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Medium Well

Reach your customers with the right medium.

This story appears in the April 1998 issue of Business Start-Ups magazine.

Which would you prefer: to reach 1,000 of your top prospects all at once or to meet with them one by one over time? Advertising gives you the opportunity to communicate your own unique message to any group of prospects you choose by the hundreds, thousands or even more. Yet many entrepreneurs shy away from advertising for fear of making costly mistakes. So here's a crash course in choosing the right media to build a customer base for your new business. Just follow these three time-tested rules:

Rule 1: Select the media that reach your target audience with the least amount of waste. Define as closely as possible the characteristics of the audience you want your advertising to reach, as well as the geographic area you plan to cover. If you're marketing to businesses, for example, determine which types, where they're located and any other important criteria. Or if your advertising will target consumers, write a description of your best prospects that includes their approximate age, gender, the areas where they live and any other characteristics. Then match the description you've created with the readers, listeners or viewers of the media you're considering.

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