Do you find it difficult to create an ad for your online classified advertising? A lot of times you will see a lawn care business post an ad with just very bland text, but thanks to a member of the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, you can now download some free graphical templates to edit and use for yourself.
He wrote to us about advertising on line and said “about 99.9% of all the lawn care ads I’ve seen on Craigslist are just plain, boring text. So I thought I should make up these 2 graphics and share them with the members.
As a test I just went to craigslist.org and put in “lawn care” in “all services offered” and checked “only search titles.” I came up with 82 results and clicked on about 3 dozen. All of them, except for 1, had nothing but boring text. They were all pretty much the same except for 1 guy. He had a picture of his truck where you could see the signs on the side of the truck. Also, he put some animated text (his phone number) on the image.
Out of all those lawn care guys in CL, their was only one I remember. I would have to read all the others text and maybe something would stick out and catch my attention.
As I reviewed the ads, I thought to myself, if just one of them would have taken the time to put up ANY kind of image, like a picture of themselves, a mouse sitting on a stick of dynamite, or whatever, it would have stood out!”
Great designs! You should consider putting up some without text so others can experiment with them too!
When you use these do you have any advice on what works best? Should you put text in the ad too? Would this help search engines find it or does the graphics alone stand out so much that it doesn’t need additional text?
What’s your advice?
He responded “as far as text in the ad, it is a MUST! Just in case someone doesn’t know, if you put an image in your Craigslist ad and someone does a search, your ad will not show up in the search results. Why? Because CL search looks at text and it cannot read an image (jpg, gif). So what I suggest is underneath the ad putting keywords like: lawn care, lawncare, [city], [zip code], [service area], landscaping, mow, etc.
Discounts on internet ads are a good idea. Especially if you have more than 1 ad running. You can “test” which ad is working by offering the same discount but different discount codes. 10% off the 1st lawn care service isn’t much off the bill but it looks like a lot to a potential client. Plus, consider the fact that he/she may become a long-term client then it is well worth a small upfront discount.
My best advice: don’t try to re-invent the wheel! Look at the BIG players and copy what they’re doing! After all, they put A LOT of R&D into their marketing, etc. One example off the top of my head is pricing everything at $xx.99. So $30 becomes $29.99. Also, stores are really good about offering 5 for $10 so what do people do? They buy 5 of [product]! Why don’t they just buy 3 @ $2 each? It’s the same price but subconsciously they’re buying MORE!”