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The Cool Bumper Sticker Business

May 30, 2008
A bumper sticker business is one that might grow out of a conversation over a couple of beers at your favourite tavern. Imagine for a moment this scenario: Someone suggests that the owner should sponsor a summer picnic or softball game. The question then comes up as to how to advertise it, and someone suggests bumper stickers. And the basics of a very lucrative business are set in motion.

As you consider this idea for a source of income, your first decision will be whether to first line up people willing to "wear" the bumper stickers on their cars, or the business owners who will want to advertise in this manner.

A good friend of ours started such a business several years ago, and he found it easier to sell the business owner by telling him that 100 to 200 people were all set and willing to wear his bumper sticker advertisement, because such people were known to be in the area.

All this boils down to a recommendation that you talk to your friends, neighbours and co-workers first. Get as many of them as you can to agree to "wear" a bumper sticker. You might offer to pay them $10 for three months, or $5 for six weeks. With inducement of money just to put a bumper sticker on their cars or trucks, you won't have too many turndowns. One person we know runs an ad in his weekly shopper newspaper, advertising the fact that he pays money just for "wearing" a bumper sticker. And of course, don't overlook the pulling power of all the bulletin boards in your area businesses.

This is an ideal business for constant free publicity write-ups in your local newspapers, plus interviews on radio and TV talk shows. At first, you'll want as many people as possible to "wear" bumper sticker ads. What you'll want to stress in any publicity write-ups or media interviews is the fact that you've got the "vehicles for exposure" lined up and organized so that any potential advertiser needs only to give you a call, and you can launch his advertising program immediately.

Next, you check with a number of printers and determine the cost to have bumper stickers made to order. Generally, you should be able to get a thousand bumper stickers for $100 or less, whatever the cost; this initial outlay should be absorbed by your charge to the advertiser.

So let's suppose you've got 100 people lined up to "wear" one of these bumper stickers on their cars for six weeks. Figure the bumper stickers will cost $100, now, the problem of what to charge the advertiser.

It is best practice to charge on a "per car" basis, i.e., on a basis of circulation, as newspapers do. So, you could charge $5 per car per week, with 100 cars. This comes out to $500 per week, or $3,000 total over six weeks, from the advertiser. Subtract $100 for getting the bumper stickers made, and $500 as payment for the cars "wearing" the bumper stickers, and you would end up with a profit picture of $2,400 for those six weeks.

In the beginning, you should be the one calling on potential advertisers and doing all the selling. Once you've got your first program organized and running smoothly, your next step is a natural multiplication of your efforts. Run an ad in your local paper for commission sales people. Brief them on the basics and get them out on the street selling advertisers for you.
About the Author
Uchenna Ani-Okoye is an internet marketing advisor.

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