Affordable Ad Design

These companies make it easy for small businesses to advertise.

Rather than hiring an ad agency, which typically costs thousands of dollars upfront for creative design, companies like AdReady and MediaBids are making it easier for small businesses to stay competitive in the advertising arena.

Jim Lanier of Lanier Pens was introduced to AdReady, a company that lets you create customized online ads, about six months ago. “What was attractive about AdReady is that we can include photos of our product in the Web ad,” Lanier said. “As a manufacturer of fine writing instruments it’s kind of hard to sell our product when people can’t see a picture of what they are buying. Not everyone wants to buy something from just a text ad.”

When he first started using AdReady, Lanier used one of their formats for his ads and plugged in his information. He later went to a graphic artist and had him make a package of nine different jpeg files to run with his ads. “For me, AdReady was the advertising option that I was missing.” he said. “It seems like a large share of our sales from our website come from AdReady. When people place orders, we can actually track what website they were redirected from.”

Since he’s started using MediaBids, the world’s largest print advertising marketplace, Mike Marenick, president and CEO of L’Avenir SkinCare has saved as much as 75 percent on his magazine advertising. “I’ve been using MediaBids for about a year now, and the one thing that I like is that they don’t try to push me into only buying ads for a special they might have going on,” he said. “The range of publications they have is so broad. My rep has gotten me into a range of magazines, including Golf and Allure.”

Marenick added that he always thought L’Avenir’s market was beauty or some type of fashion publications, but he’s found that just by getting out there into the general public magazines, the company has been able to expand its market as well.

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