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Monday, May 26, 2008

Advertising Is A B***-AH!

I have been trying to get my Musical Theater Camps going again this summer, and if you haven't read about my fiasco from last year, its worth a look see. The annoying part of any business
is the advertising, I guess everyone knows, and this year is no different.

I usually try to do inserts in the local papers, but this year I decided to try the local "ad" paper, because it goes to every household, instead of just those that subscribe to the paper. Now, you would think that I would get more interest with a paper that goes to every household.

Well, last year, after getting my insert out, I received about 25 phone calls the first two weeks, and about 15 e-mails. So, this year, a day after the insert came out, I awaited the rush of phone calls, and e-mails.

Yes, you guessed it. Nothing the first day. Then, I got two e-mails the next day. I answered them immediately, thinking that the rush was going to come---right around the corner...
There was nothing for about two more days, then several more e-mails, one phone call, and then....nothing.

It has been about a week now since I have received any inquiries. I have received 5 registrations, but that's about it.

Meanwhile, I am having a fit, because I just rented a huge, really amazing space because I didn't want to loose it, (someone else wanted to rent it and I had first right of of course, duh....I jumped right in!) and I am freaking out because it doesn't look like I will be able to afford it, let alone make any profit.

My new space----beautiful, huh?

And this is looking back towards the lobby area---cool loft area!

So, that's when you have to figure out how to advertise again. Where? Do I go to the same papers as last year? I checked on them and they have, of course, raised their prices. But, what can a girl do?

Well, what about a sandwich board in the center of town? Great idea, huh? Right, but then we found out that we have to be non profit to advertise in the center of town. (We are planning on applying for this, but haven't had the time or brain to do the paperwork---sigh.) But. we did find out from the landlord that we can put one on the street in front of the building. So, I quickly get online to my favorite online sign store, I whip up a signboard, and it is shipped asap to me. I got it Saturday!

I love that place.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I realize that I can't wait to see if the sign board will work, I am going to have to put inserts in the paper that I used last year. Ahhh, heck!
There goes more money out the door, and then I realize that I have to buy chairs, and the backdrop for the stage area.

I give up. I understand now what they say about when you start a business and it takes at many years to get it to make money? I'm afraid to hear... By the way, I know that I have several "business owners" that read this, so what are your suggestions? Do you have as many problems that I have?

Now, I will just pray that there isn't a chemical leak in the building.


Elly said...

Oooo, I hope this year goes better for you than last! Do you have any way of contacting the people who registered last year? Emails or addresses? They were interested once and might be again and maybe bring a friend this time. That's my only idea.

Hailey said...

Don't ask this business owner. I suck at it.

Shawn said...

Thanks for the advice, Elly,---I have actually done that,but have only gotten one response from the old students---not too positive...sigh...

But you know me, I NEVER give up!

And Hailey, you must take after me. :)

Tori said...

What a cool place! I have zero clue about owning businesses, but have you thought about advertising on Craigslist? I know it might be a little lame, but it is FREE!

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