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Free Classifieds

Free Classifieds Free Marketing & Promotion Newsletter
Weekly Internet Promotion Articles

This newsletter is supported and owned in part by Bogdan Fiedur
of Pressmania Classifieds 


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Vol. 1 issue #84  Oct 13, 2003


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Classified Secrets To Classified Ad Success
© 2003 By  Bill Nieporte

The classified ad can be a powerful tool for pulling in business if used correctly. Classified ads offer many advantages over larger display ads or other types of advertising in that these small gems are relatively inexpensive. They can be used as a primary tool of marketing or to test a product before investing in more expensive advertising avenues. The key to success is in understanding the psychology behind these small visuals.

Classified ads are just that, small visuals that give your ad a window of opportunity with your readers. That window for gaining their attention is about 5 to 8 seconds. Impossible you think? Not at all. It's all in the structure and intent of the ad. Consider the following when creating your power ad:

Headlines Are Like Freeway Billboards.



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Going fifty five to seventy miles an hour that billboard better catch your attention quickly or it's lost. There is no time for lengthy explanations. Billboards are not read, they are glanced at and if they are going to be affective they must be concise and dramatic. Now, I said dramatic, not unbelievable. Consumers are not stupid and they are weary of any ad that blares news of the next get-rich-quick scheme.
You must be more creative.

If you use the analogy of the free billboard you will get the idea of what the headline of your classified ad must achieve. It must be snappy, creative, believable, and grab the attention of the reader to pull them into the remainder of your message. That's a great deal of work for just the headline, therefore the most time spent should be on those first few words.

Classified Ads Are Invitations Only

With four to six lines to make your case it's impossible to expound on all the reasons why your product or service is right for the reader. This is why the classified ad should never be used as the whole sales strategy. In other words don't try to present, make the pitch, and close the sale all in this little itty-bitty space. It won't work. For several reasons. You won't have given the prospect enough information and the prospect is not prepared to be sold in the classified ad. The mindset is simply not there.



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A classified ad is intended as a sort of invitation. A lure to convince the reader that they want to learn more about your product or service. You must give enough information to begin spinning the wheels of desire in the readers mind, but not so much that they don't click through to your website to learn more.

Forget What Your English Teacher Taught You.

As with many forms of promotional writing the rules of grammar are often broken. The fact is that with a classified ad all you have are few words with which to create provoking copy. Grammar that is frowned upon in normal writing situations is completely acceptable in the classified ad. Fragmented sentences for instance. The fact is in order to get your message across in the least amount of words will require that your fragment your sentences.

Although capitalizing the entire copy or even a sentence in the copy will appear too aggressive, capitalizing the first letter in several words in a sentence will give a certain emphasis to sections of your ad. This is also acceptable and even encouraged.

Putting Body Into Your Ad

Use upbeat, positive language to describe your product or service. Any type of negative language even when trying to illustrate that your product "doesn't do it" will become an association with your product or service.

Make sure that your copy flows. Although you can use fragmentation, it is important that the copy flows from one logical idea to the next. Don't use a headline that is in opposition to the copy just to get the readers attention.
This is a tactic often used by amateurs and does nothing but annoy the reader thus losing all credibility.

Don't get so caught up in your creativity that you forget to be concise. Clever, poetic turns of phrase can leave the reader confused about information. That isn't to say that you should abandon creativity, certainly not. Just make sure that your clichés are memorable not confusing, and above all unique.

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Verbs put action in your copy, which in turn creates a desire to take action in the reader. Develop copy that creates a forward motion.

The Call To Action

Every classified ad must end with a call to action and that action must be encourage the reader to click and learn more NOT to buy. They are simply not ready to buy yet. Motivate the reader and instruct them to take the next step by clicking through to your website.

Consumers are smart, intelligent people. It isn't that they don't know that the option to take the next step is present, it is simply that the invitation makes it much more comfortable to do so. Allay any fears in the reader, such as specifying that they have no ob^ligation by clicking to learn more. This calms their "gonna be sold" fears and
allows them to take the action that will indeed outline all the intrinsic reasons they may want your product or service.

Placing Your Ad

After it is all written and rewritten, it is time to place the ad. The most compelling, perfectly written ad won't sell readers that are not targeted to your product. For instance the technologically developed baby bottle is not likely to sell well in a publication geared toward the elderly. You must do the research necessary to understand whom your buying audience is and what publications they read. Only then can your ad do the work necessary to bring in dynamic business.

Once you have selected the correct targeted publications plan to run your classified ad several times. Statistic tell us that readers must see your ad seven to twelve times before they actually make a buy. It is better to run one ad several times in one very targeted publication than once in several publications.

Learn, practice and develop your classified ad writing prowess and you will enjoy dynamic results in your bottom line.

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Bill Nieporte is Editor of "The FreeAgentLifestyle News" and a co-founder of a revolution that is brining new school digital technology to old-school "relationship" marketing.

Subscribe to Bill's ezine and/or join the revolution here:
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