You’re in the Hot Dog Biz–How to Create a Sizzling Flier!Firouzeh Tahbaz
It’s time to bring the sizzle back to your hot dog business! To attract customers to your cart, you’re going to need a killer flier that will draw people like bees to honey. Follow these steps below to create an eye-catching flier your customers won’t be able to resist!
Step 1: Figure out who your target audience is
Your flier needs to be visually appealing and it also needs to provide ample information. This means you need to consider your customer base before starting any design. Ask yourself: Who are my customers? How old are they? Where do they work? Where do they live? What kinds of things do they enjoy doing for fun? Do I know any of these people personally, or could I contact them for customer feedback and recommendations? Remember, you can’t please everyone so go after your target market instead. For example, if you’re trying to cater to children living near an amusement park then potential customers will be parents with kids, who like amusement parks and may have disposable income that is willing to spend on their family during their outing.
Step 2: Come up with an attention-grabbing headline for your flier
How can you come up with an attention-grabbing headline for your flier? You want something snappy, fun, and enticing that will get your customers’ mouths watering. Start by brainstorming headlines until you find one that grabs your attention. Then check out these do’s and don’ts for creating a catchy headline: Do use words like free, now, or today. Don’t overuse exclamation points. Do try using puns or rhymes. Don’t be too wordy; keep it short and sweet. Do make sure it makes sense; if not, no one will understand what you’re trying to say. Don’t think so hard about coming up with a creative headline that you forget about getting your point across quickly and clearly (in 30 words or less). Remember, people are busy; they don’t have time to read through long blocks of text on their way to work in the morning or on their lunch break at noon.
Step 3: Feature Specific Benefits
Benefits sell. Always use your strongest benefits first, beginning with What’s In It For Me? (WIIFM). If you are setting up an event, for example, don’t just say Come have fun at our free concert; it is on Friday night at City Park. That doesn’t tell them anything about why they should come or what they will get out of it. Instead try something like: Free concert featuring country star Chuck Norris on Friday night at City Park. Now you have their attention: The fact that it’s free gives them WIIFM, and if they like country music they might be interested in hearing a local legend perform. (Bonus points if you mention how many people came last year.)
Step 4: Lead them through each point you make
Begin your paragraph with a topic sentence and, as you proceed through your paragraph, transition into each new point. For example: I was thinking about going on a diet, Sally thought, staring down at her hips. She tapped her foot impatiently and looked up at her bedroom ceiling. I need something that will not only help me lose weight but also feel good. As she stood up and reached for her jeans, she thought of an ad she had seen on TV… And so forth. Your readers can follow along easily, because you’ve made it easy for them to follow along by leading them through each point or idea you make. You’ll find that when writing any type of business communication — whether it’s a professional email or letter — is that if you lead your reader clearly and directly from one idea to another (rather than jumping around all over), they’ll be able to more easily follow along with what you’re saying, which makes writing easier overall. So how do we create paragraphs?
Step 5: Write a short paragraph about why you are the best vendor around
If you’re excited about selling hot dogs and believe wholeheartedly that you can provide something no one else does—in other words, if you really have passion for what you do—people will be able to tell. You don’t need to try too hard; just include some information about yourself and your business. Don’t worry if it’s not 100% accurate or polished—it doesn’t need to be. As long as your flier looks nice, is easily readable, and doesn’t look cheap or thrown together at all, that’s what matters. Now get out there and sell those dogs!
Step 6: Make it visual and fun
Above all, your flier needs to be interesting and attention-grabbing. Go wild with color, fun fonts, and graphics. Make it fun, because if it’s not fun it won’t get passed around and people won’t want to come to see you at events. Set up an email list too so that you can send out deals or specials only available for those on your list. People love exclusive offers. You can do something as simple as including some kind of coupon or deal on your flier that is only good for one day or one week (like a buy one get one free special). Be creative and have fun with it! And don’t forget, have your business information ready.
You have some great ideas and you’re ready to get started—but how? First, identify your audience. You wouldn’t write an essay for 8th graders like you would for high schoolers. If you don’t know who your target audience is, do some research. Visit websites where your target customers might hang out and look at what they read; pay attention to who comments on articles and how those commenters interact with one another. That will give you some great insight into what kind of writing appeals to your target market. Once you’ve got that figured out, it’s time to start marketing!