Promotion 101

July 20 005While post card dropping has been around for some time, Sub 5 has found that it is a good way to provide valuable information to your target market. I was at the Cranmore Mountain Trail Fest yesterday and passed out over 300 post cards for our Jay Peak Trail Fest. The reason that I am talking about this is that most race directors are open to you promoting your races at theirs. The cost is fairly low, we use small post cards and provide great graphics with only the pertinent information so people have a ‘call to action’ and go on  your race website to find out more about your race and yes, sign up.

Know Your Target Market

The race industry is becoming more and more complicated to navigate when it comes to targeting your potential customer. There was a time when you could tell the runners in your community. They were the scraggly guys that wore Nike running shoes and a singlet on hot summer days and showed up at the track on Wednesdays to do countless intervals. They usually didn’t talk about the races they attended and races had a kind of cult following. Now, there are races and events for all ages and abilities and it is very difficult to tell who is a runner and who isn’t. For example, women hold the lead in regards to participation in 5ks and Half Marathons and the most popular age group is from 35 to 54 while any and all ages compete in the obstacle races. You don’t even have to run to do the obstacle races. The reason that I bring this up is that post card dropping/ or ‘dash board drops’ is effective because you can choose like races to attend and hand deliver your post cards.

Run the Numbers

Whenever you do any marketing it is beneficial to add your costs and check your benefit. You can do a simple cost/ benefit analysis for a post card drop by adding up your mileage (around 50 cents/ mile) meals (I usually hit the fast food chains for a diet coke and cheeseburger), and the cost of your post cards. Then you can make sure that there is a ‘how did you find us’ function on your registration form. Add up all the registrations that you gain from post card drops and subtract your costs. You can tell quickly if you broke even on your endeavor.

Effective/ Efficient

While I provided a quick informational and break even analysis. I find that the more frequently you promote your business the higher chance of getting people at your events. I believe it is said that it takes 4 to 6 times someone sees an ad before they purchase the product. Therefore, post card drop as frequently as possible, have your race committee do the same and do this consistently throughout the year and you will reap the benefits.