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Looking Good in Print and on The Web - Guerrilla Style

Oct 12, 2007
As a small business owner, one of your biggest challenges is marketing your product and/or your website. You can play it safe by doing exactly what everyone else is doing. Or you can embrace the low-cost, high-impact Guerrilla Marketing tactics advocated by Jay Conrad Levinson.

Guerrilla Marketers rely more on imagination than large marketing budgets when it comes to creating memorable and effective campaigns. They know that details matter, and that there are 10 cardinal rules which, if followed with zeal, will make every marketing effort stand head and shoulders above the competition. Adopting 10 cardinal rules will guarantee that print materials and web copy will stand out from the competition and yield big results.

1. Consistency. Avoid the temptation to go wild with type faces, sizes, and colors. Just because you can do something does not mean you should do it. Create an identity and then stick with it. Customers use all sorts of shortcuts when looking for their favorite products, and colors and type style are two of the easiest for them to latch onto.

2. Embrace white space. White space is your friend. White space makes both your print and web copy look clean and easy to read. Having sufficient white space around the edges of your copy also tends to focus the reader's eye directly into your copy.

3. Write in short paragraphs. Keep paragraphs to no more than three or four sentences. Large blocks of unbroken type intimidates readers and causes them to look elsewhere. Two paragraphs of three sentences each are far more effective than one paragraph of six sentences.

4. Make use of subheads. Subheads break long stretches of copy into short, easy-to-digest mini articles. Subheads also provide alternative entry-points into your print or web copy and encourage readers who tend to skim content.

5. Create bullets and lists. Use bullets and numbered paragraphs to break up copy and to highlight and emphasize points. Numbered lists are used when priority matters, and bullets indicate that each point is of equal weight.

6. Align the elements on your page. The layout and structure of your print or web copy are essential to the overall look and feel of your marketing message. If charts, illustrations and photographs appear randomly dropped into your copy then your entire effort will have a haphazard feel to it which will not engender confidence. Make sure that the borders of all elements are aligned with each other and with the column structure that supports your page.

7. Less is more. Again, just because you can do something does not necessarily mean that you should do it. Don't go overboard with graphics or with splashes of color or distracting borders or unnecessary clipart. Go for a clean, professional look in everything you do.

8. Use UPPER CASE type with restraint. Subheads and headlines set in all upper-case letters are harder to read than headlines and subheads set in lower-case type.

9. Sweat the details. As all Guerrilla Marketers know, the profit is in the details. Awkward sentence spacing, single words or lines at the end of a page, sentence fragments, and misaligned graphics create a sense of sloppiness in the mind of your reader.

10. View it through the eyes of your ideal customer. Always approach your print and web copy (and everything else that you do) through the eyes of your ideal customers who look at everything from the "What's in it for me" perspective.

That old saying that you only have one chance to make a first impression is especially true when it comes to print and web copy. With a website you have approximately 8 seconds in which to grab and hold your potential client's attention. With a print ad or brochure you're lucky if a reader stays with you beyond the first four sentences.

True blue Guerrilla Marketers know how to create a stellar first impression. Focus on these 10 cardinal rules, and you'll likely unleash big results on a shoestring budget.
About the Author
Certified Marketing Spitfire Leslie Hamp is the creator of the 'Fast Track to Marketing Mastery' program. To learn more about the step-by-step program, and to sign up for a fr*ee Marketing Mastery Success Kit, visit www.boostyourbottomline.com
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