What are some tips for creating an effective classified ad?

What are some tips for creating an effective classified ad.jpg

Every day, hundreds of people place classified ads and you may be wondering how to make your ad stand out from the rest. We know that the last thing you want is for your ad to become just another ad on the page. There are four keys to a successful classified ad: Attention – Interest – Desire – Action. Get a reader’s attention, make them interested in what you’re selling, once you have their interest, turn up the interest even more and then give them a way to take action.

We’ve put together a list of quick and easy tips and tricks that we’ve seen get the best results for our customers:

Make your ad stand out: Classified ads that use graphics, borders, and photos usually attract more eyes than run-of-the-mill text-only ads. Just check the paper – every day there are listings that stand out from the others. Some of the most useful features we offer to do this are the ‘Featured Ad’ and Web Graphic options for your Online ad and adding a photo (where applicable) in Print. Also, don’t forget to use a headline that grabs the reader’s attention.

Make your copy complete: This means two things: know what is important to people browsing in your classified category and make sure you touch on those points and use complete sentences – they’re easier to read than a series of phrases and random words. Put yourself in the customer’s place. If you were browsing the classified ads, what would grab your attention? What words or phrases would make an ad stand out from the rest for you?

State a price or a range: Quote a price, even if it’s high or low. If you’re high, explain why it’s worth it (for example one of a kind, luxury item, hand-crafted, etc.), and if it’s low, be sure to mention that it is a great deal and also explain why the price is so low (for example moving, quick sale, special purchase).

Include a point of contact: It goes without saying, but if you have no way for a reader to contact you in the ad, you’re not going to get a response. Include multiple forms of contact such as a home and cell phone number or your email address. Also, if you are only available to answer a call during certain hours, make sure you state that in your ad (for example: call after 9pm, leave a message, etc.)

Specify brand names: If you are selling name brand merchandise, be sure to name the brand (and model, if pertinent) in the ad – the more specific the better. People want to know exactly what it is you’re selling before they call and the more information you can provide, the better. Think of it as if you are a customer in a shop, would you prefer to know the specifics of a product or just a general idea of what it is?

Let white space in print work for you: This is an important layout element in classified advertising because the average classified page is heavy with small type. The more “empty” space in your ad, the more it will naturally be noticed. Boxing an ad (adding a simple border around it) automatically creates white space around it, which in turn automatically draws the eye.

Urge the reader to act now: By ending your ad with a call to action such as “12-hour sale,”“this week only,” or “call now, won’t last long”,” you add extra incentive for the interested buyer to call you first.

Checklist – Every classified should include at least the following:

• Sale date or days and hours
• Price
• Make and model
• Size and color
• New, used or reconditioned
• Service or warranty
• Name, phone number
• Address or directions to location 

Go to our website:   www.ncmalliance.com


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