Cheer Marketing 101: Marketing in a Down Economy

February 10, 2010

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Tanya Roesel founded Midwest Cheer Elite, an all-star gym in West Chester, in 2003. She has more than 18 years of experience in the cheer industry and has coached several teams to national titles. A regular participant in coaches conferences and judge for national competition circuits, Roesel hopes that Cheer Marketing 101 will help cheer gyms and businesses work together and reach their full potential for the good of the sport.

Even with the economy down, it’s more important than ever to make sure you are marketing your business. Here are some key do’s and don’ts you need to know about marketing in this economy.

Don’t

* Newspapers – They used to be the No. 1 form of advertising, but as you’ve noticed, the newspaper is getting smaller and smaller due to the number of advertisers pulling out. Unless you are getting an amazing deal, you won’t be getting the “bang for your buck” that you did years ago. Your target audience is reading the news on the Internet and spending less time with the newspaper.

* Magazines – The only magazine advertising we do at Midwest Cheer Elite is front or back cover. We are never guaranteed that magazines that are mailed to homes will be read. Therefore if we advertise on the front or back cover, we have a 50 percent chance of being seen. Why? When the potential customer gets their mail and puts it on the kitchen table, we have a 50/50 shot that the magazine will land on the front or back cover, now exposing our ad! Whether they ever read the magazine, we know our ad has been seen.

Do

* Internet Communication – Whether it’s Facebook or MySpace, online social networking has become a great avenue to advertise to current as well as potential customers, and guess what? It’s free! Utilize it for upcoming events, special promotions or just to keep your name out there … Just be sure that whatever you put out on the “worldwide web” is appropriate for your business.

* Flier, flier, flier – The tried and true form of marketing is getting your business information out there by putting out fliers! But there is a method to the madness.
Go to your local skating facility or anywhere you might find families in large quantities. Get permission from the owner to “flier the lot.” Once you have permission, place fliers on the vehicles in the lot. Once the family comes out, the flier will end up in their car and eventually on their kitchen table. Make sure the flier quality represents your company as well.

* Walking Billboards – Repetition is the key to good marketing, and what better way than to make sure your athletes and customers market for you? T-shirts are a cheap, inexpensive way to get the word out to hundreds, in several different markets. Every time a child registers as a new customer to your facility, they should receive a free T-shirt. You’re guaranteed to see the shirt not only on that child in school, but in several other areas as well.

** Stay tuned for Cheer Marketing 101’s next installment: “Negotiating And Getting The Most ‘Bang for Your Buck.'”

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