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Often, when businesses experience slow sales and/or other financial concerns, they look to their advertising budget as one of the first areas in which to make cuts. But advertising is a business’s most important link to the consumer – and savvy marketers actually will intensify their advertising efforts when they need to increase sales or meet other critical financial objectives.
Here are ten key reasons why businesses should establish and maintain a well-planned, well-funded, and well-executed advertising program:
1. Advertising creates store traffic. Continuous store traffic is the first step toward increasing sales and expanding your base of shoppers. The more people who come into the store, the more opportunities you have to make sales. A National Retail Federation survey found that for every 100 items shoppers plan to buy, they make 30 unanticipated purchases.
2. Advertising Attracts New Customers. Your market changes constantly. Newcomers to your area mean new customers to reach. People earn more money, which means changes in lifestyles and buying habits. The shopper who wouldn’t consider your business a few years ago may be a prime customer now.
3. Advertising Encourages Repeat Business. Shoppers don’t have the store loyalty they once did. Shoppers have mobility and freedom of choice. You must advertise to keep pace with your competition. The National Retail Federation states: “Mobility and non-loyalty are rampant. Stores must promote to get former customers to return and to seek new ones.”
4. Advertising Generates Continuous Business. Your doors are open. Employees are on the payroll. Even the slowest days produce sales. As long as you’re in business, you’ve got overhead to meet and new people to reach. Advertising can generate traffic now…and in the future.
5. Advertising Is an Investment in Success. Advertising gives you a long-term advantage over competitors who cut back or cancel advertising. A survey of more than 3,000 companies found that advertisers who maintained or expanded advertising over a five-year period saw their sales increase an average of 100 percent, and companies that cut advertising grew at a less than half the rate of those who advertised steadily.
6. Advertising Keeps You in the Competitive Race. There are only so many customers in the market ready to buy at any one time. You have to advertise to keep regular customers and to counterbalance the advertising of your competition. You must advertise to keep or expand your market share or you will lose to more aggressive competitors.
7. Advertising Keeps Your Business Top-of-Mind with Shoppers. Many people postpone buying decisions. They often go from store to store comparing prices, quality and service. Advertising must reach them steadily through the entire decision-making process. Your name must be fresh in their minds when they decide to buy.
8. Advertising Gives Your Business a Successful Image. In a competitive market, rumors and bad news travel fast. Nothing sets the record straight faster than advertising; it tells your customers and competitors that your doors are open and you’re ready for business. Vigorous and positive advertising can bring shoppers into the marketplace, regardless of the economy.
9. Advertising Maintains Morale. Positive advertising boosts morale. It gives your staff strong, additional support. When advertising or promotion is suddenly cut or cancelled, salespeople and employees may become alarmed or demoralized. They may start false rumors in the honest belief that your business is in trouble.
10. Advertising Brings in Big Bucks for Your Business. Advertising works. Businesses that succeed are usually strong, steady advertisers. Look around. You’ll find the most aggressive and consistent advertisers are almost invariably the most successful. Join their ranks by advertising and watch your business grow!