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A Higher Standard in Web Design

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I.  Advertising

Traditional forms of advertising include newspapers, radio, and television. Some problems with these mediums are high costs, time consumption, and ineffective response.

     A.  Newspapers - including coupon mailers, flyers, brochures, etc.
	1.  High Costs

The overhead for a company to produce a newspaper is considerable. Among attributing factors are operation of printing presses, salaries for writers, editors, and other employees, and lastly distribution.

	2.  Time Consumption

Generally speaking, a budget minded business owner will devote a great deal of time and effort to create coupons or other ads for their business. This cuts the cost of hiring someone to design a layout for printed advertising. In some cases, however, the layout and design of the ad is included in the cost of publishing; even a business that does their own design is charged the same amount as a business which does not. Many times the business owner chooses the full service option for this reason. The problem is that this option gives little control to the business owner, in terms of presentation. This lack of control can eventually lead to problems like non-uniform image; a position from which it is extremely difficult to brand the business name in the marketplace.

	3.  Ineffective Response

Many business owners become frustrated with ineffective response to ads or coupon promotions. The cost ratio of producing the new customer is very high, and for this reason, many businesses no longer use this medium. Part of the problem is that sometimes a lack of market research is done by the business owner prior to publishing ads. Newspapers reach a broad based market, rather than targeting the market of that particular business. In addition, there are so many publications available, it can be difficult to choose which one is best suited for your business needs. Even for the market savvy business owner, these can be tough obstacles to overcome. But wait- it gets worse! Overcoming these obstacles is only half the battle; the larger problem is grabbing the attention of the readers with anything short of a full page color ad, which again can be extremely expensive, especially in a paper with a large circular. In order to help combat these problems and focus on the target market, many businesses print business cards, flyers, and brochures. However, the distribution of these items is normally dependant upon the store front operation of the business itself; customers coming into the establishment benefit from these items, but note that it is the customers all ready coming in- not new customers. Sometimes customers pass these items along as word of mouth advertising. Though word of mouth is the greatest credible form of advertising that can be achieved, a business must have a large customer base to truly develop an impact. Also, most of these items offer little information about the business itself; quite simply a name, address, and telephone number.

The more information that is available to the consumer about a particular business, the greater the odds are that they will enter the establishment. As difficult as it is for a business to brand its name in the marketplace, the larger problem is the lack of information about the business provided to the consumer.

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