different factors influencing our buying decision 

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Bogdan Fiedur Copyright 1998 - 2013 - All rights reserved . 

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