Online advertising can also be cost prohibitive and confusing since there is no real consistent standard and there are more choices than you can count. As a means of getting started, look at your local ethnic media and find out if they offer online advertising. To assess value, you will want to know how many impressions the web pages that will contain your advertisement receive. Impressions tell you how many times your advertisement will be viewed. You can expect, on average, to have less than one percent of those impressions click on your advertisement. You will also want to spend some time creating a landing page where visitors will be directed once they click on your advertisement. That landing page should be a call to action based on the advertisement the visitor clicked.
Another way to advertise online with a specifically set budget is to utilize pay-per-click services, such as those offered by Google (www.Google.com/Adsense), Yahoo (www.Overture.com) and MSN (www.StartAdCenter.com) among others. With these services you will set your budget in advance and then pay only when someone clicks on your advertisement until you reach your budget. These clicks can cost pennies to hundreds of dollars based on the keywords you choose. I suggest that you choose sets of keywords that build specialized phrases targeting your market and location as specifically as possible. You may also want to try www.ThemBid.com if you would like to provide special offers online (think of it as online coupons), as this service allows customers to easily search for local special offers.
Next, I will discuss affordable radio and TV advertising and some other alternative means of advertising.
Elmer Thomas Jr. is Founder of Above the Limit, Inc., an award winning web and software development company dedicated to bridging the digital divide. You can find out more about Mr. Thomas at www.AboveTheLimit.com.
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