The Classified Challenge: Sell Within Seconds

Written by Lisa Lake

Continued from page 1

Say you're planning a wedding. My mother did everything for me while I exercised furiously to fit into a size 8 gown. But lots of women are marrying later now, planning forrepparttar biggest day of their lives themselves - often online. Your audience here is educated, sophisticated, and probably particular. Vague headlines likerepparttar 101155 following are of no help to them whatsoever. "Getting Married?" "Florist." "Photographer For Hire."

Do those inform? Do they entice me, tempt me to scanrepparttar 101156 entire ad? Do they testrepparttar 101157 reader with an I-dare-you-to-read-on headline?

Here are ads that informrepparttar 101158 reader right away, selling their service or product within seconds: "Music Matters DJ Service." Hey, if music is important to you, if you want more than an old harpist at your reception, wouldn't you keep reading? "Wedding Photography Candid Style." This photographer specializes in warmth, more thanrepparttar 101159 usual posed photos in front ofrepparttar 101160 altar. You might instantly picture a shot ofrepparttar 101161 bride holding her worn- out little flower girl on her lap, or maybe a shot of her dancing with her blushing young nephew. And I love this one: "Budget? Stress? Free Wedding Manual." That gets torepparttar 101162 point and directsrepparttar 101163 right market to read on: cheapos, girls paying for their own second wedding, girls like me whose father had four daughters to marry off. Another: "Best Price In Town For Photo & Video."

Or ads can enticerepparttar 101164 reader to consider something special AND something specific for their wedding. "Great Private Weddings On San Antonio Riverwalk." (Can't you feelrepparttar 101165 river mist, hearrepparttar 101166 music streaming out of nightclubs, smellrepparttar 101167 enchiladas?) How about, "Elegant Horse and Carriage" or "Hand-made Wedding Veils." Ooh, wouldn't that be lovely? The reader will read on if it's a match. And because weddings are sentimental, and it's not a lawnmower for sale here, I chose to keep reading this one: "The Sights and Sounds of Your Wedding." The body ofrepparttar 101168 ad gave great, specific information like, 'Don't let your wedding be a hazy memory. Our video packages include multi-camera coverage ofrepparttar 101169 preliminaries, ceremony, and reception.'

Lastly, this ad challengesrepparttar 101170 creative wedding planner: "Hire Elvis For Your Wedding!" He's asking you if you're really brave enough to throw a truly WACKY wedding, while atrepparttar 101171 same time giving you an immediate mental picture ofrepparttar 101172 thing.

Classified ads are useful, easy to use, and quick. Readers can search locally or nationally, and by specific category. (The San Antonio Riverwalk wedding ad ran within Texas, for example.) Online classified ads are very affordable and reach millions of readers. So use them, but write them wisely. Remember how? Inform, entice, or challenge - starting withrepparttar 101173 headline.

Lisa Lake started out writing classified ads for a big newspaper. Now she helps people market their products, services, and ideas with low-cost ads across the Internet. See her "no-work" ad placement service at Reach Lisa at or 801-328-9006.

NEWS OR SNOOZE: Will Your Press Release be a Doosie or a Dud?

Written by Meredith Pond

Continued from page 1

Similarly, if you belong to an affiliate program along with lots of other people who are using their own marketing techniques, a press release probably isn'trepparttar way to go. Media people are extremely busy, and easily get overrun with press releases. Again, in this situation a classified ad or well-written article is probably a better use of your time and money.

A clever writer can take almost any subject and turn it into a press release without sounding like a sales letter. As great a talent as that is, however, media professionals will easily see through it. An effective press release doesn't just SOUND newsworthy, it IS newsworthy. A sales letter in disguise does not make a good release.

Above all, keep in mind thatrepparttar 101154 last thing an editor wants to read is a sales pitch; sending them this kind of material will only get you blackballed inrepparttar 101155 media. If you're not sure your material is appropriate for a press release, ask an expert. Before ordering your release from an outside source, for example, call them or send them an email, tell them about your business, and ask them if they think a release isrepparttar 101156 right tool for you. If it's not, chances are they can recommend something that will serve you better.

Meredith Pond is editor and manager of DrNunley's She has written hundreds of successful press releases. See her complete publicity and copy writing packages for students, businesses, and entrepreneurs. Reach Meredith at or 801-328-9006.

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