'Awareness' seminar Tuesday

Monday, May 5, 2003

As a business owner, it's your name you want on a potential customer's mind when they are in need of your services. But will it be there? The McCook Daily Gazette is offering a free seminar that will answer that question.

The Top-Of-Mind-Awareness breakfast seminar will be 8-10:30 a.m., Tuesday at the McCook Public Library.

Nationally known speaker and TOMA expert Thomas Ludwig will present findings from a Cullman County research study that surveyed more than 48 business categories.

Sine TOMA began in 1990, Ludwig has consulted more than 500,000 businesses on their advertising and marketing strategies. Before beginning TOMA, he worked with American Consulting Services in its first training program and helped take the Yellow Pages from being the nation's fastest growing advertising medium to a no growth player in the industry.

He also worked in advertising for almost 20 years consulting with businesses about marketing strategies.

The purpose of the TOMA survey is to measure name awareness among Southwest Nebraska and Northwest Kansas customers.

They were asked to name one company in a particular line of business. Companies mentioned were given a TOMA level. A company's high TOMA level indicates customers think of that company when making a buying decision.

Preliminary results indicated more than half of those surveyed could not come up with names to hearing aid sales, landscape contractor or carpet cleaning company.

Ludwig's goal with TOMA is to show business owners how to increase the name-awareness of their company. The TOMA survey conducted for the Gazette can help show you how to be first in the customer's mind.

You know you only spend money with others when you need their product or service. Common sense says the same is true for your customers. The time between your customers' needs is your business life cycle. To be successful, plan your budget to span the typical life-cycle of your business.

For example, grocery stores have a life cycle measured in weeks or days. Air conditioning contractors have one measured in years. Each business is unique, but the only way to succeed is to budget across your life cycle.

Successful businesses don't go for "all at once" advertising budgets. Every day new needs arise, so they get in front of the public regularly. Staying in front is Top-Of-Mind-Awareness, those with the most of it are businesses people call or shop first.

To register for the free seminar call the Gazette at (308)345-4500.

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