Advertise with us

Enjoying this blog? Check out the rest of the Business Channel Subscribe to this Feed

Home Biz Notes

How To Get The Most Out of Your Advertising Flyers - Basic Test Marketing

by Yvonne Russell on September 17th, 2007

Yvonne Russell
Are you making the most of your advertising budget? Let’s look at using basic test marketing to get the most out of advertising flyers.

What Is Test Marketing?
John Wanamaker, one of America’s first department store owners, famously said “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted. The trouble is, I don’t know which half.” The good news is with test marketing, you don’t need to waste half your advertising budget.

Test marketing tracks and measures which advertising channels are most effective for you. Are you reaching your customers? Is this converting to sales? We’ll use a home based quilting business as an example. These tips are applicable to any home based business with walk in customers.

Advertising Flyer Distribution & Customer Response
You’ve designed a great flyer or brochure featuring a 25% of all quilting books sale and some of your key quilting products. You print 1000 flyers and distribute them far and wide. Trade is brisk.

Have You Measured the Response?
If you distributed 1000 flyers randomly, odds are you have little or no idea how effective the flyer was. How many people who came to your home based store did so -

  • — as a result of the flyer (whether new customers or returning customers)?
  • — in response to the items featured on the flyer?
  • — in response to the 25% off quilting book sale?
  • — because they were passing and noticed your store sign or the sale sign?
  • — because a friend told them about your store?

Go Back To Basics - Who Is Your Target Audience?
Before designing and printing flyers, think about what you want to know e.g. How do customers hear about you? Which suburbs do your customers come from? Which are the major age groups?

Tips for Testing The Response For Your Next Advertising Flyer Campaign
Instead of printing 1000 flyers all exactly the same, use colors, codes or dates to differentiate which specific target groups they go to. Test marketing yields a lot of useful and often surprising information, often without you having to ask.

Use different color flyers or codes for -

  • — different target groups e.g. craft fair, letter box drops, trade display etc.
  • — letter box drops to different suburbs (or groups of suburbs if you want to split them further)
  • — inserts in specific magazines or newspapers

Give customers a reason to bring the advertising flyer with them
— Free gift or entry in a lucky draw on presentation of the flyer - a good way to collect names and addresses to build a mailing list too.

  • — Special price or sale (e.g. 25% of quilting books) when they present the flyer
  • — Special offer e.g. buy one item and get one at half price

Ask if they have a flyer. If they don’t, that’s useful to know too. If a new customer, it’s a chance to find out how they heard about you.

What Does Your Test Marketing Information Tell You?
During the advertising flyer campaign, keep presented flyers, and discreetly make notes, including the number of customers. The color or code on the flyer will yield information about which target groups responded best. It also tells you the percentage of customers who came as a direct result of your advertising flyer campaign.

Let’s Talk - What Have You Found Works Best For You?
Use the information to refine future campaigns and business decisions. Testing marketing can help you know where to best use your advertising dollars. I’d love to hear any tips and strategies that have worked for you.

Yvonne Russell is a freelance writer who blogs at Grow Your Writing Business and Small Biz Mentor. She has run a number of small businesses including home businesses. She is also the director of The People People, a small training and development business.

Tags: , , grow+your+writing+business, , , , , Yvonne+Russell

POSTED IN: Business Blogging, Promotion

13 opinions for How To Get The Most Out of Your Advertising Flyers - Basic Test Marketing

  • Yvonne Russell
    Sep 17, 2007 at 3:29 am

    Thanks Mary Emma. I hope these tips will be useful for home business owners.

  • Mary Emma
    Sep 17, 2007 at 3:34 am

    Thanks, Yvonne, for being a guest blogger at Home Biz Notes. You have so many helpful tips here. I’d never realized you could learn so much from business flyers if you gave some forethought and planning when producing and distributing them.

  • GROW YOUR WRITING BUSINESS » Blog Archive » Do You Advertise Your Writing Services? Basic Test Marketing For Writers
    Sep 17, 2007 at 4:04 am

    […] guest post this month at Home Biz Notes is about basic test marketing. Check it out and find out how to use test marketing strategies. There are useful tips which can be easily adapted for growing your writing […]

  • Yvonne Russell
    Sep 17, 2007 at 4:26 am

    Test marketing is actually a very interesting thing to do. If you are passionate about growing your business, regular test marketing can yield a wealth of information.

    The basic principles can be easily transferred to any advertising media and any business.

    I’d love to hear your readers’ tips for how they go about knowing where best to spend their advertising dollars, and any advertising tips that have worked for them.

  • Laura
    Sep 17, 2007 at 6:36 am

    Good post! You have some very interesting tips here.

  • Yvonne Russell
    Sep 17, 2007 at 6:54 am

    Thanks for stopping by, Laura.

    Variations of test marketing can also be used by writers or other freelancers, including online.

    Testing and measuring the response to a special offer or service could be useful, for example.

  • Rico
    Sep 17, 2007 at 6:18 pm

    Who would’ve thought that analytics can also be “old-school”? :)

  • Yvonne Russell
    Sep 17, 2007 at 10:27 pm

    Hi Rico - That’s the great thing about test marketing. :)

    There are a huge range of approaches or variations to suit different situations and budgets.

    Even the back to basics non tech methods can be used to give valuable information. Sometimes that’s perfect for home businesses with a limited marketing budgets.

  • Calvin Warr
    Sep 21, 2007 at 5:25 pm

    Great post! Sometimes, we don’t do these things simply because it appears to be more effort than its worth. But I guess when the business starts to grow, such habits become vital to continued success.

  • Yvonne Russell
    Sep 23, 2007 at 5:53 am

    Thanks Calvin. Yes, this is fairly labor intensive, but for a small business, it’s a good way to dip the toe into the waters for test marketing. It also teaches you a lot about fine tuning things.

    I know you are an experienced marketer, and I totally agree that good habits are, as you say, vital to continued success.

    Thanks for taking the time to stop by and comment.

  • Yvonne Russell Joins Home Biz Notes
    Oct 1, 2007 at 2:02 am

    […] How to Get the Most Out of Your Advertising Flyers -  Basic Test Marketing   […]

  • Brad Hartmaier
    Feb 23, 2008 at 7:17 pm

    Thank you for the tips on creating a marketing flyer. I especially liked the tip about giving people a reason to take their flyer with them.


  • Yvonne Russell
    Feb 23, 2008 at 8:27 pm

    Pleased you found the article usefukl Brad. Marketing flyers can be very effective as a tool for not only spreading the word, but for gathering information too.

Have an opinion? Leave a comment:



Now that gas prices are lower, how has this affected your home business?

Subscribe By Email