================================================
ICB Toll Free (800/888) News by: Judith Oppenheimer, Publisher, ICB Toll Free (800/888) News
Friday March 5 1999 at 01:7:55 PM EST

HOW TO "1-800-FLOWERS" ON A BUDGET

How to extend the life of your advertising, increase calls by 25% or more, and improve the quality of your leads to people who are ready to buy - on a small business budget.

New York, NY US - You've seen the ads - 1 800 FLOWERS, 1 800 DENTIST, 1 800 MATTRESS.

Toll free vanity numbers have launched these companies and others, into name-brand success stories.

800 vanities skyrocket performance for small businesses too. A recent study tested radio advertising with an 800 numeric number versus an 800 vanity number. The results were overwhelming.

The vanity number outperformed the numeric 800 number by 14 to 1, with sixty-seven percent of the calls originating from the same local area code.

Even more surprising, this wasn't for a low-cost item like flowers, but for cars.

The test was performed by an advertising agency for its client, a local car dealership - an advertiser that got its powerhouse vanity number from a shared-use company.

Shared-use companies give small and mid-sized marketers, 800 FLOWERS-level image, visibility and results at small-business prices, by offering vanity 800 numbers on a local and regional basis to customers across the country.

Bundling custom marketing services with use of vanity numbers and locator routing or interactive voice response (IVR), these companies specialize in bringing customers to local businesses.

Applicable vanity number programs, as well as performance, cut across all types of businesses: law firms, real estate brokers and medical practices; car dealerships, contractors, and plumbers; ISP's, veterinarians, therapists, and health clubs... all these and more, reap the benefits of shared-use vanity programs.

Nor does it matter where you're located - performance cuts across all boundaries.

A Hollywood, Florida shared-use customer reports, "We've been able to extend the life of our advertising, help consumers remember how to reach us, and add prestige to our dealership" From Hutchinson, Kansas we hear, "Our calls have increased 25%".

A roofer in Smithtown, New York attributes the growth of his business to his shared-use program, adding, "It puts me on par with the national 800 number-based companies, adding prestige to my advertising." Improved lead quality is another primary benefit, as related by a North Hollywood, California advertiser. "More important [than the tremendous increase in calls] is the quality of the calls: people who are ready to buy."

And an aptly located Bountiful, Utah customer reports, "We watched the call-ins grow from 50 per month to over 200, resulting in 10 additional units sold each month."

For the local or regional business with marketing as well budget constraints on its mind, shared-use opens the door to once unimaginable opportunities to build a brand, and reap brand-level results.

Service-area contracts are always exclusive, so you don't want to wait for the last minute.

You can find the right shared-use company and program for your business in ICB's Toll Free Service Provider Directory, which is located online at www.icbtollfree.com/serproviders.html.

For More Information: Toll Free Service Provider Directory

Author/Correspondent's Profile: Judith Oppenheimer, Publisher, ICB Toll Free (800/888) News


Copyright 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998 All rights reserved by Rainbow Pages, Inc. Updated 6/1/99
Access Business Online's Daily Business Newspaper