Britain’s three million small businesses are being offered a beginner’s
guide to advertising, as part of efforts by the industry to tap into a
potentially lucrative new income stream.
The Advertising Association is behind the initiative which offers
straightforward advice to businesses as small as a high-street
hairdressing salon. The campaign is also backed by the Department of
Trade and Industry.
The guide is jargon-free and presents ‘how-to-do-it’ advice for business
people who have never used advertising and know little about it.
The AA began talking to the DTI about the mutual benefits of targeting
small businesses at the start of the last recession, and the two
organisations have since run joint seminars around the country to
Andrew Brown, the director general of the AA, said: ‘The guide isn’t
intended to be a major piece of advocacy for advertising but will help
people who are thinking of running advertising for the first time.’
The initiative is directed mainly at new and successful small businesses
which have about 25 staff.
‘We’ve no idea how much potential business exists out there, but we
believe the initiative will not only be helpful to lots of small
businesses but to local media owners and agencies as well,’ Brown said.
The guide explains how to target customers, how market research works
and gives hints on choosing an agency, which media to use and how
advertising can be tested.
‘A major problem to be overcome with newcomers is their belief that
having advertised once they don’t have to do so again,’ Brown added.
‘The need to advertise consistently may seem self-evident to some, but,
in other cases, the advice has to be presented very simply indeed.’
The DTI is helping to distribute the guide through its business links
Richard Page, the minister for small businesses and industry, said:
‘Small firms need to recognise the importance of effective advertising
in sustaining growth and development.’