advertising http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/303/all en-US 8 Creative Ways to Make Money on Super Bowl Sunday http://www.wisebread.com/8-creative-ways-to-make-money-on-super-bowl-sunday <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-creative-ways-to-make-money-on-super-bowl-sunday" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-528278676.jpg" alt="make money this superbowl sunday" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="143" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I don't watch football, I don't like football &mdash; heck, I don't even know how to play football. And I won't apologize for it. So what will I do when the Big Game takes over the first Sunday of February? The best thing I know how &mdash; make money!</p> <p>Join me in exploring these options for lining my pockets with cash this Super Bowl Sunday. You can be all counterculture, too.</p> <h2>1. Provide a Party Setup Service<strong> </strong></h2> <p>While most people plan their own Super Bowl parties, there are some folks out there who'd rather hand over the reins to someone else. I know when I host parties, I'm beat by the time the festivities begin after cleaning and cooking all day. If you've got the skills to set up a memorable get together, advertise those skills locally on social media, the Nextdoor app, or Craigslist. Keep your rates affordable ($20 an hour or less; it's not like you're discovering a cancer vaccine) and factor in the cost of goods if the host doesn't already have things to decorate and set up.</p> <h2>2. Drive for Lyft or Uber<strong> </strong></h2> <p>I've been driving for Uber and Lyft sporadically for about six months, but I always make sure to get on the road during holidays and big events. You might not realize it, but days like Black Friday and Super Bowl Sunday are great opportunities to make more cash than usual because more people are out and about. And since Super Bowl Sunday goes hand-in-hand with drinking too much beer, you can expect that many revelers will need rides to and from their destinations that evening.</p> <h2>3. Tap Into Influencer Marketing Programs<strong> </strong></h2> <p>In addition to blogging about personal finance, I also run a media company wherein I provide PR services to some of my clients. Recently, this has included hiring social media influencers, mainly on Instagram, to wear my clients' products and post about them. The influencers get paid for their posts, and the brand reaches targeted demographics who may have never heard of their products before. For the Super Bowl, these kinds of opportunities exist as well (but not through me; please don't contact me). Kamiu Lee, vice president of business development and strategy at Bloglovin', a leading lifestyle and social discovery platform, explains.</p> <p>&quot;If you have a successful blog or a strong social media following, the Super Bowl is a perfect time to get involved with influencer marketing,&quot; she says. &quot;Brands that don't have that multimillion dollar ad budget still want to be a part of the biggest advertising event of the year, and in order to do so, they're looking to work with influencers who will help them reach their niche target audiences.&quot;</p> <p>Of course, you should have a decent-sized following of at least several thousand to be considered for these kinds of marketing programs.</p> <h2>4. Become a Freelance Delivery Person for a Day<strong> </strong></h2> <p>It should come as no surprise that Super Bowl Sunday is one of the biggest pizza delivery days of the year, along with Halloween, the day before Thanksgiving, New Year's Eve, and New Year's Day. While you won't get any work delivering pies for the likes of the big guys, there are still opportunities available &mdash; especially if you live in cities where third-party delivery services, like&nbsp;<a href="https://www.doordash.com/" target="_blank">DoorDash</a>, are popular.</p> <p>According to a DoorDash representative, Super Bowl Sunday is one of the busier days for delivery on the app.</p> <p>&quot;With orders for buffalo wings increasing by 500% and pizza deliveries by 300%, likely due to all the parties happening at people's homes, anyone can make several deliveries via DoorDash and still be home in time to catch the game,&quot; the company says.</p> <h2>5. Offer Child and Pet Sitting Services<strong> </strong></h2> <p>There are several ways to get in on the lucrative baby and pet sitting game.</p> <p>If you prefer child care, sites like <a href="https://www.urbansitter.com/" target="_blank">UrbanSitter</a>, <a href="https://www.care.com/child-care" target="_blank">Care.com</a>, and <a href="https://www.sittercity.com/" target="_blank">Sittercity</a> can help connect you with parents who'd like to be child-free while they whoop it up for their favorite team. Services like DogVacay and Rover.com, on the other hand, will match you with pet owners who need a helping hand during the game. Personally, I enjoy participating in the latter &mdash; I watch dogs from DogVacay frequently &mdash; and there's really nothing better than getting paid to play with puppies. Completely relaxing and satisfying.</p> <h2>6. Sell Your Winning Team Memorabilia After the Game<strong> </strong></h2> <p>Have special or signed memorabilia from members of the winning team lying around the house? Maximize your earnings by timing the sale of these items for the team's big win. List the memorabilia on eBay and see what you get. If it's a particularly amazing game, you might make out better than you anticipated.</p> <h2>7. Advertise Small-Scale Catering<strong> </strong></h2> <p>Like party planning, many party hosts don't want to deal with cooking all the gameday junk food if they don't have to. One alternative is to order everything in, which can get pricey &mdash; and the quality isn't always top-notch considering that takeout joints are pushing food out the door at warp speed that day.</p> <p>Another alternative, however, is to order food from a small-scale caterer &mdash; and that's where you come in. If you've got skills in the kitchen, offer to prepare a spread for a friend, coworker, or family member's party. Create a menu, prepare the food, deliver and set it up, and take care of cleanup afterward. This scenario lets you enjoy the game (at least a little bit) while making money doing something you love. Again, keep your rates reasonable and research the cost of all ingredients and materials (aluminum trays, etc.) before providing a quote; the idea is to make money, not spend money you don't even have.</p> <h2>8. Clean Homes Before or After the Festivities<strong> </strong></h2> <p>Since Super Bowl Sunday is not a national holiday &mdash; despite what many people might think &mdash; somebody's got to do that evening's or the next day's dirty work. If your schedule accommodates cleaning up after a Super Bowl party, post an ad on Craigslist or Nextdoor offering your services. If you live in a particularly festive area, you're likely to get a bite or two if you keep your prices affordable &mdash; say, no more than $20 an hour.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-creative-ways-to-make-money-on-super-bowl-sunday">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-more-money-as-an-uber-driver">How to Get a High Rating and Make More Money as an Uber Driver</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-earn-extra-money-with-your-car">7 Ways to Earn Extra Money With Your Car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-extra-money-driving-for-uber-or-lyft">How to Earn Extra Money Driving for Uber or Lyft</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-easy-ways-retirees-can-earn-extra-income">9 Easy Ways Retirees Can Earn Extra Income</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-simple-plan-for-saving-up-a-2000-fun-fund">A Simple Plan for Saving Up a $2000 Fun Fund</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income advertising baby-sitting catering cleaning football lyft making money parties pet sitting sports Super Bowl Uber Wed, 25 Jan 2017 16:01:11 +0000 Mikey Rox 1877972 at http://www.wisebread.com How Many of These "Frugal Virtues" Have You Mastered? http://www.wisebread.com/how-many-of-these-frugal-virtues-have-you-mastered <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-many-of-these-frugal-virtues-have-you-mastered" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_smile_thinking_636275722.jpg" alt="Woman mastering several frugal virtues" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>What does it mean to be truly frugal?</p> <p>It's more than just trying to save money. In many ways, being frugal is a lifestyle. It's a virtuous one, too, if you can handle the commitment.</p> <p>To embody a frugal attitude requires you to follow a philosophy based on simplicity, discipline, and an awareness of yourself and the world around you.</p> <p>These are the Frugal Virtues. How many have you mastered?</p> <h2>1. Stifling Instant Gratification</h2> <p>You buy a $5.99 cappuccino because you feel like you need caffeine immediately. You buy a new car because it's shiny and awesome and you just can't wait to have it. You're the first to get the next iPhone, and absolutely must see the next Star Wars sequel on the night it comes out. You're not the type to wait for things. Unfortunately for you, when it comes to spending, patience is a virtue. New products are almost always cheaper if you wait to buy them. And when you wait to buy something, you may realize you don't need the item after all. Spending to satisfy every immediate urge is not part of the path to financial freedom.</p> <h2>2. Seeking Efficiency</h2> <p>To be efficient is to have maximum productivity with the least effort and expense. This concept of efficiency can be applied to a number of areas of personal finance. It could mean driving a car with good fuel mileage, or finding an air conditioning system that gives you the most bang for your buck. It may mean investing your money so that you can generate income with little effort. It could mean spending a small amount of time planning meals for the week, so that you're not wasting time and money later.</p> <h2>3. Looking for Free Stuff</h2> <p>Why pay for something if you can get it for free? One major virtue of frugal people is their ability to find a cost-free option for many items that the rest of us usually pay for. It might be using a coupon for a free meal at a restaurant, checking out books from the library, or grabbing a perfectly good lawn chair that's been placed out in the trash. It means being happy with over-the-air television, and dressing the kids in hand-me-down clothing. Not everything in life can be had for free, but you'd be surprised what you don't need to pay for.</p> <h2>4. Ignoring Advertising</h2> <p>When you watch TV or surf the Internet, you're bombarded with companies trying to get you to part with your money. Marketing folks are experts at manipulating people's emotions, ultimately convincing them that they need a product or service. Frugal people don't get swayed by commercials and banner ads. They don't jump at the latest email promotion or Facebook ad, and they know when something is baloney or not. When they buy things, they are motivated only by their own needs, and aren't swayed by outside influence.</p> <h2>5. Ignoring What's Popular</h2> <p>So everyone you know has a wide selection of clothes from LuLaRoe. They have the newest smartphones. They have awesome sunglasses and eat at the trendiest restaurants. A frugal person ignores this, and avoids making decisions based on what is popular or cool.</p> <h2>6. Avoiding Financial Traps</h2> <p>A financial trap is something that, on the surface, seems like a good deal but is more likely to harm you in the long run. Adjustable rate mortgages, quick payday loans, and even car leases are often considered traps because of their potential to hamstring a person financially if they aren't careful. A frugal person understands the potential pitfalls of every financial decision they make, and stays away from these traps.</p> <h2>7. Embracing the Sharing Economy</h2> <p>Do you and your neighbor both need a high-powered leaf blower? Why not buy one for the two of you and split the cost? Do you have an extra property that you could rent out on Airbnb? Could you save money through a ride-sharing service rather than buying a new car? The sharing economy is based on the notion that we don't need to &quot;own&quot; things as much as have access to them whenever we need them. By reducing what we own, we can save money, clutter, and possibly our sanity.</p> <h2>8. Staying Informed</h2> <p>There are reasons why stock prices go up and down. There are reasons why the cost of goods and services can fluctuate. There are reasons why you're paying more for housing than your parents did. When you understand how markets and the economy work and pay attention to financial news and world events, you're in a position to make smart decisions at every turn. Frugal people know how to read the tea leaves to make the right financial moves. The most frugal people don't just avoid spending; they also make informed choices when it comes to their money.</p> <h2>9. Understanding Value</h2> <p>The concept of value is a bit nebulous, but we've all heard the term &quot;bang for your buck.&quot; In essence, this means getting the most out of every dollar you spend. It doesn't necessarily mean buying the <em>cheapest </em>item every time. Rather, it means avoiding luxury for luxury's sake. And it means taking into account things like overall quality and durability of the items we buy.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tim-lemke">Tim Lemke</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-many-of-these-frugal-virtues-have-you-mastered">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-thinking-skills-frugal-people-should-master">6 Thinking Skills Frugal People Should Master</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-things-football-teaches-us-about-money">9 Things Football Teaches Us About Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/not-the-sort-of-person-who">Not the sort of person who ...</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-best-money-saving-channels-on-youtube">9 Best Money Saving Channels on YouTube</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-money-lessons-we-can-learn-from-jk-rowling">4 Money Lessons We Can Learn From J.K. Rowling</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living advertising advice being frugal financial traps free instant gratification lessons saving sharing economy value virtues Tue, 24 Jan 2017 11:00:11 +0000 Tim Lemke 1871136 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Earn Extra Income With Twitter http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-extra-income-with-twitter <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-earn-extra-income-with-twitter" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_73433583_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="make extra money with twitter" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you spend time on Twitter, you have likely seen promoted posts from celebrities hawking products. Kim Kardashian, the queen of social media, reportedly makes $10,000 a tweet. But even if you are not a celebrity, you can still make plenty of money from social media. If you have a strong following on Twitter, you can turn it into an income stream. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-social-media-can-save-you-money?ref=seealso">6 Ways Social Media Can Save You Money</a>)</p> <h2>What You Need to Make Money</h2> <p>To make money off of Twitter, you need to have an account with a following. The money you can charge is based on a variety of factors. If you have a smaller fan base, but your followers are very engaged with your posts, you can charge more than someone with a large but disconnected following.</p> <p>To be able to charge clients for tweets, you should build an audience of several thousand followers. Build your following by regularly posting content throughout the day. But most importantly, be social. Reply and tweet to other people to start conversations. Participate in Twitter chats to meet new people and get your name out there.</p> <h2>How to Get Connected to Advertisers</h2> <p>There are many different ways to get connected to advertisers, including sites that act as the middleman.</p> <h3>Use PaidPerTweet</h3> <p><a href="http://www.paidpertweet.com">PaidPerTweet </a>connects advertisers with millions of users, from celebrities to bloggers and everyday people. For a fee, advertisers can select a user to issue a tweet from their account. Fees range from $1 a post to $5,000 a post. For example, comedian George Lopez charges $2,000 a tweet. &quot;Camibeth33,&quot; a self-described social media junkie, charges just $1 a tweet to reach her 9,000 followers.</p> <h3>Reach Out to Brands Directly</h3> <p>While PaidPerTweet can connect you to advertisers, there is no guarantee anyone will select you out of the millions of users. That's why it makes sense to skip the intermediary and reach out to brands yourself. For example, if you tweet often about beauty products and style trends, connect with growing brands to see if they'd want to get their products in front of your followers. Many times, a groundswell of normal people can launch a brand more successfully than hiring a celebrity spokesperson, as the regular person has more credibility and authenticity.</p> <h3>Post Great Content and Sit Back</h3> <p>If you post great content regularly and build your audience, chances are, brands will come to you. List in your profile that you are PR friendly, and you will likely receive messages from companies asking you to post reviews of their products in return for free trials or a fee.</p> <h2>Other Ways to Make Money on Twitter</h2> <p>Besides getting paid to tweet, there is another way to make income from your Twitter account. Sign up for affiliate accounts and tweet links to your favorite products.</p> <p>Some sites, like <a href="http://about.shopstyle.com/">Shopstyle</a>, pay you per click. Every time someone clicks on a link you tweet, you get a few cents. On other platforms, like <a href="http://www.amazon.com">Amazon's</a> affiliate program, you get a percentage of whatever purchase users make. If they click on your item, but buy other things as well, you also get a percentage of those sales.</p> <p>When using affiliate links, it's best to focus in on a specific niche, such as fashion, beauty, pet care, or technology. The products you feature should fit the theme of other content you post regularly. So if you post a lot of dog pictures, tweeting out links to kibble brands or grooming tools will be a natural fit.</p> <p>Use affiliate links sparingly so it doesn't become spammy, and post products you have actually used and like. That will be more appealing to your followers and encourage more clicks and purchases.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kat-tretina">Kat Tretina</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-extra-income-with-twitter">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-money-tweeting-0">How to Make Money Tweeting</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-social-media-can-save-you-money">6 Ways Social Media Can Save You Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-more-money-as-an-uber-driver">How to Get a High Rating and Make More Money as an Uber Driver</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-34-smart-ways-to-improve-your-social-media-presence">Flashback Friday: 34 Smart Ways to Improve Your Social Media Presence</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-part-time-jobs-to-do-while-your-kids-are-at-school">17 Part-Time Jobs to Do While Your Kids Are at School</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income Technology advertising paid tweets side hustle side job social media tweets twitter Wed, 02 Nov 2016 09:30:31 +0000 Kat Tretina 1825231 at http://www.wisebread.com The 10 Best Personal Finance Jingles of All Time http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-personal-finance-jingles-of-all-time <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-10-best-personal-finance-jingles-of-all-time" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_watching_tv_000022151312.jpg" alt="Couple remembering best personal finance jingles of all time" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Since the early 1920s, advertising jingles have been coaxing their way into our conscious, and subconscious, minds. Advertising agencies use them as a way to plant a seed, so that when you need a specific product or service, you are instantly reminded of one in particular. They don't even need to be poetic, or artfully crafted. Perhaps the most famous jingle of all time was the one that ended the <em>Mad Men</em> finale recently &mdash; &quot;I'd like to buy the world a Coke.&quot; And who can forget the Oscar Meyer wiener jingle? Even the dull old <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-personal-finance-lessons-women-learn-in-their-20s">world of personal finance</a> can be livened up with a jingle.</p> <p>Here, in no particular order, are 10 of the best personal finance jingles of all time. They are catchy, they are memorable, and while you may have otherwise forgotten about the product or services they recommend, you certainly haven't forgot the tunes!</p> <h2>1. FreeCreditReport.Com</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/tloVHJtrJ_k" width="420" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>You cannot deny the instant hits that were the FreeCreditReport.com jingles. There were nine of them in total, and they garnered millions of hits on YouTube. Chances are, you're already humming the tune after seeing the title.</p> <p>The most memorable of the nine talked about a guy trying to buy a car. It began: &quot;Well I was shopping for a new car, which one's me? A cool convertible or an SUV? Too bad I didn't know my credit was whack, 'cause now I'm driving off the lot in a used sub-compact. F-R-E-E that spells free, credit report dot com baby.&quot;</p> <p>Of course, someone had to pay for those ads, and that money came from signups that were not free at all; you had to pay for a $14.95 per month service after a $1 seven-day trial. The truly free credit reports <a href="https://www.annualcreditreport.com/index.action">AnnualCreditReport.com</a> where you can request one from each of the three major credit-reporting bureaus every year.</p> <h2>2. State Farm</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/OB6r2Wi0E98" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>It's impossible not to start singing &quot;Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there&quot; when you see or hear the words &quot;State Farm.&quot; Specializing in insurance products, the company was founded in 1922 by a retired farmer and insurance salesman called George Jacob Mecherie. The ads and jingles have actually evolved from something quite sappy and sentimental into something more memorable and witty, with the latest being about State Farm insurance agents magically appearing when regular members of the public (played by actors) sing the little ditty. Admit it. You're singing it now.</p> <h2>3. Kars 4 Kids</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/K8UV7SAhvG4" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>Personally, I think this has to be one of the worst jingles ever perpetrated on the American public. It's just awful. It's mundane, it's monotone, it's irritatingly repetitive&hellip;and yet, when you hear it you are humming it for the rest of the day. Of course, it doesn't hurt that this is a product we can all get behind. Instead of just giving your old, broken car to a junkyard, you can donate it to Kars 4 Kids and also get a nice write-off on your taxes. But oh, that jingle&hellip;make it stop!</p> <h2>4. American Family Insurance</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Oym-Mfj3Klg" width="420" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>This is hardly an inspired jingle, lyrically speaking anyway. The advertising agency simply put the name of the company to music, using a woman's voice to sing the name instead of speaking it. However, sometimes the simplest ideas are the best. It may have been years since you saw or heard a jingle my American Family Insurance, but now that five or so seconds of warm and fuzziness is stuck in your head for the rest of the day. Sorry about that.</p> <h2>5. Marine Midland Bank</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/0nLeGhL8eXQ" width="420" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>You have to blow the dust off the archives to remember this one from a bank that no longer exists (although if you're part of the HSBC banking group, MMB is in there&hellip;somewhere). The jingle will bring memories flooding back to many of you though &mdash; &quot;Tell it&hellip;to the marine!&quot; Tell what? Well, whatever you wanted, from a loan to a decent interest rate, MMB was the place to go.</p> <h2>6. Bank of America</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Wc1ITcYmPAk" width="420" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>Considering the double meaning of the word &quot;bank,&quot; it's surprising more financial institutions didn't use a &quot;You can bank on us&quot; direction for their tagline or jingle. Clearly the biggest one to exploit this was Bank of America, who in the late 80s employed the jingle &mdash; Bank On the Leader, Bank of America. It's catchy and memorable to this day. (Scroll to 9:01)</p> <h2>7. JG Wentworth</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/cN9OKXtzHtE" width="420" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>Something that a good jingle will do (and remember, in this case good doesn't mean clever), is drill the company's phone number and service into your head. If it can do it quickly and with a tune you cannot forget, you have a winner. JG Wentworth is still getting mileage out of this operatic jingle, which goes &quot;Call JG Wentworth, 877-cash-now!&quot; Repetitive, and infuriatingly impossible to get out of your head once you've heard it, you cannot deny it works. As for the service they provide, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-know-what-annuities-are-you-might-be-missing-out">learn the downsides</a> before cashing in an annuity or settlement.</p> <h2>8. TSB (Trustee Savings Bank)</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/X7oQYKUL7ys" width="420" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>This one may be unfamiliar to anyone who did not grow up in England, but it has to be included for the way it made the word YES become synonymous with a bank. The jingle, &quot;TSB&hellip;the bank that likes to say YES!&quot; was everywhere for a few years in England, and it was an approach that not only made the bank appear friendly, but also very open for business. At a time when many banks were saying no to people for loans, both business and personal, TSB had these ads running. The clever part &mdash; it doesn't actually mean anything! Just because they LIKE to say yes, it doesn't mean you're getting your loan. It doesn't even mean you're getting an account. Smart thinking from the ad agency.</p> <h2>9. GoCompare.com</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/F_-9QFvhQWo" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>Another one from the UK, you will be humming this one all day even if you've never heard it before. As jingles go, it's right on the money. It's repetitive, it includes the company name a bunch of times, and it does it with all the subtlety of a sledge hammer &mdash; &quot;Go compare, go compare, to be sure when you insure first go compare!&quot; And it's all done with some bizarre parody of a Pavarottian-style singer whose moustache is curlier than wine corkscrew.</p> <h2>10. Mastercard International</h2> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/YC77oG91wlw" width="420" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>We've saved the jingliest jingle for last (Scroll to 3:03). It's odd to think this one came out of the 80s, it has all the style and sophistication of an ad from&hellip;the 1970s! Yes, it's &quot;So worldy, so welcome, so worldy, so welcome.&quot; Looking at it now, it seems a tad dated. But in the 1980s, it was too, so don't feel too bad. However, this is one that will be stuck in your head when you're trying to get to sleep tonight. Don't say we didn't warn you.</p> <p><em>Which personal finance jingles do you remember, even when you don't want to? Post your favorites in the comments section. </em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-personal-finance-jingles-of-all-time">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-3-best-tv-shows-about-money">The 3 Best TV Shows About Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/would-you-end-your-marriage-for-100-000">Would you end your marriage for $100,000?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-personal-finance-lessons-from-parks-and-recreation">8 Personal Finance Lessons From &quot;Parks and Recreation&quot;</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-ads-that-are-part-of-your-life">The Ads That Are Part of Your Life</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/watching-ads-could-be-your-ticket-to-a-fortune">Watching ads could be your ticket to a fortune.</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance advertising commercials jingles songs tv Tue, 23 Jun 2015 11:00:16 +0000 Paul Michael 1460800 at http://www.wisebread.com Choosing the Wrong Color Can Cost You Big on These Purchases http://www.wisebread.com/choosing-the-wrong-color-can-cost-you-big-on-these-purchases <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/choosing-the-wrong-color-can-cost-you-big-on-these-purchases" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car dealer-colors-Dollarphotoclub_69826725.jpg" alt="car dealer " title="car dealer " class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>People generally chalk up color to personal preference when making a purchase, but what about those times when that choice can actually cost money? Strangely, I spend a lot of brain space thinking about the impact of color on my finances.</p> <p>I'm typing this article from the comfort of my new coral pink yoga mat. Coral is one of my favorite colors. Also, I am way more excited than I should be about the fact that it looks like a giant stick of chewing gum.</p> <p>Even though my yoga mat comes with a lifetime guarantee and I bought it at a 15% discount, it wasn't the best purchase I could have made. If I had been focusing on long-term savings rather than how I could add cinnamon fragrance to my mat for the ultimate Big Gum Workout Experience, I would have bought the black version of the same mat.</p> <p>Here are some other ways color can affect your purchase.</p> <h2>1. Black Hides Dirt &mdash; and Requires Less Care</h2> <p>A black mat would hide a lot of dirt. By buying the coral mat, I've basically resigned myself to spending extra time, water, and money keeping my yoga mat clean&hellip; forever.</p> <p>Who am I kidding? I know I'm going to be known by my fellow yogis as &quot;that girl with the filthy pink mat.&quot;</p> <p>I'm so grateful that I look good in black. Because otherwise I would be wearing some dingy looking clothes. As much as I fantasize about wearing white jeans, it's not going to happen. Just thinking about the cost of dry cleaning gives me hives.</p> <p>By now most people have heard about the environmental damage and human misery caused by clothes manufacturing. What continues to go under-reported is the fact that the care and cleaning of clothing is actually more taxing to the environment than clothing production. How you clean your clothes and how often you have to clean your clothes can really make a difference to the planet. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-laundry-mistakes-you-didnt-know-you-were-making?ref=seelaso">11 Laundry Mistakes You Didn't Know You Were Making</a>)</p> <h2>2. White Cars Roll Cooler &mdash; and More Visibly</h2> <p>Light colors are not without benefits. The Car of Torture I drove in high school was burgundy. During Arizona summers, a dark paint job turns an automobile into a furnace on wheels. Although I literally drove home from my summer job everyday wearing oven mitts (pro tip: don't touch a black steering wheel in 120 degree weather with your bare hands), I still have scorch marks on my back fat where I accidentally branded myself with the metal end of the seatbelt.</p> <p>After the unrelenting sun exposure oxidized the burgundy paint job on my car, giving it a distinctly scabby look, my parents agreed to repaint the car white. The color change instantly lowered the interior temperature by 10 degrees.</p> <p>As an adult living in Los Angeles, I only drive white cars. Although the smog keeps my white car looking disreputable at all times, it saves me money in two major ways.</p> <p>First, who has right of way at a four way stop in Los Angeles? The driver of the crummiest car, obviously. A dirty white car saves me on fender benders because other cars give me wide berth.</p> <p>All kidding aside, I drive a white car for visibility at night&hellip; to other drivers. My father, a retired head and neck surgeon, only drives yellow cars because he knows from years of treating accident victims that yellow cars are among the least likely to be <a href="https://www.aaafoundation.org/sites/default/files/CarColorAndSafety.pdf">passively involved in accidents</a>. Most car buyers don't think about paint color as a safety feature, but the cost of buying the wrong color car could be your life.</p> <p>Despite its connection to fire engines, red is actually a hard color to see, especially at night, when people's color vision is distorted. In fact, the common belief that drivers of red cars get&nbsp;<a href="http://www.snopes.com/autos/law/redcars.asp">more speeding tickets</a> is an urban legend.</p> <p>Secondly, the clear coat on my white car has also oxidized, but the damage is much less obvious than it would be on a darker color, and much easier to repair with Clay Bar detailing versus new paint.</p> <p>Finally, in hot climates, light colored cars get better gas mileage, because they stay cooler without the use of air conditioning. While I love the look of leather seats, I can't look at a black car with a black leather interior and not think the driver doesn't have brain damage. Or, maybe those drivers are just really into pain and never wear shorts.</p> <h2>3. A White Roof Is Cheaper, Too</h2> <p>Dark colored cars aren't the only way people are wasting their air conditioning. I'm getting ready to paint my black asphalt tiled roof white to <a href="http://energy.gov/energysaver/articles/cool-roofs">reflect heat and save energy</a>. White roofs have been touted as a major way people could help <a href="http://www.csmonitor.com/Innovation/Responsible-Tech/2008/1003/how-white-roofs-shine-bright-green">slow global warming</a>. However, repainting the roof is a big no for people who live in areas that have cold, dark winters because white roofs <a href="http://www.nbcnews.com/id/35125043/ns/us_news-environment/t/white-roofs-do-cool-temps-study-finds/#.VNm5Y1PF9Cy">make homes harder to heat</a>.</p> <h2>4. Color Is a Powerful Advertising Tool</h2> <p>Color is also a powerful tool for driving consumer purchasing. Just like my yoga mat purchase, 85% of shoppers place color as a <a href="http://savvypanda.com/blog/selecting-colors-to-influence-client-buying-behavior.html">primary reason</a> why they buy a particular product.</p> <p>In addition to aiding in brand recognition, an award-winning study in 2013 revealed that even the background color on a webpage influenced spending. Researchers discovered that shoppers were more likely to spend more money on an auction site like eBay after being exposed to a red background. However, the same shoppers were less likely to spend money on a fixed priced site after being exposed to red.</p> <p>Men seem to be especially sensitive to red, even <a href="http://jht.sagepub.com/content/early/2012/04/16/1096348012442546">tipping red uniformed waitresses</a>&nbsp;more money.</p> <h2>5. Some Colors Stimulant Appetite &mdash; and Spending</h2> <p>Red and yellow are also <a href="http://www.shape.com/blogs/fit-list-jay-cardiello/color-control-eat-less-workout-more">appetite stimulants</a>, which is why just about every fast food chain uses those colors in everything from their logos to their décor. Cornell University psychology researchers discovered that <a href="http://foodpsychology.cornell.edu/outreach/color_plate.html">plate color</a> affects how much people eat. When researchers reduced the color contrast between food and the plate, study participants served themselves 22% less food. Just reducing the color contrast between the plate and the tablecloth reduced consumption by 10%!</p> <p>Over the past decade well-meaning consumers have been snookered out of their hard earned cash by an increasing number of products <a href="http://thegreenwashingblog.com/2014/02/25/marketing-and-greenwashing/">pretending to be environmentally responsible</a>. In addition to greenwashing, consumers now have to be on the lookout for pinkwashing. <a href="http://www.theguardian.com/world/2012/feb/15/komen-pinkwashing-problem-planned-parenthood">Caused-based shopping</a> as charity is problematic because everyone from fracking companies to gun manufacturers have tried to clean their dirty karma (and <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2014/10/21/komen-is-supposed-to-be-curing-breast-cancer-so-why-is-its-pink-ribbon-on-so-many-carcinogenic-products/">carcinogenic products</a>) under the guise of helping find a cure for breast cancer.</p> <p>Luckily, pink isn't just used to defraud charitable shoppers. It's still used for good by medical professionals. Some&nbsp;researchers discovered that Baker-Miller Pink (AKA bubblegum pink) has a calming effect. Just looking at the color slows people's endocrine systems and loosens muscles.</p> <p>Baker-Miller Pink. The perfect color for a yoga mat. I feel so vindicated.</p> <p><em>Does color influence your spending decisions? What color will you pay more for?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/max-wong">Max Wong</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/choosing-the-wrong-color-can-cost-you-big-on-these-purchases">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/advertising-jargon-that-aims-to-mislead">Advertising Jargon That Aims to Mislead</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-products-you-think-you-need-but-really-don-t">25 Products You Think You Need, but Really Don’t</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-products-that-cost-more-for-women-than-for-men">6 Products That Cost More for Women Than for Men</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/orange-makes-you-buy-more-and-other-sneaky-store-smell-tricks">Orange Makes You Buy More (and Other Sneaky Store Smell Tricks)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unbearably-stupid-packaging">Dumbest packaging ever?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping advertising color marketing Mon, 23 Feb 2015 16:00:08 +0000 Max Wong 1299971 at http://www.wisebread.com Buy This Product, Friend: The Hidden Power of Testimonials http://www.wisebread.com/buy-this-product-friend-the-hidden-power-of-testimonials <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/buy-this-product-friend-the-hidden-power-of-testimonials" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/5386595042_7a12dfd315_z.jpg" alt="thumbs up" title="thumbs up" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="164" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When we make purchasing decisions, we like knowing that we&rsquo;re doing the right thing. Every day there are more options out there, whether we&rsquo;re talking about groceries or automobiles. Testimonials are one of the easiest ways for sellers to reassure buyers that a particular product is the right choice. After all, if someone else is willing to tell you that she&rsquo;s truly pleased with her purchase, you can expect that you&rsquo;ll be pretty happy, too. And therein lies the problem. How do we know we can trust the testimonial? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/advertising-jargon-that-aims-to-mislead">Advertising Jargon That Aims to Mislead</a>)</p> <h2>Interpreting Testimonials</h2> <p>As you&rsquo;re reviewing testimonials available for a given product or service, you want to make sure that you're seeing a reliable recommendation. You want what's called &quot;social proof&quot; &mdash; a recommendation that can be linked back to a real, identifiable person. Marketers consider video testimonials and other indisputable recommendations to be the most effective, and for good reason.</p> <p><strong>But Is It Trustworthy?</strong></p> <p>Even if you're looking at written testimonials, there are a couple of characteristics worth considering. If the seller has posted a text testimonial with just a first name (or maybe even no name), we&rsquo;re tempted to trust the testimonial as honest or reliable. But if someone doesn&rsquo;t want their name to run with their testimonial, maybe there&rsquo;s something else going on. It&rsquo;s good to see a full name at the least. Even better is a link back to a review, social media account, or website.</p> <p><strong>Strength in Numbers</strong></p> <p>You also want to see more than one testimonial.</p> <p>If a business has been operating for awhile, there should be plenty of examples of how well they can do, just as there may be multiple reviews of the business on Yelp and its counterparts.</p> <p>It&rsquo;s a little concerning if the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/its-a-jungle-out-there-spotting-fake-reviews">testimonials all sound the same</a>, by the way. It&rsquo;s not necessarily an indicator that the seller didn&rsquo;t get the testimonials from a wide variety of buyers, but it can mean that the seller gave suggestions on what to write or asked submitters to follow a certain format &mdash; which is less helpful for shoppers deciding which product or service to buy.</p> <h2>Understanding the Appeal of Testimonials</h2> <p>When you're purchasing, it's important to understand the impact a testimonial can have on you &mdash; on a basic level, we're programmed to trust other people's opinions. A <a href="http://blog.nielsen.com/nielsenwire/consumer/global-advertising-consumers-trust-real-friends-and-virtual-strangers-the-most/" target="_blank">survey conducted by Nielsen in 2009</a> found that 90% of consumers will trust recommendations from people they know. Seventy percent will trust opinions posted online, which can include reviews and testimonials.</p> <p>Most of us are more willing to make a purchase when we see a testimonial. It's not the only factor, but it's one that we need to be aware of in order to make an accurately informed decision.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thursday-bram">Thursday Bram</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/buy-this-product-friend-the-hidden-power-of-testimonials">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/advertising-jargon-that-aims-to-mislead">Advertising Jargon That Aims to Mislead</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/debit-or-credit-which-one-should-you-choose-at-the-checkout">Debit Or Credit? Which One Should You Choose At The Checkout?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-questions-to-ask-before-buying-refurbished-appliances">4 Questions to Ask Before Buying Refurbished Appliances</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/oprah-asks-a-great-question-what-can-you-live-without">Oprah Asks A Great Question; What Can You Live Without?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cheat-sheet-retail-markup-on-common-items">Cheat Sheet: Retail Markup on Common Items</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Consumer Affairs Shopping advertising shopping research testimonials Wed, 21 Nov 2012 10:36:32 +0000 Thursday Bram 955504 at http://www.wisebread.com Great Ways to Advertise Your Yard Sale http://www.wisebread.com/great-ways-to-advertise-your-yard-sale <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/great-ways-to-advertise-your-yard-sale" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/6733886813_466a36dd6d_z.jpg" alt="yard sale sign" title="yard sale sign" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I&rsquo;m in the process of packing for a cross-country move. By the time I was three boxes in, I was committed to making sure that I had to move as little as possible, so I scheduled a yard sale. I&rsquo;m in a particularly tough location to rely on people driving by and stopping to shop &mdash; I live on a dead end with no through traffic. So I went into advertising mode. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-have-a-successful-garage-sale">How to Have a Successful Garage Sale</a>)</p> <p>Depending on the details of your yard sale, you may want to tweak your advertising plans to make sure that you&rsquo;re getting the information in front of people who are actually likely to buy. These options target a general audience, but if you&rsquo;ll be selling something very specific that you know a certain type of person will be interested in, like supplies for a certain hobby, reach out directly to that audience, such as by emailing the local groups that practice that hobby.</p> <h2>Your Social Networks</h2> <p>I know that my friends have a lot of the same interests I do, so when I decided to hold a yard sale, my first step was to set up a public Facebook event and invite all of my friends in the area. I listed some of the items that I thought they&rsquo;d all be interested in and got a huge response. In fact, I got a few requests from out-of-state from people who saw something on the list and were willing to pay to have me ship something their way!</p> <p>Of course, you can take your advertising offline and tell your social groups in person. Making a point of mentioning your garage sale at work and at social events can have a similar impact.</p> <h2>Put Up Signs</h2> <p>It&rsquo;s tried and true &mdash; putting up signs in your neighborhood will always help bring shoppers to your yard sale. I put up signs from the closest high traffic route straight up to my house, with arrows at each turn. Make sure your signs are big enough to be easily read from a distance. A single sheet of paper probably won&rsquo;t cut it &mdash; invest in some poster board and think big.</p> <h2>Advertise in the Classifieds</h2> <p>There are plenty of places that you can advertise your garage sale inexpensively or even for free. Personally, I rely on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-25-best-things-to-buy-on-craigslist">Craigslist</a> because it&rsquo;s free and easy to post to. But local newspapers and newsletters will often let you publish a classified ad for only a few dollars. You do have to plan these ads further out &mdash; at a minimum, you&rsquo;ll probably need to place your ad a week before your yard sale.</p> <h2>The Yard Sale Sites</h2> <p>There are some devoted yard sale shoppers out there, and they follow certain sites closely, particularly because they include listings of local yard sales. <a href="http://www.yardsalesearch.com/">Yard Sale Search</a> and <a href="http://www.garagesalestracker.com/">Garage Sales Tracker</a> are good places to start.</p> <h2>Community Bulletin Boards and Newsletters</h2> <p>In your area, there are probably plenty of different opportunities to connect with your neighbors &mdash; the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-reasons-why-you-should-support-your-local-library">library</a> or church or grocery store down the street may have a community bulletin board that you can post to. The neighborhood or community association may have a newsletter where you can send out updates. It&rsquo;s just a matter of getting your yard sale listed.</p> <h2>Be Creative</h2> <p>You can do as much or as little advertising as you&rsquo;d like for your yard sale. Doing a little more, of course, increases the chances that you&rsquo;ll sell everything you&rsquo;d like to. If you&rsquo;re not sure if you&rsquo;ve reached enough people through these advertising options, get creative. It&rsquo;s just a matter of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-mistakes-that-can-ruin-your-yard-sale">telling as many people as you possibly can</a>.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thursday-bram">Thursday Bram</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/great-ways-to-advertise-your-yard-sale">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-i-make-800-on-month-on-ebay-selling-used-clothes">How I Make $800 on Month on eBay Selling Used Clothes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-to-earn-extra-cash-when-money-is-tight">9 Ways to Earn Extra Cash When Money Is Tight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-decide-what-to-keep-when-downsizing">How to Decide What to Keep When Downsizing</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-garage-sale-items-that-sell-like-hotcakes">12 Garage Sale Items That Sell Like Hotcakes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-easiest-items-to-flip-for-cash">10 Easiest Items to &quot;Flip&quot; for Cash</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks Extra Income advertising declutter downsizing yard sale Thu, 04 Oct 2012 09:48:44 +0000 Thursday Bram 954800 at http://www.wisebread.com Innovations In Advertising http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/innovations-in-advertising <div class="field field-type-link field-field-url"> <div class="field-label">Link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="http://www.openforum.com/articles/innovations-in-advertising" target="_blank">http://www.openforum.com/articles/innovations-in-advertising</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/small-business/innovations-in-advertising" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000016990770Small.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="166" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Marketers are a creative bunch. Having been a digital media strategist and email marketing manager for nearly 15 years, I&rsquo;m always noticing <a target="_blank" href="http://www.openforum.com/idea-hub/topics/money/article/forget-the-phonebook-3-local-marketing-initiatives-with-higher-rois-1">new and innovative ways</a> that the advertising world reaches consumers. Once you&rsquo;ve been in the field for awhile, it&rsquo;s hard not to think of the physical areas where people slow down and congregate as ad &ldquo;avails&rdquo; and it&rsquo;s always fascinating to see how other advertising professionals are thinking about public spaces and using them to stay in front of the crowd.</p> <p>Let&rsquo;s explore a few innovative offline ways that advertisers reach audiences today. Some of them have been around awhile, and some are new on the scene, but all reflect a drive to stay in front of the consumer in an ever-increasing competitive landscape where attention spans are short and distractions high.</p> <p><strong>TSA Screening Bins</strong></p> <p>Wasn&rsquo;t this inevitable? Those dull gray bins that are the receptacles for cell phones, lap-tops, shoes and belts make great little rotating billboards. I noticed my first &ldquo;bin-bottom&rdquo; advert about six months ago on a flight from Portland to Chicago. I&rsquo;m surprised it took this long for the industry to realize bored, anxious consumers standing in line in the comfort of stocking feet might make a receptive (albeit captive) audience. Voila! A new form of advertising is born from the new realities of air travel and airline security.</p> <p><strong>Parking Spaces</strong></p> <p>I&rsquo;m not an avid mall shopper, so I may be well behind the curve on advertisers sponsoring individual parking spaces or even entire levels of parking structures. I first noticed these branded spaces about two years ago and my initial thought was, &ldquo;Well, why not?&rdquo; It&rsquo;s a great way for shoppers to remember where they parked their car (&ldquo;weren&rsquo;t we parked in the Pizza Hut space on the Pepsi level?&rdquo;). What a delicious mnemonic device.</p> <p><strong>Supermarket Floors</strong></p> <p>This isn&rsquo;t the latest method of advertising, but it&rsquo;s one of the first I remember noticing in the new league of smaller, slightly bolder physical marketing. You usually find these near the dairy products or frozen food aisles of your supermarket. They often complement horizontally what we see vertically, adding a reinforcing component to those coupon-dispensing machines or eye-level product placement. When you think about it, this is another stroke of genius&mdash;the aisles of most supermarkets are wide, the clean floors glisten with overhead lighting, and little kids (closer to the floor already) are all-too-eager to alert mom or dad to what they&rsquo;ve stumbled upon.</p> <p><strong>Shopping Cart Handles</strong></p> <p>If successful advertising really is about the sheer number of eyeballs hitting a logo or marketing message, then the person who thought of advertising on shopping carts surely got a big bonus. We shop when we&rsquo;re in a hurry, we shop when we&rsquo;re bored, we shop when we&rsquo;re stocking up for the week&mdash;and most of us grab a cart to do it. Advertising on the very space where we lay our hands is putting the message on our pulse&mdash;literally.<b> </b></p> <p><strong>Potholes</strong></p> <p>Perfect for cash-strapped municipalities, restaurants, electronics stores, coffee shops, and booksellers are lining up to patch those potholes with fresh asphalt that&rsquo;s sealed with an ad. I can&rsquo;t think of a better way to create instant goodwill than fixing and then branding a section of street where I otherwise might have popped a tire or bent an axle. At the risk of showing my age, could this be the new millennium&rsquo;s answer to Brylcreem&reg; billboards? Tell me a story along the way or write a jingle about how my favorite shampoo will not only detangle my hair; it will smooth out my commute too. Brilliant!</p> <p><strong>In-Store Digital Signage</strong></p> <p>Once reserved for hot shot advertisers on Times Square, a new generation of thinner, lighter, and cheaper LCD and plasma TV technology is making smaller electronic &ldquo;billboards&rdquo; commonplace. Big box stores use them to sell everything from groceries to face cream. This really is the ultimate in tailored messaging. The ad can change on a whim. It talks, it sings, it can communicate more information than any other type of message in the same space. To say these mini-billboards will become ubiquitous parts of our retail landscape in just two or three more years isn&rsquo;t much of a leap.</p> <p>We&rsquo;re becoming a society that&rsquo;s simultaneously saturated with advertising and savvier about its techniques. Advertisers will continue to innovate how their messages are delivered, and direct those messages in smarter, more novel, and more highly-targeted ways. This evolution will continue to change our public and private spaces&mdash;and keep old marketing folks like me wondering what&rsquo;s next and small business owners like you wondering how to develop surprising ad avails of your own.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/innovations-in-advertising">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/250-tips-for-small-business-owners">250+ Tips for Small Business Owners</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-find-freelance-clients-part-two">How to Find Freelance Clients: Part Two</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/choosing-the-wrong-color-can-cost-you-big-on-these-purchases">Choosing the Wrong Color Can Cost You Big on These Purchases</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/advertising-jargon-that-aims-to-mislead">Advertising Jargon That Aims to Mislead</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-credit-cards-for-small-businesses">The 5 Best Credit Cards for Small Businesses</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Small Business Resource Center advertising billboards digital signs innovation marketing outdoor advertising small business Sun, 23 Oct 2011 17:46:59 +0000 Kentin Waits 756219 at http://www.wisebread.com The Ads That Are Part of Your Life http://www.wisebread.com/the-ads-that-are-part-of-your-life <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-ads-that-are-part-of-your-life" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/dosequis.jpg" alt="Dos Equis on the Beach" title="Dos Equis on the Beach" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="145" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>How much does advertising affect you? You may not think it has any real affect on your everyday life, but it's an extremely powerful tool that has a major impact on so much of what we do, say, buy, wear, or talk about. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/advertising-jargon-that-aims-to-mislead">Advertising Jargon That Aims to Mislead</a>)</p> <p>I could write a book on the psychological impact of advertising on purchasing decisions, but many others have already done so, and the books are great. Not only that, but they also give you a scary insight into the manipulative forces at play in even the smallest decision &mdash; like Pepsi or Coke, Walmart or Target, or even which type of gum you'll chew. Seriously, how much does one type of minty gum differ from another? It's all about branding, and brands are now so iconic and popular that they have become part of the fabric of our lives.</p> <p>Today I present five of the more recent branding campaigns (sorry Nike fans, Just Do It is awesome, but it&rsquo;s been around for decades) that have become a part of popular culture. Ironically, advertising usually takes elements of something already existing in pop culture and regurgitates them, so it's easy to see why they are so readily accepted when reborn as ad campaigns.</p> <h3>1. The Most Interesting Man In The World (Dos Equis)</h3> <p>A brilliant piece of branding in a marketplace crowded by sexy bikini-clad girls and claims about coldness. The man at the center of the campaign has done it all. He's the epitome of &quot;been there, done that.&quot; His background makes him uber-cool. He's wise. He's the man. So when he tells you what he likes to drink, well, you take notice. This is not a new concept at all. In fact, the idea is remarkably similar to Chuck Norris facts (Chuck Norris can slam a revolving door, etc). But the way they signed off the campaign has become something that has spread across the Internet and in workplaces. The line &quot;I don't always drink beer, but when I do I prefer Dos Equis&quot; has been turned around in hundreds of different ways, most of them really funny. Here are a few I laughed at recently:</p> <ul> <li>&quot;I don't always use the toilet at work, but when I do I prefer the handicapped stall.&quot;</li> <li>&quot;I don't always use Internet Explorer, but when I do it's to download another browser.&quot;</li> <li>&quot;I don't always work from home, but when I do I don't actually work.&quot;</li> </ul> <p>See many more examples on <a href="http://www.reddit.com/search?q=i+don%27t+always">Reddit</a>.</p> <p><iframe width="480" height="390" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/U18VkI0uDxE"></iframe></p> <p><a href="http://youtu.be/U18VkI0uDxE">Watch video</a></p> <h3>2. The Old Spice Guy</h3> <p>You know you're onto something when every Tom, Dick, or Harry in the office is parodying your advertising. I've been in meetings where the presenter started with &quot;look at me, now the PowerPoint, now back to me...&quot; and so on. This is in fact a very similar campaign to Dos Equis &mdash; presenting someone so cool he's beyond cool, and then aligning him with a brand. In this case, the Old Spice brand was dying. Now, it has new life, revived by a campaign that has copycats everywhere. When your mom calls you and recites the Old Spice monologue, you've hit pay dirt. And even <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H73O8zaHmAo">Fabio</a> is getting in on the action.</p> <p><iframe width="480" height="390" frameborder="0" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/zyauqMdgOEM" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p><a href="http://youtu.be/zyauqMdgOEM">Watch video</a></p> <h3>3. I&rsquo;m a Mac, I&rsquo;m a PC</h3> <p>Another landmark piece of advertising from <a href="https://www.tbwachiat.com/">TBWA\Chiat\Day</a>. Around water coolers, on Internet chat sites, at the gym, people were asking &mdash; &ldquo;So are you a Mac or a PC?&rdquo; And surprisingly, although the ads portray PCs as unhip and out of date, many people responded with the answer PC. Why? Well for a start, Apple products are extremely expensive compared to PCs, something which of course the ads don&rsquo;t really go in to. Also, PCs are made by many different companies, including Sony, Toshiba, and HP. Macs are made by Apple. That&rsquo;s it. So getting hold of a PC is much easier. There are way more game titles for PCs than Macs, and PCs are much easier to customize and build. Oh, and let&rsquo;s not forget, the guy who plays the PC &mdash; <a href="http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=john+hodgman&amp;aq=0&amp;oq=john+hodg">comedian John Hodgman</a> &mdash; is a really funny and intelligent guy. So, who are you? Personally, I&rsquo;m someone who wants to be a Mac (and will one day own one), but I&rsquo;ll probably always be a PC.</p> <p><iframe width="480" height="349" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/C5z0Ia5jDt4"></iframe></p> <p><a href="http://youtu.be/C5z0Ia5jDt4">Watch video</a></p> <h3>4. Allstate Insurance Mayhem</h3> <p>I was going to put Geico on the list, but after speaking to friends and family, I discovered that Allstate&rsquo;s new Mayhem campaign is way more popular with them. And one that they laugh about and parody all the time.</p> <p>From the ads:</p> <ul> <li>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m the <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tuhB_0bmAaI">key</a> against your side door&hellip;&rdquo;</li> <li>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m a <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFVpaQGltrI">hot babe</a> out jogging&hellip;&rdquo;</li> <li>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m a <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thzUR_mq6OY">raccoon</a>&hellip;&rdquo;&nbsp;</li> </ul> <p>Heard from the people who love the ads:</p> <ul> <li>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m the guy who plays the same song over and over and over&hellip;&rdquo;</li> <li>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m the girl in the coffee line that stands too close to you&hellip;&rdquo;</li> <li>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m the boss who tells you not to take vacation while they&rsquo;re on vacation&hellip;&rdquo;</li> </ul> <p>The basic premise, if you haven&rsquo;t see the ads, is that a man in a suit (played expertly by Dean Winters) is basically becoming the things that can wreck your car, your home, or anything else that <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/financial-iq-test-do-you-have-the-best-auto-insurance-coverage-for-your-needs">needs insurance</a>. In a recent ad, he becomes a raccoon in your attic, and it&rsquo;s funny. Very. Plus, it&rsquo;s memorable. Of course, now people are using the same premise to say that they&rsquo;re anything that&rsquo;s annoying in life. Right now, &ldquo;I&rsquo;m the kid who refuses to go to sleep even though it&rsquo;s 10 p.m&hellip;&rdquo; is my Mayhem.</p> <p><iframe width="480" height="349" frameborder="0" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/7R8vG9NJQFY" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p><a href="http://youtu.be/7R8vG9NJQFY">&nbsp;Watch video</a></p> <h3>5. Snickers Hungry Alter Ego</h3> <p>Who do you become when you&rsquo;re hungry? That&rsquo;s the premise of the Snicker&rsquo;s campaign, and it has compared hungry guys and girls to <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTPJYZLD6L8">Betty White</a>, <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CttaAfjXj8w&amp;feature=related ">Richard Lewis or Roseanne Barr</a>, <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1pnjtxfIJDE&amp;feature=related ">Gladys Knight or Liza Minnelli</a>, and even a famous <a href="http://youtu.be/m6wYIq34HXI">ballet dancer</a> in Russia!</p> <p>Me, I get compared to <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ys0cmMiW6bI ">Joe Pesci </a>all the time. &quot;Hey Pesci, we&rsquo;re eating in ten minutes, so keep it down.&quot; I just want to say, I&rsquo;m only that angry when I&rsquo;m waiting to go out for Indian food.</p> <p><iframe width="480" height="349" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Ys0cmMiW6bI"></iframe></p> <p><a href="http://youtu.be/Ys0cmMiW6bI">Watch video</a></p> <p><em>So which recent ads (not Budweiser&rsquo;s &quot;Wasssuuuppppp?!!!&quot;) have seeped into your daily life? And how does it actually make you feel about the product it&rsquo;s advertising?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-ads-that-are-part-of-your-life">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-netflix-and-hulu-to-play-on-your-tv">How to Get Netflix and Hulu to Play on Your TV</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/five-quick-remote-control-hacks-to-save-you-time-and-money">5 Quick Remote Control Hacks to Save You Time and Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-tv-must-haves-once-you-cut-the-cable-cord">3 TV Must-Haves Once You Cut the Cable Cord</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-subscription-services-every-traveler-needs">3 Subscription Services Every Traveler Needs</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-personal-finance-jingles-of-all-time">The 10 Best Personal Finance Jingles of All Time</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Consumer Affairs Entertainment advertising buzz marketing tv Mon, 01 Aug 2011 10:36:20 +0000 Paul Michael 642369 at http://www.wisebread.com Fundamentals of Online Advertising http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/fundamentals-of-online-advertising <div class="field field-type-link field-field-url"> <div class="field-label">Link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="http://www.openforum.com/articles/fundamentals-of-online-advertising" target="_blank">http://www.openforum.com/articles/fundamentals-of-online-advertising</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/small-business/fundamentals-of-online-advertising" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000015171234Small.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Online advertising has become a crucial part of many companies&rsquo; marketing mix. Where once a business could develop an effective reach just by placing an ad in the Yellow Pages, it has become necessary (and easier) to pinpoint specific demographics online with contextual ads, as well as ads placed on sites catering to specific niches.</p> <p>Compared to traditional print ads, online ads can be dramatically cheaper. Rates can be as low as a few cents per action or impression.</p> <p>Of course, while you can keep your budget fairly low when using online advertising methods, you can also wind up spending more money than you might have intended. To make sure you get the most bang for your buck, take a close look at a variety of online advertising strategies and get a clear picture of what you have to pay to generate the impact you need.</p> <h3>Evaluate and Test</h3> <p>It is not an entirely uncommon story: someone not particularly familiar with an online advertising tool sets up an account, chooses a few keywords to advertise around and winds up with an unexpected bill for several thousand dollars.</p> <p>It is perfectly possible to keep your online campaigns under control, however, and avoid such surprises. The key is having detailed information to work with as early in the process as possible and testing the advertising opportunities you identify.</p> <p>Mikel Schwarz thoroughly tests the online advertising he uses to promote <a href="http://www.getdeogo.com/" target="_blank">Deo-go</a> and <a href="http://ribbedtee.com/" target="_blank">RibbedTee.com</a>. He suggests allocating &ldquo;a specific amount of money for an online advertising &lsquo;test&rsquo; each month. Don't go over that spend...Since you can tell online advertising performance pretty quickly, prepare more than one ad creative, and test.&rdquo;</p> <p>But before you even get to the point of testing, you need to narrow your list of potential advertising venues, so you can focus on creating a valuable test. That means vetting advertising opportunities carefully &ndash; just as you would if you were working offline. Schwarz uses three specific criteria to do an initial check to determine whether a site is worth advertising on:</p> <ol> <li>Check <a href="http://www.alexa.com/" target="_blank">Alexa </a>and <a href="http://www.compete.com/" target="_blank">Compete </a>ranking/traffic information to see what the historical information shows. Since those sites are not 100 percent accurate, look for trends (going up or going down) and gross traffic values, generally looking for traffic above 20,000 visitors per month as a starting point.</li> <li>Ask the advertising vendor for any click rate or conversion expectations. If they can't provide any, that's a warning sign.</li> <li>Attempt to contact existing advertisers to see how their ads are performing overall.</li> </ol> <h3>Determine Your Audience and Reach Them</h3> <p>Don&rsquo;t be afraid to go looking for ad networks beyond those that you&rsquo;re already using. While there are a few big players &ndash; specifically the major search engines &ndash; you can get more targeted results by looking at the ad buys offered by social networks, such as Facebook, and other sites.</p> <p>Michael Podlesney, owner of <a href="http://www.averagepersongardening.com/" target="_blank">Average Person Gardening</a>, along with its Seeds of the Month Club, has tested his advertising mix: 40% to Adwords, 40% to AdRoll and 20% to Facebook. &ldquo;We have found,&rdquo; he explains,&rdquo; that the best results for Facebook advertising occur when you are sending someone directly to your Facebook page. As far as AdWords, we use the pay per click model, using keywords derived from our analytics to drive customers to our seeds club page. We then use AdRoll in what is called &ldquo;ad retargeting&rdquo;. If a person visits our Seeds club subscription page and simply leaves, AdRoll will then put our ads on a variety of sites that the person may visit so it keeps our company on the top of their minds.&rdquo;</p> <p>Podlesney developed this approach through targeted research.</p> <p>&ldquo;For our Adwords,&rdquo; he says, &ldquo;we use the keywords from our analytic software that tells us the exact keywords people have used to find us. So we only bid on those keywords. As for the Facebook portion of our advertising we can use our industry data that we collected from various studies from the NGA and the USDA and pinpoint our exact customer demographic. We combine that data with buying data reported by various trade publications and can then narrow down to days of the week and certain times during those days.&rdquo;</p> <p>Podlesney&rsquo;s is a complex process, certainly more complex than anything new advertisers may be ready to develop. But the fundamentals are the same for every advertiser, in print or online: find your audience then find the pitch that brings them to your site.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thursday-bram">Thursday Bram</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/fundamentals-of-online-advertising">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-extra-income-with-twitter">How to Earn Extra Income With Twitter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/250-tips-for-small-business-owners">250+ Tips for Small Business Owners</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-ways-to-use-social-media-in-business">13 Ways to Use Social Media in Business</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/join-us-at-the-new-york-times-small-business-summit">Join Us at the New York Times Small Business Summit</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-credit-cards-for-small-businesses">The 5 Best Credit Cards for Small Businesses</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Small Business Resource Center advertising adwords facebook advertising online advertising small business social media social media advertising Thu, 21 Jul 2011 20:12:21 +0000 Thursday Bram 620474 at http://www.wisebread.com The Enemies of Frugality http://www.wisebread.com/the-enemies-of-frugality <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-enemies-of-frugality" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/wisebreadenemiesfrugality.jpg" alt="Burning Money" title="Burning Money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There&rsquo;s a lot of talk today about embracing simplicity and rediscovering frugality, but what are the culprits &mdash; obvious and hidden &mdash; that undermine our efforts? At root, what are the emotional, logistical, and social forces that conspire to figuratively reach into our wallets and pluck our cash day after day? Let&rsquo;s explore the seven challenges to frugal living. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/endurance-frugality-staying-the-course-and-being-a-winner">Endurance Frugality: Staying the Course and Being a Winner</a>)</p> <h2>Stress</h2> <p>Stress may be roadblock number one on the road to frugality. So many of us seem to be overworked, over-scheduled, and overwrought. Stress forces us to take the path of least resistance, and that path is typically the most expensive. When we&rsquo;re stressed, we make bad decisions about our health, our diet, and our money.</p> <h2>Competition/Ego</h2> <p>Keeping up with the Joneses is expensive &mdash; especially when the Joneses don&rsquo;t have a clue what they&rsquo;re doing. It&rsquo;s a financial game of chicken, really. Our neighbors buy a new toy and not to be outdone, we follow suit. Everyone on the block ends up with new toys they can&rsquo;t afford, and no one learns a thing. What&rsquo;s wrong with appearing a bit restrained in this country? When did frugality and poverty become synonyms? What&rsquo;s more, when did poverty become a crime?</p> <h2>Exhaustion</h2> <p>The complexities of modern life can be exhausting, and often the only thing that can keep us going is the promise of a grand reward &mdash; sometimes just as exhausting, but slightly more exciting. After a year of 60-hour work weeks, a ten-day spa vacation seems not only warranted, but deserved. Demanding a bit of mental &ldquo;spa time&rdquo; each day gives way to one grand and deliciously expensive extravagance once a year. Price be damned and frugality banished!</p> <h2>Convenience</h2> <p>Sometimes it&rsquo;s just easier to pay someone to mow our lawn, wash our car, clean our house, or make our dinner. We&rsquo;ve all been there &mdash; after a 10 or 12 hour work day, the thought of coming home only to cook and clean for another 3 seems like cruel and unusual punishment. At these moments, simple exhaustion dictates our financial decisions and frugality goes out the window.</p> <h2>Immediacy</h2> <p>Sometimes life throws us a curve-ball, and we need an item or service immediately. Maybe the family car finally dies, or you forgot about class pictures tomorrow, and your son needs a new white shirt. There&rsquo;s no financial planning to do, no research to mull over, and no time to bargain-hunt. Immediacy typically means more cash.</p> <h2>Uncertainty</h2> <p>Living a frugal life takes no small amount of commitment and daily rededication. Not only do friends, family, and work colleagues often not understand simplicity and frugality, they can be openly antagonistic about it. Truly embracing the path we&rsquo;re on in the face of our &ldquo;culture of more&rdquo; is the key to long-term success.</p> <h2>Advertising</h2> <p>If financial wisdom and rationality were a clear pool of water, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/advertising-jargon-that-aims-to-mislead">advertising</a> would be Baby Ruth bar floating by (a reference not lost on all you <em>Caddyshack</em> lovers out there). Advertising creates unrest, encourages fear, and often muddies the water of our financial minds. An uneducated consumer easily manipulated by suggestion is an advertiser&rsquo;s best-friend and frugality&rsquo;s worst enemy.</p> <p>Reviewing this list, it seems like many of these &quot;enemies&quot; are new to the scene. With the exception of number two, doesn&rsquo;t it seem like stress, exhaustion, convenience, immediacy, and the prevalence of advertising are relatively modern phenomena &mdash; at least at their current (epidemic) levels? What&rsquo;s lost in the bargain we make between our time, energy, and our money? Is the exchange a fair one, or one that simply keeps us on the treadmill to run another day?</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-enemies-of-frugality">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-many-of-these-frugal-virtues-have-you-mastered">How Many of These &quot;Frugal Virtues&quot; Have You Mastered?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-84-frugal-ways-to-eliminate-stress">Flashback Friday: 84 Frugal Ways to Eliminate Stress</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-38-ways-to-get-more-sleep-tonight">Flashback Friday: 38 Ways to Get More Sleep Tonight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-keep-anxiety-from-ruining-your-budget">5 Ways to Keep Anxiety From Ruining Your Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/grocery-shopping-and-the-4-minute-mile-how-to-challenge-yourself">Grocery Shopping and the 4-Minute Mile: How to Challenge Yourself</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living advertising challenges convenience stress Mon, 23 May 2011 10:36:24 +0000 Kentin Waits 546586 at http://www.wisebread.com Free Advertising: The Magic of Getting Media Attention http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/free-advertising-the-magic-of-getting-media-attention <div class="field field-type-link field-field-url"> <div class="field-label">Link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="http://www.openforum.com/idea-hub/topics/marketing/article/free-advertising-the-magic-of-getting-media-attention-kate-lister" target="_blank">http://www.openforum.com/idea-hub/topics/marketing/article/free-advertising-the-...</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/small-business/free-advertising-the-magic-of-getting-media-attention" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000008364500Smallcr.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whoever said there's no such thing as a free lunch obviously didn't know about PR. A single public relations stunt can be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars in free publicity. No, I'm not suggesting you <a href="http://articles.cnn.com/2009-10-18/us/colorado.balloon.investigation_1_richard-heene-mayumi-heene-hoax?_s=PM:US">stash your son in a barn and send the National Guard on a wild balloon chase</a> &mdash; that's dishonest.</p> <p>But there are plenty of honest ways to garner media attention. I've run three&nbsp;businesses over the past 20 years. The first was a consulting firm that helped businesses find financing. The second was a vintage airplane &quot;flight-seeing&quot; operation (think Snoopy and the Red Baron). And the third is a telework research and consulting firm. Without the &quot;free ink&quot; in newspapers and magazines, none of those businesses would have survived, let alone prospered.</p> <p>Newspaper and magazine ads, direct mail campaigns, and other conventional marketing tactics, meanwhile, are expensive and risky. I know. I've tried them.&nbsp;One $5,000 magazine ad, or rather the total absence of calls from it, was particularly memorable. A pre-show ad at the local movie theater seemed like a good bet for the flight-seeing business; after all, it&rsquo;s a visual sell. Fortunately, a fire at the theatre allowed us to cut our losses on that contract. The aerial banner towed behind our biplane that read &quot;R-I-D-E-S &bull; 1-8-0-0-S-K-Y-L-O-O-P&quot; felt like a sure thing too. Sadly, the only call we received was a noise complaint.</p> <p>By contrast, PR efforts are cheap and effective.&nbsp;But your business is too boring to make headlines you say? I say &quot;horse puckey.&quot; Financial consulting and telework research aren't exactly Barnum and Bailey, but we've scored media hits in the <em>Wall Street Journal</em>, <em>Harvard Business Review</em>, <em>Washington Post</em>, and other publications. Any business, no matter how boring, can be newsworthy when a bit of creativity is added to the mix.</p> <p>Let&rsquo;s say you own a neighborhood shoe store. The latest wingtips aren&rsquo;t exactly headline material, but you can create your own with a bit of creativity. These ideas might get you a foot in the door at the local newspaper:</p> <ul> <li>For Valentine&rsquo;s Day, you could run a safe &quot;socks&quot; sale or joy of &quot;socks&quot; special.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Declare April (or May, or June, or...) Foot History Month and hold a contest for the best essay about feet that have made history. For example, did you know that Warren Harding, our 29<sup>th</sup> President, had size 14 doggies? How&rsquo;d you like to fill those shoes?<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Speaking of presidents, wait for the next political slip of the tongue (you shouldn&rsquo;t have to wait long) and parlay that into a press release about famous foot-in-mouth moments.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Flip-flops can go on special when the local democrat turns republican.</li> </ul> <p>Of course, not all PR has to be funny or even quirky. The possibilities are endless. Just about any holiday, any headline, or any historical event holds the potential for a story about you, your business, your customers, or even your suppliers. Just find the angle and make the pitch.</p> <p>Best of all, PR isn't rocket science. It's something you can do on your own with very little training. You just need to find a hook that will reel the media in.</p> <p><em>How has PR helped your business succeed? Do tell!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kate-lister">Kate Lister</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/free-advertising-the-magic-of-getting-media-attention">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/250-tips-for-small-business-owners">250+ Tips for Small Business Owners</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-credit-cards-for-small-businesses">The 5 Best Credit Cards for Small Businesses</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-businesses-your-tween-can-start">13 Businesses Your Tween Can Start</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-student-who-created-a-pr-nightmare-via-wikipedia">The Student Who Created a PR Nightmare Via Wikipedia</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/lessons-we-can-learn-from-blockbusters-demise">Lessons We Can Learn From Blockbuster&#039;s Demise</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Small Business Resource Center advertising press releases public relations small business Fri, 04 Feb 2011 22:52:08 +0000 Kate Lister 486013 at http://www.wisebread.com Change Your Life with Storytelling http://www.wisebread.com/change-your-life-with-storytelling <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/change-your-life-with-storytelling" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/courtyard-laptop-2_1.jpg" alt="Laptop on a picnic table in the courtyard" title="Courtyard Laptop" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="162" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The most powerful tool that marketers use to sell you things is one that you can snatch from their grasp and turn to your own use: Telling stories.</p> <p>I first discovered this tool back in the 1980s in the catalogs of Banana Republic and J. Peterman. Those catalogs, instead of describing the products they sold, described the <em>sort of person</em> who bought the item. As a marketing strategy, it was a great success: The catalogs would describe each item as the sort of thing that exciting, sophisticated people used in their thrilling adventures &mdash; and people bought it.</p> <p>The same technique is available to you. Tell your own stories.</p> <h3>Flip the Technique</h3> <p>At the most basic level, you can use stories as a magic shield against this sort of marketing: Spot the story in the advertising and <em>tell yourself a more accurate story</em>. There was a time when I wanted the sleek, powerful sports cars I saw in ads, but I learned to counter their appeal by telling myself the true story &mdash; the story of the hopelessly debt-ridden wage-slave who took out a six-year loan to buy a car that burns fuel faster than he can earn the money to pay for it.</p> <p>All the story-telling tools that the marketers use are available for your own use.</p> <p>One in particular that I've seized upon is the technique of suggesting that some item is multi-purpose. A catalog might claim that its blazer could go from the boardroom to a private jet to the writer's bar at the Raffles hotel, or that a dress is just as perfect for an embassy party as it was for one in an off-campus house. Now I put all my potential purchases to the same test: If I can't use it everywhere, maybe I should keep looking until I find one that's a bit more versatile. I've avoided spending a lot of money by just waiting for something a little more perfect to come along. (And I've also bought very useful items when I've stumbled upon things that met my very high standards.)</p> <p>But these basic techniques &mdash; telling counter-stories and repurposing the marketer's stories &mdash; are just the beginning. The real power comes from crafting a larger story.</p> <h3>Understanding the Power of Storytelling</h3> <p>Everyone knows the power of the transient want &mdash; the allure of the thing that's so shiny you must have it, even if you know perfectly well that you don't need it or that there'll be a better, cheaper one next year.</p> <p>It's possible to control such wants with sheer willpower &mdash; most frugal people do. But telling stories is far more powerful. Telling stories lets you <em>change what you want</em>.</p> <p>After all, that's exactly what those catalog companies were doing. When they sold a messenger bag by telling a story about how it was designed for military couriers and then had been discovered by war correspondents, they weren't marketing to people who had already decided that they wanted a new messenger bag. They were marketing to people who wanted to be more adventurous, and somehow created in them the sense that this bag would make them more the person they wanted to be.</p> <p>That's the power of telling a story. But marketers have no monopoly on stories. Think what you can do if you tell your own.</p> <h3>Craft Your Own Story</h3> <p>Does your life differ from the life you want? Part of the work of getting from where you are to where you want to be is making real changes. But that's not the place to start.</p> <p>Start by imagining the life you want. Imagine it in some detail. (Some might call this daydreaming.)</p> <p>Don't get off course by imagining someone else's life &mdash; the life you'd want if your parents were billionaires, or the life you'd want if you won the lottery. Imagine your life <em>if you were the sort of person you want to be</em>.</p> <p>Now tell the story. How would that person get from where you are now to where that person would want to be?</p> <p>In my case, I wanted to be a writer. I put aside imagined lives in which I lived in a big house, drove a fast car, and owned all the latest fancy tech gadgets &mdash; which would have been possible, if I'd wanted to go on being a software engineer &mdash; and instead imagined a life where I did exactly what I wanted to do: Jump out of bed every day so I could spend a few hours writing.</p> <p>Telling myself that story was a key step in making it happen. It didn't just give me a reason to save money instead of buying something; it changed me from the sort of person who bought those things into the sort of person who didn't buy those things &mdash; because he was a writer.</p> <p>Tell yourself the story of who you want to be; that's how you become that person. Don't leave that power in the hands of the marketers.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/philip-brewer">Philip Brewer</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/change-your-life-with-storytelling">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-14"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-great-frugal-skills-and-how-to-get-them">20 Great Frugal Skills — and How to Get Them</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/change-your-life-with-a-30-day-challenge">Change Your Life With a 30 Day Challenge</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-benefits-of-changing-your-routine">The Benefits of Changing Your Routine</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/in-a-rut-6-tips-for-getting-out">In a Rut? 6 Tips for Getting Out</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/abandon-losing-strategies">Abandon Losing Strategies</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Development advertising change your life writing Tue, 09 Nov 2010 13:00:06 +0000 Philip Brewer 287255 at http://www.wisebread.com Advertising Jargon That Aims to Mislead http://www.wisebread.com/advertising-jargon-that-aims-to-mislead <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/advertising-jargon-that-aims-to-mislead" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/4246596939_2c94792698.jpg" alt="Free and other fakeries" title="signs" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>As an advertising professional, I have often had to use phrases and headlines that stretched the truth a little. Sometimes, a lot. I have never lied, unless it was blatant for the sake of humor (beer so strong, the bar prices are in Braille). But I have most definitely have been &quot;asked&quot; to use some techniques that drew a fog over what is true and what is legally acceptable. These are terms used to deceive and mislead. And now, I'm featuring some of the most popular ones here.</p> <p>Watch out for these. If they're being used, you should think hard about your purchase or do a lot more research. </p> <h3>&quot;Never pay for a covered repair again&quot;</h3> <p>I see and hear this one a lot in insurance commercials. Lately, it has been used in a commercial offering extended warranties on cars. And it is used in such a way that you think &quot;Oh great, no more repair bills, I'm covered.&quot; Well, I'm afraid not. The key word here is &quot;covered,&quot; and it renders the whole phrase useless. See, they don't tell you in the ad what is and is not covered. For all you know, the only repair that is covered is when the engine turns itself into a bowl of banana pudding. Saying you'll &quot;never pay for a covered repair again&quot; is like saying your umbrella will &quot;keep you dry on the sunniest day.&quot; Well duh, of course it will. A covered repair, well, it's covered. Of course you don't pay for it. But WHAT is covered? Is anything covered that is actually important? Find out before you buy an insurance policy or warranty that has more holes in it than 100 lbs. of Swiss cheese.</p> <h3>&quot;Compare at $XX&quot;</h3> <p>Is there a more underhanded phrase in the advertising world? I don't think so. Do you know what this means? Well, it does not mean that this product was once $60 and is now $15. Not even close. It means that someone, usually an &quot;expert&quot; working for said company, thinks that this product or service may be worth that amount of money, or is comparable to other products selling at that higher price. It's used in infomercials a lot. &quot;Buy this frying pan for $20, compare at $80!&quot; It does not mean you're saving $60, it just means that someone, somewhere, thinks that the pan is similar to another pan that could have sold for $80. It's like putting an ad on Craigslist for your crappy old sweater and saying &quot;compare at $100.&quot; It's a self-valuation, and therefore, meaningless.</p> <h3>&quot;Buy 10 for $10&quot;</h3> <p>It could be any variation of items for dollars, but the sign is misleading 99% of the time. Very, very rarely do you actually have to buy 10 items to get them for $1 each. They will simply ring up as $1 at the register, whether you buy four or five or even nine. The store is employing a simple tactic of misdirection. They want you focusing on picking out ten items rather than daring to buy just a few. And most of the time, as robotic consumers, we do what we're told and buy ten packets of rice or bottles of soda. If you do happen to buy a few, and they ring up as more expensive, just keep your eagle eye on the register and let the checkout person know you have decided against those items. But that happens once in a blue moon.</p> <h3>&quot;Free trial&quot; and &quot;Risk-free trial&quot;</h3> <p>Let's start with free trial. Most of the time, the free trial comes with a time period, after which you start paying for the service. For instance, a two-week free trial subscription to a newspaper, after which the credit card you provided will start getting dinged, automatically, for a certain amount of money. This is often called a &quot;passive subscription.&quot; You do nothing; you start paying. You have to actively call and cancel to opt out of the full subscription before the trial ends, and that's when you get hit with &quot;save sale&quot; scripts and hard-sell techniques. Free trials may give you something free, but you are giving the manufacturer your personal information and credit card info, which is just as valuable to them as the product you get for nothing.</p> <p>Now, moving on from the free, to the risk-free. What does that mean? This time, you're basically being told that if you buy something and you don't like it, then you can return it &quot;risk-free.&quot; But be careful. Even though they say there's no risk, you're in muddy legal waters. There may be restocking fees, or you may have to jump through many hoops to get your money back. And you may have to wait quite a long time to see it. I usually stay away from any kind of trial unless it is a genuine free trial that requires no money up front.</p> <h3>&quot;Just pay shipping and handling&quot;</h3> <p>Again, another landmine you need to dodge. That phrase is loaded. No legitimate business can turn a profit by giving away product and only asking you to pay for postage. In these instances, which often accompany the free trial, you are paying for S&amp;H up front with a credit card, and that information will be used to charge you for something else later on.</p> <h3>&quot;BOGO&quot;</h3> <p>&nbsp;Once upon a time, BOGO stood for Buy One, Get One free. Simple enough. Then, BOGO stood for Buy One, Get One 50% off. Now, BOGO can stand for almost anything. I&rsquo;ve seen Buy One, Get One for $50; Buy One, Get One 20% off; and even this &mdash; BOGO* (Buy One, Get One 50% off by mail-in rebate!). Marketers love to use handy phrases that are well-known to consumers, and this is another good example. We all think we know what BOGO means, but it&rsquo;s not a legal term, so it can stand for anything. Just keep your eyes wide open when you see a big BOGO sign &mdash; it may not be what it appears.</p> <h3>&quot;Free*&quot;</h3> <p>Ahhh, the asterisk. It's the marketer's friend and the consumer's enemy. You can hide a wealth of sketchy terms and conditions and nasty little &quot;out&quot; clauses behind the asterisk. For instance, in this case Free* could be followed by: &quot;*Offer only available to residents of Alaska aged between 49-52 with a surname that begins with Z.&quot; Ok, extreme example, but I've seen similar exclusions. Sometimes it's only free if you buy another item of equal or greater value, which is back to the BOGO language. Sometimes it's free if you jump through hundreds of hoops and buy other products. Occasionally, rarely, it's actually free. But the asterisk does mean someone, somewhere, is missing out. The asterisk has taken a powerful word like free and made it about as trustworthy as a grandma with big eyes, big ears, and very big teeth.</p> <p><em>Know any other terms that trick you up? Let other Wise Bread readers know.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/advertising-jargon-that-aims-to-mislead">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/big-list-of-senior-discounts">Big List of Senior Discounts</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-products-that-cost-more-for-women-than-for-men">6 Products That Cost More for Women Than for Men</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/90-off-is-not-a-deal-if-you-don-t-need-it">90% off is not a deal if you don’t need it.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-stuff-i-try-never-to-buy-new">The stuff I try never to buy new</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unbearably-stupid-packaging">Dumbest packaging ever?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Consumer Affairs Shopping advertising bargains jargon marketing Thu, 04 Nov 2010 13:00:08 +0000 Paul Michael 279684 at http://www.wisebread.com The Power of Real People: Using Customer Profiles to Sell Your Story http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/the-power-of-real-people-using-customer-profiles-to-sell-your-story <div class="field field-type-link field-field-url"> <div class="field-label">Link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="http://www.openforum.com/idea-hub/topics/marketing/article/the-power-of-real-people-using-customer-profiles-to-sell-your-story-chris-birk" target="_blank">http://www.openforum.com/idea-hub/topics/marketing/article/the-power-of-real-peo...</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/small-business/the-power-of-real-people-using-customer-profiles-to-sell-your-story" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000010562178XSmall.jpg" alt="Group of people" title="Group of people" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="166" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Consumers crave authority and credibility.</p> <p>They&rsquo;re also in search of peers who not only understand their problem but who have also found a powerful solution.</p> <p>And that&rsquo;s why customer profiles can prove so crucial.</p> <p>Highlighting positive feedback and glowing consumer reviews is an essential part of a top-level business site. But there&rsquo;s only so much a quick quote or a brief &ldquo;Thank You&rdquo; note can convey. Companies in a host of industries and spheres are creating multidimensional content that showcases how their goods and services made a difference for their thankful consumers.</p> <p>Stories, profiles and videos &mdash; often more journalistic in nature than purely advertorial &mdash; can provide a more positive and lasting impression than most straightforward testimonials and still dovetail with online marketing needs.</p> <p>The reality is there&rsquo;s real power, not to mention ROI, in real people.</p> <h3>Customer Profiles</h3> <p>Customer profiles take traditional testimonials to a higher level. They also require more time and investment and come with some unique challenges. At the outset are three hurdles:</p> <ul> <li>Identifying satisfied customers who consent to the process and to public identification</li> <li>Ensuring the customer&rsquo;s story is actually worth telling</li> <li>Committing time or money to conduct an interview and then produce a story</li> </ul> <p>Unlike a testimonial, customer profiles are typically borne of interviewing and storytelling. These are more involved than just collecting and repackaging positive feedback.</p> <h3>Finding Profile Subjects</h3> <p>It may be true that everyone has a story, as journalism wonks love to say. But the hard truth is that not everyone&rsquo;s story is worth telling.</p> <p>Comb through your testimonials and notes of praise and look for consumers who rave about your product or service. Seek out repeat customers. People who are truly passionate about their experience with your business are great initial targets.</p> <p>Make sure subjects understand your intentions from the beginning. Their name, hometown, age, photo, and possibly more will be disseminated to the masses.</p> <p>Give them complete editorial control over the finished product. That concept makes even some recovering journalists squirm, but the bottom line is that this isn&rsquo;t objective news &mdash; if the customer isn&rsquo;t happy with a quote or wants a paragraph rephrased, make the changes.</p> <p>Consider creating an incentive (a small token or gift) as way to thank &mdash; and, um incentivize &mdash; consumers to share their stories. Send them a copy of the finished piece along with their beautiful fruit basket. Whatever it is, make it nominal.</p> <h3>Telling Their Stories</h3> <p>The key here is to let the subject&rsquo;s story unfold naturally. Provide general themes and problems that scores of consumers might face.</p> <p>Instead of writing a glowing account of your product or services, focus on the consumer and his or her own unique circumstances. Allow the subject to talk about how your company provided the perfect solution. Stay out of the way as much as possible.</p> <p>Allsup, the nation&rsquo;s leading Social Security Disability Insurance representation company, does an exemplary job of this (Full disclosure: I have written some of their profiles).</p> <p>If you have a corporate mission statement or formally established company values, consider weaving one of those into the profile as a running theme.</p> <p>Brevity is always your friend on the web. Craft a solid lede, or opening paragraph, that pulls in prospective consumers. Use strong, active verbs and subject-verb-predicate constructions. Prize short sentences and economy of language.</p> <p>No matter how compelling the tale, most consumers aren&rsquo;t going to commit to a 1,500-word profile on a company website. It&rsquo;s best to shoot for no more than 750 words. But 500 is better.</p> <h3>Adding Multimedia Elements</h3> <p>Video can be even more powerful than the written word.</p> <p>It also requires a bigger commitment from your consumers. Someone who&rsquo;s happy to see their name in print might not want a two-minute interview hosted on your company site in perpetuity.</p> <p>There are also technology and travel concerns, from video load times on your site to the logistics of actually logging and then editing the tape. Of course, you can record an interview without physically being there, but odds are the finished product won&rsquo;t look nearly as polished.</p> <p>Colleges and universities have long capitalized on these types of video stories. While&nbsp;<a href="http://www.sanfordbrown.edu/Student-Life/Alumni/Alumni_testimonials">Sanford Brown</a>&nbsp;calls theirs &ldquo;alumni testimonials,&rdquo; many of the edited videos are nearly a minute long &mdash; definitely enough for prospective students to get a sense of personal story and positive outcomes.</p> <h3>Building Interest</h3> <p>Don&rsquo;t limit yourself to the confines of your website when the time comes to publish. Send press releases and try to connect the customers to smaller media outlets in their community. Make sure you have permission from the subject.</p> <p>Trumpet these stories through your social media channels.</p> <p>At the same time, encourage your front-line employees, customer service representatives, and others to keep an eye out for future profile subjects.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chris-birk">Chris Birk</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/the-power-of-real-people-using-customer-profiles-to-sell-your-story">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-7"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/buy-this-product-friend-the-hidden-power-of-testimonials">Buy This Product, Friend: The Hidden Power of Testimonials</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-personal-finance-jingles-of-all-time">The 10 Best Personal Finance Jingles of All Time</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/change-your-life-with-storytelling">Change Your Life with Storytelling</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-creative-ways-to-make-money-on-super-bowl-sunday">8 Creative Ways to Make Money on Super Bowl Sunday</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/250-tips-for-small-business-owners">250+ Tips for Small Business Owners</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Small Business Resource Center advertising customers story testimonials Sat, 09 Jan 2010 12:53:21 +0000 Chris Birk 408409 at http://www.wisebread.com