Should I advertise my new business or just use social media?


I’m starting a small beauty business and wondering should I bother with advertising. With Twitter and Facebook around, is there any need to advertise?


Should you “bother with advertising”?


It depends really where your business is located. If the small beauty business is located in a high traffic shopping mall such as a Westfield or Chadstone Shopping Centre and in a prime position and your foot traffic is guaranteed, then perhaps you can get away with minimal advertising.


Most businesses, however, do not have this luxury due to the high rent and minimal supply of key spots. So if you intend to attract customers to your business and sell your product or service then, yes, you may want to consider advertising.


Location Targeting


Google has a great platform for such businesses called “Location Targeting” whereby you can set up a Google AdWords campaign and have your ads show up to customers in selected geographic locations.


So, for instance, you can have your ads show up only within a certain radius of your store. This ensures minimal wastage in advertising spend, compared to say running a print ad in a magazine that reaches the entire country. Location targeting will ensure you have traffic coming into your store!


Social media and advertising should not be confused


Twitter, Facebook and other social channels should never be confused with advertising.


Social media is a great tool to engage with your customer base, receive instant feedback and partake in two-way conversations.


Advertising is the opposite. It is one-way communication, and has a goal of selling, not engagement.


For your beauty business, Facebook and Twitter can be used to keep your customers informed of new product arrivals, beauty tips, special offers and, most importantly, it can provide a platform to keep your community engaged with your business.


While it will hopefully help spread the word that your business exists, it does not replace advertising.


So, yes, advertising should be considered. At Milan Direct, we are huge fans of online advertising, especially on the Google platform, as it brings to your store highly targeted traffic and allows us to get our product to our target market. Any good marketing program should combine both advertising and social media for maximum impact.