What's on Tap...
A brew of marketing and advertising news for your insatiable knowledge palette

Avoid These 6 FSI Mistakes and Earn Big This Memorial Day

Posted by Jenna Bruce on Wed, Apr 12, 2017 @ 08:00 AM

When it comes to insider marketing, there is no more effective option than insert media. Think about it: getting your offer inside of an already-trusted and beloved newspaper means customers will automatically see your company and offer in the best possible light.

With Memorial Day weekend around the corner, it’s a good idea to step up your FSI game. With this in mind, here are 6 of the most common mistakes advertisers make with their insert campaigns. Avoid these at all costs to earn big this summer.

  1. Not Testing

Many marketers think that testing is not important, or they assume their budget isn’t big enough. But the truth is, you don’t need to distribute millions of pieces to determine if the channel will work for your company.

Test small.

You can minimize your risk by distributing enough to get an accurate gauge. For example, you can test four different programs with 25,000 in each. This is typically a better and more telling way to go than testing a single program with 100,000.

To determine which programs to test, keep a couple of things in mind:

  • Demographics of the program
  • The total universe of the program – if the test is successful, you want to know you can roll out effectively.

Be sure to vary your tests in terms of audience and category. It’s never a good idea to test a single category or a single audience. The more you vary your testing, the better your odds of finding success.

And one final note regarding testing (can you tell testing is important) – one successful test does not a successful campaign make. Don’t do a full roll out just because one test proved successful. Take a bit of time to make sure your positive results are in fact positive before committing to a big roll out.

If you start testing now, you should be able to confidently roll out your FSI campaign for Memorial Day Weekend, one of the biggest shopping weekends of the year.

  1. Not Coding

Do you always code your inserts? If not, how do you gauge if the channel and/or campaign was successful? Each program should have its own unique code, as should each month within a particular program. Coding helps you keep track of your success so you can make every advertising dollar count.

  1. Not Standing Out from the Crowd

You can’t rest on the newspaper’s laurels, you’ve got to stand out on your own. It’s easy for your FSI to get lost in the package, so use the entire space to your advantage. The average maximum dimensions for an insert program are 5-1/2″ x 8 1/2″. Why risk getting lost in the package with a 3 ½” x 5” insert. As they say: Go big or go home.

  1. Not Communicating with Your Media Buyer

You’ve got to share detailed information with your media buyer about the efficacy of your campaigns. And the more details you offer, the better able they will be to return qualified program recommendations. A program may not have worked at $45/M but it may at $30/M. Your buyer won’t be able to adjust on your behalf if all you say is, “It didn’t work.” Be specific and share as much as you can.

  1. Not Optimizing for Mobile

If you are going to include a mobile link in your insert’s offer then you’ll need to make sure your website is optimized for mobile browsing. This should be a no-brainer at this point but we still see so many companies who have neglected to optimize for mobile.

  1. Not Considering Lead Times

Most insert media campaigns need to be created and handed over weeks in advance of distribution. Understand that collation, production and delivery all take time, so if you want to get your inserts in the Memorial Day weekend paper, better get started… NOW!

There is no denying FSIs are a great way to get your offer in front of the right crowd and boost your revenue. Just be sure to avoid these 6 mistakes so you can taste success this summer season.

Topics: print advertising, frequency of newspapers ads, free standing inserts, preprint