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Flyer Distribution

Flyer distribution remains an effective way of getting a message out on short notice.

Flyer distribution is usually reserved to the local level. [©Jupiter Images, 2009]
©Jupiter Images, 2009
Flyer distribution is usually reserved to the local level.

Flyer Distribution

After the careful planning that goes into designing a flyer, such as choosing a message, layout and color scheme, effective flyer distribution is essential to reap the flyers benefits, namely new clientele. Flyers or pamphlets can represent a major part of a business's marketing budget, especially businesses that are just getting off the ground. Business owners do not want to spend money on flyers that get discarded, and by following some simple strategies, owners can get their message out to the right market. The simplest way to effectively distribute flyers is to deliver directly to households, since door-to-door campaigns render much less waste than targeting public areas.

Distributing to Residences

According to Tightwad Marketing, the biggest flyer distribution mistake business owners make is targeting too wide of a distribution area. Marketing campaigns that involve placing flyers in newspaper inserts may overshoot their ideal range, because newspapers go out to wide geographic areas. For instance, businesses advertising a landscaping service will waste money advertising to people who live in apartment buildings and condos.

Similarly, businesses that provide a service of any sort are better off targeting a very specific area; this will prevent the business from having to travel far distances to deliver its service. Keeping a service-based business centered in a strategic area where there is likely to be a high demand is the most cost-effective strategy. Businesses that already have a solid customer base should advertise near their clients; a block-by-block approach renders better results than distributing flyers throughout an entire zip code.

Business owners who hire a flyer distribution service should perform some follow-up actions to make sure they are getting their money's worth. One example is driving around targeted areas to see that the flyers have been delivered to local households. If the owners suspect fraudulent activity, checking area dumpsters might reveal whether distributors did their jobs.

Small business owners on a budget should also give distributors instructions about the types of residences where they want their flyers dropped. However, until the company is up and running, the most efficient flyer distributor is probably the company's owner. Not only is it free, but the owner gets a better look at the neighborhood where he or she does business and gets to meet potential customers. When a company is first starting out, the use of personal relationships fostered by face-to-face meetings helps build customer loyalty.

Distributing Flyers in a Public Area

Though door-to-door flyer distribution is thought to be the most effective method, businesses that want to take advantage of heavy foot traffic can hand flyers out in public areas. The South African Education and Training Unit advises against handing out flyers or pamphlets at bus stops where people are likely to have their hands full or are in a hurry. Vibrant Direct, a marketing and pamphlet distribution company, notes that it has had success targeting busy intersections; the key is to have flyer distributors dressed in promotional gear, like a logoed polo or bright t-shirt. Handing out flyers in public areas is likely to yield the highest returns if the areas are hand-picked based on their relationship to the product or service; for instance, a tutor or child care service might have the best luck handing out flyers near schools as they let out.

The point of handing out flyers is getting people to look at them, so forcing flyers on passersby is rarely effective in fact, for a business owner on a budget, it is downright wasteful. Offering flyers to people who at least look interested is a better strategy, especially if the handoff is accompanied with a comment like, Come in and get your free smoothie when you order a burger!

Tie-Ins and Follow Up

Marketing experts recommend flyering a house or location three times, because most people need to see something at least three times before they remember it. To tie in with the flyer campaign and increase visibility, business owners can post advertisements in the local paper or put up flyers in local coffee shops or restaurants with public bulletin boards.

A business owner can track the success of a flyer by tying it in with a coupon or special offer. The number of customers who return with the flyer should give the owner an idea of how effective the investment was. Also, business owners should not be discouraged if their flyer is not producing the results they would like. Very often, the flyer itself is the issue, rather than a lack of demand for a service or product. Making an effort to retool the flyer with a new color, a sleeker design or a special offer might generate more of a response.

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