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Our Top 5 Blog Posts of 2018

By Anna Ruby on 1/2/19 10:41 AM

What content has performed best for your blog? For us, content targeted toward our top categories of business has shown the best results.

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Cartvertising at IndoorMedia: The Complete Guide

By Anna Ruby on 12/12/18 10:54 AM

Become a Local Celebrity

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Facebook Marketing for Real Estate Agents

By Anna Ruby on 12/5/18 10:35 AM


Facebook can be a great place to drive leads if you know what you're doing. Creating ad campaigns often requires years of expert knowledge, and generating leads through organic traffic can feel like pulling teeth. However, Facebook marketing doesn't have to be a mystery to the independent real estate agent. We're going to walk you through the steps of creating a Facebook presence so that you can drive leads and increase your sales. 

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How Small Healthcare Practices Advertise Locally

By Anna Ruby on 11/28/18 10:45 AM

New patients are the lifeblood of any healthcare practice. However, for consumers, choosing a new doctor or dentist can be an overwhelming experience. Patients want to feel like they’re in good hands. But because quality of service cannot be gauged until after a visit to your office, effective advertising must demonstrate the value of your practice before they ever walk through your doors.

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6 Do’s and Don’ts for Dry Cleaner Coupon Advertising

By Anna Ruby on 11/21/18 10:50 AM

Coupon advertising is a fantastic way to get your dry cleaner’s name and message out into your community. With the high level of local competition, you need to make sure that your advertising campaign is better than the dry cleaner down the street from you. Here are 6 Do’s and Don’ts for creating a profitable coupon advertising campaign.

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The Best Local Advertising Ideas to Improve Restaurant Sales

By Anna Ruby on 11/16/18 8:35 AM

As a restaurant owner, the overarching goal of your business is to make a profit. That’s why it’s critical for restaurant owners to put in the legwork to ensure that seats are filled, food is consumed, and money is made. At the end of the day, you’re in the business of sales.

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The Top 5 Blogs/Sites for Auto Repair Marketing to Follow

By Anna Ruby on 11/2/18 10:33 AM

It’s 10:00 pm. You’ve just gotten home from work, kicked off your shoes, and started to relax for the night. But as you start to recover from a hectic day at the shop, you also remember that this week’s revenue was less than last week’s, which was less than the week before. Between inventory, employee wages, and equipment, keeping your auto shop afloat is a fine balance between knowing when to save your hard-earned dollars and when to invest it in marketing and advertising. You know you need to bring in more customers, but you don’t want to waste money on advertising that won’t work. And how much time is it going to take to research all your options before you can even choose an advertising tactic?

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The Best Holiday Marketing Ideas for Restaurants

By Anna Ruby on 10/26/18 11:42 AM

Let’s admit it: The holidays are a bit of a mixed bag for restaurants. Depending on how you look at it, the upcoming winter months are either a time for friends, family, and festivities—or time for hectic, relentless consumerism. For restaurant owners, however, they present an opportunity to reach new customers and engage with existing ones.

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6 Marketing Ideas for Auto Repair Shops to Keep Customers Coming Back

By Anna Ruby on 10/19/18 10:10 AM

At the end of 2016, 228,600 auto repair shops were operating in the United States. That number is similar to a decade ago, before the recession, and is expected to continue rising.

Here’s another statistic: Americans own 263.6 million vehicles. That’s a crazy amount of cars and trucks, yet the average shop sees only 22 vehicles a week. With such a large number of vehicles never making it to a mechanic, auto shop owners can’t be passive in their marketing efforts. Competitors lurk, waiting to take your customers, and with the industry growing, more competitors will emerge. Auto shop owners must work hard to keep the customers they have and attract new ones.

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IndoorMedia Joins the Nielsen Connected Partner Program

By Doug Endsley on 9/27/18 4:38 PM

Houston, TX (May 9, 2018): IndoorMedia (RTUI, LP), the nation’s premier register receipt producer and distributor of receipt-based advertising and promotion programs, today announced that it has joined the Nielsen Connected Partner Program. The partnership will help IndoorMedia’s register receipt program leverage the power of Nielsen data for consumer-packaged goods (CPG) looking for new media to reach shoppers.

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How Many Ways Can We Say It?

By Eric Shafer on 9/18/18 1:02 PM

This blog is supposed to be a resource for our customers, both current and potential. We have articles about Coupon Advertising and Brand Advertising. We talk about getting ROI on your advertising, tips for Insurance Agents, Realtors, Restaurants, Dry Cleaners, and Auto Shops.

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Small Businesses Rejoice! Facebook Overhauls Reviews in Your Favor

By Anna Ruby on 9/6/18 4:50 PM

If you’re a small business owner, chances are you’ve been traumatized by online customer reviews. Many consumer review websites offer no help when it comes to responding to complaints (seriously, making me pay to leave a comment is just bribery), while others even hide your well-earned reviews from the world. Experiences like these uphold the unspoken truth that review websites are designed solely for their own benefit rather than to help consumers or business owners.

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How to Make Your First Advertising Your Best

By Eric Shafer on 8/30/18 9:00 AM


There is an awful lot of information out there about how to advertise your small business. But as Stephen Covey, author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, would ask, how do you put First Things First?

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5 Tips to Combat Burnout with a Professional Recovery Day

By Anna Ruby on 8/24/18 4:11 PM

On the 3rd Saturday of every month, my gym replaces the regular boot camp classes with “Rest & Recovery”. The loud rock music gets swapped out for relaxing, instrumental melodies, everyone grabs a yoga mat, and then we stretch and foam roll for one full hour. The following Monday, trainer Tre is back to ‘stupid hard’ workouts and pushing us to our limits to reach new goals. (Don’t believe me? See for yourself.)

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Do You Work "On" or "In" your Marketing?

By Eric Shafer on 8/16/18 2:03 PM

Michael Gerber is one of my favorite authors. In his E-Myth series, he explains that there are a number of "myths" about entrepreneurship. Foremost, is the idea that small businesses are started by people deciding to risk capital to make a profit. It is about someone "finding a need" and delivering a solution. It all sounds very calculated and wall-street-esque.

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[New Research] Just How Many People are Using Coupons?

By Anna Ruby on 6/1/18 8:24 AM

The coupon craze has risen to new heights. While consumers have always wanted to save money, Google Trends shows that interest in the term “coupons” has more than doubled since 2004. And, according to research from Hawk Incentives, 97 percent of consumers look for a deal when they shop, and 56 percent are more likely to look for a deal in 2017 than 2016. Survey after survey points to the same trend: Americans are still crazy for coupons.What follows is some more research diving into the details of coupon usage.

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Is print dead?

By Anna Ruby on 5/18/18 8:05 AM

Paul has spent the last 3 hours searching for "small business advertising" on Google. He's tried Facebook, Google AdWords, and even hosted a community event, but he's still in need of new customers. So, Paul texts his neighbor Quinn to see what advertising he's been doing since Quinn's pizza shop has been busy non-stop lately. Quinn texts back, "Direct mail and coupon advertising." "There's no way!", says Paul. "Print is dead. Nobody looks at that stuff!" Six months later, Quinn's pizza shop is still busy and Paul is still searching for new sales. 

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The Anatomy of a Good Coupon Ad: What to Include and What to Avoid

By Anna Ruby on 5/14/18 8:20 AM

Six months ago Rick invested in register tape advertising for his restaurant. After hearing success stories from other restaurant owners, Rick expected to get a quick return on his investment. Now six months have gone by and only one new customer has come in from the campaign. Determined to find the source of the problem, Rick goes to the grocery store to see the receipts first-hand. Much to his surprise, Rick's offers aren't nearly as good as he thought they were! His $2 off an entree pales in comparison to the other offers, and the colors he insisted on using are muddy and unappealing. Realizing he's made a huge mistake, Rick rushes back to the restaurant to call his Marketing Consultant, ask for forgiveness, and get his coupon advertising campaign back on track.  

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Insurance Agent Advertising

By Anna Ruby on 5/10/18 8:20 AM

Establish a Foundation of Trust

As an insurance agent, building familiarity with consumers well before they need your service is an integral part of making the final sale. An established foundation of trust can make all the difference when a person's policy expires or a life-changing event occurs and they're looking to buy from their friendly neighborhood agent. To lay this foundation, you need to put your business front and center of consumers' attention.

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Cartvertising: How to Advertise in Your Local Grocery Store

By Anna Ruby on 5/4/18 8:05 AM

The setting: your local grocery store. The scene: Alice Walker has entered the store and grabbed a shopping cart. She opens up the seat of the cart to set her purse down.  There she sees an ad for Charlotte Wilson, Realtor extraordinaire! Alice continues her shopping trip, adding items to her basket, and each time her eyes catch a glimpse of the ad. For the next 47 minutes, Alice repeats the routine, grabbing, placing and seeing. She stops and talks to friends and neighbors, checks out, and the last thing she sees when returning her cart is Charlotte Wilson, Realtor extraordinaire! At work the next day, Alice learns that one of her colleagues is planning on selling her home. When asked if Alice knows a good realtor, she says, “Have you heard of Charlotte Wilson? I see her everywhere.” 

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Restaurant Advertising Tactics That Actually Work

By Anna Ruby on 4/26/18 8:35 AM

American restaurants collectively spent $6.4 billion on advertising according to research from 2013. With so much being spent on advertising we have to wonder, "How much of that $6.4 billion is spent on advertising tactics that actually work?"

Whether you're investing money or time, your restaurant should focus on tactics that are proven and profitable for your category of business. 

Let's review three types of restaurant advertising that have a great track record and are easy on the wallet.

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Salon Advertising

By Anna Ruby on 4/23/18 8:12 AM

Increase Sales for Your Hair or Nail Salon

Growing your client base requires more than just providing high-quality services. To bring in new clients, you've also got to market your business consistently in your local neighborhoods. To grow your client base and maximize your profits, invest in the proven and profitable technique of coupon advertising.

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What are Google Local Services Ads?

By Anna Ruby on 4/20/18 8:03 AM

Google's Local Services Ads is a new form of paid advertising for local professional service providers that can help you establish trust with consumers, generate leads, and close sales. 

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Welcome to the "Digital Advertising 101" Series!

By Anna Ruby on 4/9/18 8:56 AM


Digital advertising has become a practically mandatory element of marketing. If you're like most small business owners (myself included), getting started with digital marketing can be overwhelming. You know that your business relies on the success of your online efforts, but finding easy to understand and effective tactics seems impossible. This article, and our series of posts about digital marketing, will guide you through actionable steps you can take to knock your digital marketing out of the park!

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Quick Guide to Creating a Website

By Anna Ruby on 4/5/18 8:45 AM

William has been thinking about establishing his company's presence online, and thinks that creating a website would be the best way to accomplish that. He's been daydreaming about a simple site with just a few pages that simply acts as a quick way to grab leads. Even though his idea is simple, getting started seems incredibly complicated. Is there any way for him to design a great website with no skills, limited time, and a tight budget? 

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Get Unstuck: Refresh Your Organic Social Media Strategy

By Anna Ruby on 4/2/18 8:28 AM

Steve tried all sorts of stuff to improve his company's social media growth, but he never got a ton of traction on his posts. He was constantly researching how to improve social media KPIs, and all he could find was POST MORE. At his best, Steve spent up to 6 hours a week writing and scheduling daily posts, and barely had time to monitor the accounts while doing his other responsibilities as business owner. The more Steve dreaded this part of his job, the more he realized he needed a new organic social media strategy.

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Healthcare Advertising

By Anna Ruby on 3/30/18 8:12 AM

Show the Value of Your Practice

When people move to a new area or are looking for a second opinion, how do they choose their healthcare providers? Trusting a single person with your health can be scary, so patients want to feel a sense of trust and confidence in your abilities before they meet you in order to select you as their primary healthcare provider. Since the service quality of your practice cannot be gauged by a consumer until they become a patient, effective advertising that demonstrates the value of your services can make all the difference in growing your practice. 

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Dry Cleaner Advertising

By Anna Ruby on 3/26/18 8:23 AM

Be a Competitor in Your Market

The landscape for dry cleaning has drastically changed in the last 10 years. From business casual to "no-wrinkle" fabrics, consumer habits don't rely on dry cleaning as heavily as they used to. While you may not have control over what people wear to work, advertising is well within your control. Even in an overcrowded market, effective advertising can make your business stand out. 

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Legal/Attorney Advertising

By Anna Ruby on 3/22/18 8:23 AM

Build Your Legal Practice 

Nobody wants to hire a lawyer. But when important legal decisions need to be made, everyone wants the best lawyer. The decision making process can be long and tedious for consumers if they don't already know where to look and who to talk to. That's why branding your firm is so important. You need to establish value and trust with consumers before they're ready to buy, so that when the day comes for them to seek out legal help, you're the one they think of first. 

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Automotive Advertising

By Anna Ruby on 3/19/18 8:06 AM

Give Your Profits a Boost

Automotive services and car washes can be highly competitive within a small community. When almost any auto shop or car wash provides the same selection of services, you need to find something about your business that sets you apart from your competition. More importantly, you need to communicate this unique value to your prospective customers. To increase your profits, you need advertising that conveys your value and builds familiarity with the shoppers in your community. 

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Realtor Advertising

By Anna Ruby on 3/15/18 8:29 AM

Build Trust & Recognition

When buying, selling, or listing property, consumers look to a trusted adviser. It would be rare for a person to pick the very first realtor they saw to handle such a large transaction. Your business needs to build trust, familiarity, and recognition with consumers in order to turn them into clients. Who wouldn't want to buy, sell, or list their house with someone consumers feel they already know?

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Restaurant Advertising

By Anna Ruby on 3/13/18 8:52 AM

A Direct Impact to Your Bottom Line

Restaurant owners face mountains of challenges. Saturated markets, changes in consumer eating habits, and ever-changing technology are just a few of the outside factors that challenge your day to day. You've worked countless hours opening and managing your restaurant, priming it for success. From hiring the best employees to setting a great tasting menu, you've made sure that every detail makes a direct impact to your bottom line.

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Online Reputation Management: How to Take Command of Your Brand

By Anna Ruby on 3/8/18 8:50 AM

Bill just wanted a fun night out with the guys. They decided to try a different restaurant to shake things up. However, the hamburger he received wasn't anything like what he gets at his usual place. The fries were too thick and it took what seemed an eternity for the food to be served.

Jill just wanted to open a neighborhood eatery. She prided herself on her new twist on a hamburger. Many of her friends had told her how much they love the thick-cut fries and the causal atmosphere helped people get out of the hustle and bustle.

So now, Bill has become the self appointed food police and logs into Yelp to express his disappointment. Jill wakes up after a long night, only to find her image maligned by a customer. Jill replies to Bill's comments to explain the concept and that he should try it with a new attitude. Bill takes it as a personal assault and gets his friends to post as well. Soon, Jill has a whole collection of negative comments and it is going downhill fast...

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Why do Coupons Need Expiration Dates?

By Eric Shafer on 3/5/18 8:10 AM











Beyoncé (another Beyoncé) has decided to drum up some new customers for her Lemonade stand. So, she sends out a great offer for her fans to get two glasses for the price of one! However, being the savvy business woman that she is, Beyoncé knows that the real profit for her is in repeat customers, not one timers. So, she sends out a ton of coupons for just three months, let's everyone know about it on Facebook, and sits back making plans to spend the incoming profits on another great cause!

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Domain Registration: Basic Tips and Best Practices

By Anna Ruby on 3/1/18 8:15 AM

While you may not be familiar with the proper term “domain name” you use it daily whenever you visit a website or send an email. Simply put, a domain name is a unique web address. It is used most commonly as your website address, but can also be used to create a customized email address.

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Hey Google, come find my business!

By Anna Ruby on 2/26/18 8:10 AM

It is the grand opening of your new business and the most exciting day of your life! All day you wait for a flood of customers to walk through your door, but the day comes and goes with just a few mere passersby. “Where did I go wrong?” you ask.

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Advertising Cliches Your Business Needs to Stop Using Immediately

By Anna Ruby on 1/2/18 12:05 PM


You’ve seen and heard them over and over and over. You may have used them yourself.

Advertising clichés. No matter how much consumers—as well as businesses of all sizes—try, they are inescapable.

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The Core Values For Effective Advertising

By Eric Shafer on 12/21/17 11:26 AM

There is a balance that must be struck when advertising. On the one hand, businesses need sales to survive, on the other, customers look to enrich their lives in some way. The business wants more profit, the customer a better deal. The business may know the best solution, the customer may not want to be “sold.”

To navigate this dichotomy, you need a moral compass to help ensure that while you may stray from the path, you will always be able to find the right direction. Core values for advertising may, at one extreme, seem redundant or at the other extreme, trivial, and yet they are essential in today’s advertising market. For example, the coveted millennials market is primarily reached through transparency and authenticity. According to a 2016 Gallup poll, “Yes, millennials want to be healthy, but they also want a purposeful life, active community and social ties, and financial stability.” While your business may target older or younger demographics, trust and long term relationships are still a winning combination.

The following core values will help you stay true to your customers and to yourself.

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The Hard Truth: Why So Many Restaurants Fail in Their First Year

By Anna Ruby on 12/21/17 8:55 AM

New restaurants face an uphill climb to succeed. One recent study found that 17 percent of startup restaurants fail within the first year. Though this is a more encouraging statistic than previous gloom-and-doom numbers that pegged first-year failure rates well beyond 50 percent, it provides little solace to entrepreneurs who know that everything about their restaurants must be perfect from the start to make it beyond 12 months.

New restaurants rarely struggle because their owners and managers aren’t putting in hard work. Often, other reasons are the major contributors to why restaurants fail. Here are some of those factors that entrepreneurs should keep in mind as they strive to prosper in their first year of business:

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4 Steps to Evaluate Coupon Advertising

By Doug Endsley on 12/21/17 8:39 AM

Every business owner has to start somewhere. IndoorMedia's CEO, Doug Endsley, started his career working in fast food and moved on to found the nation's largest in-store advertising company. In our Business Growth Leadership Series, Doug discusses the events that led to his current success and how today's entrepreneurs can learn from his decades of experience.

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Sell More Houses: How the Best Realtors Advertise in their Community

By Anna Ruby on 12/5/17 8:00 AM

Most real estate agents work hard for their clients, whether those clients are buying or selling. But all that hard work doesn’t mean a thing if you can’t attract new clients. According to the National Association of Realtors, the average Realtor draws 13 percent of business from repeat clients and another 18 percent from referrals by past clients. Although that underscores the importance of delivering a superior experience once hired, it also reinforces the urgency of finding and securing new clients.

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Preparing for Winter: How to Market Your Auto Shop During The Holidays

By Anna Ruby on 11/30/17 8:00 AM

The holiday season is almost here, a time for “Ho, ho, ho!” Unfortunately, for auto shops trying to market themselves, ’tis the season to see customers go, go, go.

Car owners need repairs during the winter just like at any other time of the year. However, they often get their vehicles repaired in winter only after a breakdown or for some other urgent issue Consumers often postpone optional repairs and services until the weather gets warmer, when their wallets aren’t so stretched from the holidays.

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What's the Difference: Print Ads vs. Grocery Store Advertising

By Anna Ruby on 11/27/17 9:00 AM

Print is one of the oldest tricks in the proverbial book of advertising. If we want to really trace the long-winded history of American print media, we must turn to 1729, when Benjamin Franklin first published The Pennsylvania Gazette, which included pages of “new advertisements” (incidentally, Franklin also published the first magazine ads, in 1742). But we don’t have time for that—so, suffice it to say that print media has been around as long as mass-produced content.

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Restaurant Promotion Ideas: Increase Sales With These 6 Campaigns

By Anna Ruby on 11/23/17 9:00 AM

Eating at restaurants remains as popular as ever. According to the National Restaurant Association, 90 percent of consumers say they enjoy eating at restaurants; in contrast, only two-thirds of consumers say they like going to grocery stores. The diners are there, continually deciding what restaurant to visit next. The challenge for you is convincing those diners to visit yours over the competition. Effective restaurant promotion ideas help you achieve that goal. Here are six campaigns and strategies that can draw customers and, ultimately, increase sales:

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Billboards vs. Grocery Cart Advertising: What's More Effective For Your Local Business?

By Anna Ruby on 11/21/17 9:00 AM

Do you remember the last time you saw a billboard? Perhaps you recall the time of day or even the location of the advertisement. But chances are, you aren’t able to recite the message, content, or brand that was being advertised. If you’re speeding by a billboard on the freeway at 60 miles per hour, it’s only natural to miss the value of the service. What’s more, daily media and ad exposure is at an all-time high. Some sources show that the average adult is exposed to 362 ads per day.

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Auto Shop Advertising Tips: How to Bring In Extra Customers In The Fall/Winter

By Anna Ruby on 11/17/17 8:30 AM

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3 Auto Shop Advertising Campaigns That Win Customers

By Anna Ruby on 11/15/17 8:30 AM

Automotive shops are often the anchor of a local community. Whether you’re changing their oil or detailing their cars, your neighbors vest unparalleled trust in you and your mechanics. They rely on your shop to keep their vehicles up and running. And while you may be the best in the business, without marketing and advertising, it’s tough to spread the word and grow your business.

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5 Cart Advertising Examples That'll Keep You Top of Mind

By Anna Ruby on 11/9/17 8:30 AM

Did you know that the average shopper spends 43 minutes in the grocery store per trip? What’s more, they visit local stores an average of 1.7 times per week. For small business owners, this means that advertising in grocery stores has the potential to reach your consumers more than an hour per week and more than 80 times per year.

Those looking to leverage this power should look no further than grocery cart advertising. Unlike other marketing methods, cart advertising is quite simple for small business owners.

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3 Restaurant Coupon Examples That Fill Seats

By Anna Ruby on 11/6/17 7:41 AM

It’s 8:00 pm on a Friday night, and your restaurant is packed from the bar to your booths. You have a book of reservations, and it’s standing room only. You make your rounds in the dining room; interact with everyone from families to young couples; and find them eating and drinking, laughing, and smiling. Nothing is more satisfying for a restaurant owner than a bustling, busy Friday night. The contrary is quite true, as well. Nothing is more debilitating and desolate than an empty dining room.

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Grocery Store Advertising: Two Techniques to Help Build Your Customer List

By Anna Ruby on 11/1/17 8:17 AM

Who doesn’t love an expertly cooked, professionally prepared meal at a local restaurant? While dining at a restaurant is generally considered an enjoyable experience, 71 percent of Americans say they cook at home to save money. What’s more, 57 percent say that going to restaurants is a luxury. People need to eat. So, shopping for groceries is the next logical step.

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The Psychology of Coupons: Why Do Customers Still Use Them?

By Anna Ruby on 10/24/17 9:00 AM

The coupon is not dead. Far from it—most research shows that the number of Americans who use coupons and other offers regularly tops 90 percent. In the midst of our digital age, the chance to save money still appeals to consumers, even when the method to do so is a paper coupon.

The question that must then be asked: Why do customers still use coupons? Consumers’ habits may change over time, but this area hasn’t. Understanding the psychology of coupons can greatly help in developing and maintaining a successful marketing strategy for your business. Here are some reasons why coupons remain a powerful force in today’s retail environment:

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The Best Advertising Techniques for Small Businesses

By Anna Ruby on 10/19/17 8:56 AM

As small business owners, you’re busy ... to say the least. Between balancing planning and strategizing, accounting and financing, and customer service and human resources, your plate is usually full—any given day. And, despite the fact that you probably understand the importance of marketing and advertising, more often than not these efforts are overlooked.

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The Difference Between Groupon and Coupon Advertising

By Anna Ruby on 10/17/17 8:38 AM

Groupon was a commercial darling in the early 2010s, and though its popularity has cooled over the years, it remains a consideration for restaurants and other local businesses that are looking to increase their customer base.

Groupon, along with similar services such as LivingSocial (which Groupon recently purchased) and locally focused deal websites that may be available in your city, offers consumers a chance to receive value from a business, which in turn can benefit the business sponsoring the deal. Sound familiar? Coupon advertising’s goal is the same: Offer value to draw customers.

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Accomplishing Success

By Doug Endsley on 10/13/17 8:00 AM

Every business owner has to start somewhere. IndoorMedia's CEO, Doug Endsley, started his career working in fast food and moved his way up to become the founder of the nation's largest in-store advertising company. In our Business Growth Leadership Series, Doug discusses the events that led to his current success and how today's entrepreneurs can learn from his decades of experience.

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Drive More Local Customers: 10 Small Business Marketing Ideas

By Anna Ruby on 10/5/17 8:30 AM

If you’re a small-business owner, you know that local customers are the foundation of your success. By winning over the hearts (and wallets) of your area’s customer base, you can guarantee success in the foreseeable future. To do so, however, you must drive traffic to your business.

As a small-business owner, you also know that your marketing and advertising budget is often low. Think that running a successful marketing campaign requires a fortune? Think again. It’s entirely possible to drive more local business on a shoestring budget.

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What’s the Best Way to Advertise a New Restaurant?

By Anna Ruby on 10/4/17 8:30 AM

Opening a restaurant isn’t the gloom-and-doom proposition some people portray it as. For years, a statistic has been tossed around that a whopping 90 percent of new restaurants fail in the first year. However, more recent research has discovered that the failure rate is only about 17 percent—around the same rate for small businesses in general.

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6 Ways Restaurants Increase Customer Loyalty

By Anna Ruby on 10/2/17 9:00 AM

Repeat customers are essential to the success of most restaurants. A National Restaurant Association study found repeat customers comprised:

  • 71 percent of sales at quick-service restaurants
  • 68 percent of sales at fast-casual restaurants
  • 64 percent of sales at casual-dining restaurants
  • 63 percent of sales at family-dining restaurants
  • 51 percent of sales at fine-dining restaurants

Getting diners in the door is a big challenge; convincing them to return is just as challenging. A goal to increase customer loyalty focuses on recognizing and rewarding new customers as well as those who are regulars—and every type of customer in between. You simply won’t be successful unless you can achieve this goal.

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Cartvertising and Receipt Coupons: Two Ways to Advertise in Your Grocery Store

By Anna Ruby on 9/28/17 8:30 AM

Marketing and advertising a small business is an essential component of attracting new customers and retaining existing ones. However, with so many mediums and media available, it can be tough to discern which methods drive results and are the most bang for your buck. On one hand, traditional advertising is expensive. On the other, digital advertising can be tough to maintain and unpredictable.

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3 Tactics Fast Food Restaurants Use to Increase Sales

By Anna Ruby on 9/22/17 8:11 AM

From pizza to French fries to coffee, is there anything more uniquely American than fast food? Whether on a family road trip, or on a quick lunch break downtown, fast food is unequivocally ingrained into the American experience. It’s also an insanely lucrative industry. Not only does this segment generate a global revenue of more than $570 billion, it is expected to have an annual growth of 2.5 percent for the next several years.

So, what does this mean for fast food franchise owners?

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How Grocery Store Receipts Drive Customers to Your Business

By Anna Ruby on 9/15/17 8:08 AM

No matter how you look at it, your customers are the bread and butter of your small business. You could be a master of your craft, but without a solid group of consumers—both new and return—your services will never gain the recognition they deserve.

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Local Business Advertising: Turning Your Business into a Local Brand

By Anna Ruby on 9/14/17 9:00 AM

Though the odds seem stacked against small businesses, many do quite well for themselves. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, two-thirds of new businesses last at least two years, half make it to five years, and a third make it to a decade. Although there is no magic formula for success, one strategy can provide a boost that complements all your other efforts to reach 10 years and beyond: local business advertising.

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3 Newbie Mistakes in Advertising Your Fast Casual Restaurant

By Anna Ruby on 9/7/17 9:35 AM

As a fast-casual restaurant owner, you wear many hats. Your primary concern is ensuring your guests leave your restaurant with a smile on their face after enjoying a quick, yet high-quality meal. Hopefully, from there, they’ll share their experience with their family and friends. Maybe, they’ll even leave a positive review on social media.

However, while you’re catering to every need of your guests, you’re also juggling what seems to be hundreds of other daily tasks. From managing employees, to maintaining your books, to handling supply and logistics, things can get tiresome. And when the day is over, the last thing you want to do is think about your marketing strategy.

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Auto Repair Advertising Ideas to Grow Your Business

By Anna Ruby on 8/31/17 8:48 AM

You may be your city’s most proficient, skilled mechanic. However, if you’re unable to market your auto repair shop, your efforts are for nothing. Just because you’re technically good at your job, it doesn’t mean you’re equipped for the marketing and strategy side of things. You still need to draw customers to your garage.

This classic small-business owner scenario is shared by many auto shop owners. And it’s understandable. You’re stretched thin and often do not have the time for research and marketing—so these efforts go by the wayside.

To help illustrate what marketing methods really work, here are some tried-and-true auto repair advertising ideas to attract customers and grow your business.

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6 Grocery Store Coupon Ads That Outperform The Rest

By Anna Ruby on 8/29/17 10:00 AM

Consumers can’t resist a good deal, and they are always open to trying something new when given the chance.  Research by RetailMeNot discovered that 80 percent of people are likely to visit a new restaurant if offered a promotion. Give consumers a coupon, and they are more likely to use it at your restaurant; with any luck, they will be impressed by your food and service and return. You only need to get them in the door…

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Grocery Cart Advertising: Is It Right for My Business?

By Anna Ruby on 8/24/17 1:00 PM

Finding affordable yet reliable and proven advertising methods is a challenge for small businesses. Not only is advertising expensive, but it can be tough to build brand awareness while targeting a specific audience. Successful marketing has reach—but it often comes at a steep price. This often leaves auto shop and other small-business owners to fend for themselves when looking for affordable advertising solutions that provide maximum return on investment.

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8 Restaurant Advertising Tips for Filling Seats in the Fall Season

By Anna Ruby on 8/22/17 11:00 AM

September is a tough month for restaurants. In 2014, Businessweek reported that the month known for kids being back in school, the football season resuming, and a great Earth, Wind & Fire song is also the worst for casual dining. The rest of fall isn’t exactly great for restaurants, either.

A key to overcoming the fall slowdown is to get creative with advertising and marketing. Here are eight restaurant advertising tips for filling your tables this autumn:

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Online vs. Print Advertising: What's Right for Your Auto Shop

By Anna Ruby on 8/18/17 1:00 PM

The debate remains heated between online and print advertising in 2017. Auto shops and other small businesses find themselves in the middle of this debate, wondering which marketing channels they should focus on. As a business owner, you might hear that “print is dead” and “online is your only smart option” in 2017. On the other hand, you might hear that online advertising doesn’t deliver as great an impact as you might think, because audiences are sick of popup and banner ads.

So what’s the answer? Various elements in the online versus print advertising debate are different for auto shops than for other local small businesses such as restaurants, hair salons, or real estate agents. Here are 3 things you should consider when weighing online versus print advertising and what’s right for your auto shop:

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Coupon Advertising: 3 Ways to Reach Your Next Customer

By Anna Ruby on 8/17/17 10:08 AM

Think that coupon advertising is obsolete in the digital age? Think again. Despite the fact that technology impacts nearly every aspect of business, people still love a deal. While many assume that deal-hunters and coupon-clippers are the only ones looking for a bargain, according to a survey by Visa, 72 percent of Americans who earn more than $125,000 use coupons.

What does this mean? That consumers of all types still harness the money-saving energy of coupons. Also, a surefire way to inspire brand loyalty means reaching your consumers in areas they frequent, such as a local supermarket chain.

As an illustration of three ways to reach and influence your next customers to become repeat buyers, consider these creative methods on leveraging coupon advertising.

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5 Psychology Tricks for Grocery Store Advertising

By Anna Ruby on 8/10/17 9:04 AM

You’re walking aimlessly around the grocery store in search of something for dinner. You’ve come unprepared and hungry, so you impulsively fill your basket with a variety of appealing options, from frozen French fries to a pint of ice cream. Sound familiar? You aren’t alone.

Most of us have wandered down the aisles of our local grocery store and spent more than what we’ve budgeted. In fact, supermarkets are actually designed to draw customers in and encourage them to purchase products they may or may not need.

From strategically placing products in areas that inspire consumers to buy to harnessing the power of coupon advertising, grocery store chains take numerous approaches to influence how consumers purchase their products.

To help illustrate how psychology and decision-making influences how consumers shop for groceries, consider these five tricks that businesses implement.

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10 Things You Should Know About Promoting Your Restaurant

By Anna Ruby on 8/8/17 10:00 AM


Launching a restaurant, and building and maintaining its success over the years, requires more than just serving good food. In their rush to open their business, many restaurant owners overlook the importance of hiring outstanding employees, working with reliable vendors, creating the appropriate atmosphere for customers, and other key considerations essential for success.

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3 Things That Keep Restaurant Owners up at Night

By Anna Ruby on 8/2/17 9:14 AM

As a restaurant owner, you know that sleep can be hard to come by. From closing your doors late at night to being on call at all times of the day, running a restaurant is the ultimate full-time job. Even when you do find time for sleep, there are things that will inevitably keep you tossing and turning before you drift off.

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The Biggest Misconceptions About Coupon Advertising

By Anna Ruby on 8/1/17 8:14 AM

Think that user-generated reviews on social media platforms such as Facebook and Yelp are the top factor behind consumers’ restaurant selections? Think again.

Despite the fact that you operate a restaurant in a hyperconnected, digitally driven society, recent research shows that deals and special offers still drive more than one-third of the conversation on where to eat out. Compare that to reviews, which only influenced 14 percent of diners, and it becomes clear that these proven promotional methods work.

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The 3 Most Common Marketing Mistakes of New Restaurants

By Anna Ruby on 7/27/17 8:00 AM

It’s an exciting time to be a restaurant owner, as industry sales are expected to reach $799 billion in 2017, the eighth consecutive year of growth. This number indicates a strong economy—but it also suggests high competition. From managing vendors and employees to ensuring that seats are filled, opening a new restaurant in a crowded, competitive market requires innovation and dedication.

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The Top 7 Blogs/Sites for Restaurant Marketing to Follow

By Anna Ruby on 7/27/17 7:07 AM

The trials and tribulations of owning and managing a restaurant are difficult enough. Between inventory, employee wages, kitchen supplies, and utility costs, keeping a restaurant afloat requires hard work and late nights. While many restaurant owners are aware of the benefits of marketing—including promotional and coupon advertising—they simply don’t have enough time to research the latest trends.

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9 Types of Local Advertising That Auto Shops Use to Gain New Business

By Anna Ruby on 7/26/17 9:33 AM

Cars powertrains are built more durably than ever before, and that keeps vehicle owners repairing their otherwise perfectly fine vehicles rather than cutting and running at the first sign of car trouble. In fact, the average age of cars on the road reached 11.6 years in 2016. That’s good news for auto shops, which are enjoying and can continue to expect a steady stream of new and repeat business for the foreseeable future.

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What the Most Successful Fast-Serve Restaurants Know That You Don’t

By Anna Ruby on 7/26/17 8:38 AM

Fast-serve restaurants are quite a force in the food industry. From traditional quick-service chains to the booming fast-casual segment (which grew an impressive 10.4 percent in 2015), some of the most successful restaurants in the world fall into the fast-serve category. Moreover, many local fast-serve restaurants, whether they are part of a franchise group or just independent mom-and-pop stores with a strong customer base in their communities, are also quite successful. Even during difficult economic times, people still enjoy the convenience of not cooking and want their meals quickly, making the fast-serve industry a strong industry even in an economic downturn.

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5 Bad Habits in Launching Restaurant Advertising Campaigns

By Anna Ruby on 7/26/17 8:37 AM

Restaurants of all sizes, from the largest fast-food chains down to the independent coffee shop on the corner, invest time, effort, and money in advertising. In 2013, Statista reported that American restaurants collectively spent $6.4 billion on advertising. A natural question to ask is, how much of that $6.4 billion was wisely spent? Large chains can afford restaurant advertising campaign missteps; small, local restaurants cannot.

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