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What Detroit Consumers Need To Know Now About Your Small Business

Aug 12, 2020 7:45:34 AM / by Larry Julius

There is good news for Metro Detroit retailers and restaurants.

As a result of the pandemic, one-third of consumers indicate they will pay a premium for local brands and products, according to a recent study by Ernst & Young

However, before consumers will buy from a local business in Dearborn, St. Clair Shores, Farmington Hills, or any town in-between, they must know they can do so without risking their health.

Advertising is the only practical way to let Southeast Michigan shoppers and diners know about the precautions and practices your small business has taken to reduce potential health threats.

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Topics small business, small business owner, best way to advertise, restaurant marketing, restaurant advertising, retail, retailer, retail sales, retail store, restaurants, writing a commercial, small business marketing, small business advertising, effective advertising

Detroit Retailers Prepare For $468 Million Back-To-School Season

Jul 23, 2020 7:03:42 AM / by Larry Julius

Based on projections from the National Retail Federation, Southeast Michigan parents are expected to spend $468 million to equip K-12 kids for the upcoming school year. If so, then this shopping spree will be 29% bigger than last year's and the biggest take since 2012.

“By any measure, this is an unprecedented year with great uncertainty, including how students will get their education this fall whether they are in kindergarten or college,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay says.

“Most parents don’t know whether their children will be sitting in a classroom or in front of a computer in the dining room, or a combination of the two. But they do know the value of an education and are navigating uncertainty and unknowns so that students are prepared."

Along with pencils, paper, pens, and knapsacks, the NRF survey says 63 percent of K-12 families expect to buy computers and other electronics this year, up from 54% last year, and they expect to spend more at an average $274.44, up from $203.44 last year. The $71 difference accounts for the largest share of the overall increase in average spending of almost $93.

Also, because many parents are unsure if learning will take place at school or at home, back-to-school spending this year is expected to include home furnishings such as desks, chairs, and lamps.

To claim a meaningful share of this year's booming back-to-school economy, local retailers will need to advertise to let parents know that their stores are open, it is safe to shop, and the needed supplies are in stock.

By any metric, the best way to reach these parents is on Detroit radio.

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Topics millennials, radio advertising, retail, store traffic, retailer, retail sales, retail store, advertise on radio, back-to-school, millennial parents

Advertising In Detroit: Consumers Will Pay More For Sustainable

Jul 14, 2020 7:02:00 AM / by Larry Julius

This year, according to Nielsen, 3.5 million Metro Detroit consumers will spend $1.9 billion on eco-friendly goods and services. Sales for sustainable products have grown 20% since 2014, a trend expected to continue into 2021.

Tensie Whelan and Randi Kronthal-Sacco of the New York University Stern Center for Sustainable Business write in the Harvard Business Review, "Consumers are voting with their dollars against unsustainable brands. The legacy companies that will thrive are those that accept this shift and are willing to pivot.” 

For Southeast Michigan small business owners who are skeptical that sustainability affects purchase decisions, retail analyst Stacey Widlitz provided this advice, recently, in Forbes.

"Retailers only need to look to IBM's recent study, in association with the National Retail Federation, to understand just how fast consumer priorities are changing," says Ms. Widlitz. "Findings from the study revealed nearly 60% of consumers surveyed are willing to change their shopping habits to reduce environmental impact. For the nearly 80% of respondents who said sustainability is important to them over 70% would pay a premium of 35% on average."

To compete for a share of consumers' spending on green goods and services requires local small business owners to advertise.

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Topics small business, millennials, small business owner, radio advertising, retail, retailer, retail sales, retail store, advertise on radio, small business marketing, small business advertising, green products, sustainable, eco-friendly

Detroit Furniture Retailers Expect A Post-Pandemic Rebound

Jul 9, 2020 4:24:34 PM / by Larry Julius

Before the onset of COVID-19, more than 568,000 Metro Detroit households were planning to spend $1.2 billion on furniture, according to Nielsen. Unfortunately, many of those plans were put on pause as consumers sheltered in place to help slow the spread of the virus.

A recent study by Elevate | SmithGeiger suggests that the fortunes of home furnishing retailers, however, are about to improve.

According to the study, 32% of consumers who had been planning to buy furniture will do so within three months of the pandemic easing. Fifty percent will do so within six months. The numbers for mattress shoppers are even stronger.

To capture a significant share of the post-pandemic sales of furniture and mattress will require retailers to advertise. The most effective way to reach the customers who are ready to buy is on Detroit radio.

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Topics small business, small business owner, best way to advertise, retail, retailer, retail sales, retail store, small business marketing, mattress, small business advertising, furniture

Detroit Small Business: Appliance Stores Prepare For Rebound

Jun 16, 2020 4:15:40 PM / by Larry Julius

During lockdown, Southeast Michigan consumers have been postponing the purchase of major appliances.  Despite the pause in buying, however, local shoppers are still expected to spend $237 million this year on ovens, stoves, refrigerators, freezers, washing machines, dryers, and dishwashers.

Here's how appliance sales in the Metro Detroit area will breakdown by category:

  • Cooking: $63,400,000
  • Refrigerator/Freezer: $59,900,000
  • Laundry: $49,100,000
  • Other: $63,000,000

Based on traditional buying patterns, at least 60% of all major appliance sales will occur between now and December.

To capture a larger share of all this spending will require local appliance dealers to advertise.

“Think you have a great product?” asks the U.S. Small Business Administration. “Unfortunately, no one’s going to know about it unless you advertise.”

The SBA goes on to say, “Advertising, if done correctly, can do wonders for your product sales, and you know what that means: more revenue and more success for your business”. 

By almost any measure, advertising on Detroit radio is the best choice for local appliance store owners.

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Topics small business, small business owner, radio advertising, best way to advertise, consumer spending, retail, return on investment, ROI, retailer, retail sales, retail store, advertise on radio, appliance store

Advertising In Detroit: Time For Local Jewelry Stores To Shine

Jun 13, 2020 8:26:58 AM / by Larry Julius

Despite the pandemic, Metro Detroit consumers are expected to spend $224 million on fine jewelry this year. Based on projections from IBISWorld, here's what will be purchased:

  • $94 million worth of diamonds
  • $33 million worth of watches
  • $22 million worth of gold
  • $26 million worth of pearls and gemstones
  • $47 million in other goods and services

Southeast Michigan business owners will now have an easier time capturing a bigger share of jewelry expenditures as a monster competitive force disappears.

This week, Signet, the largest jewelry retailer in the country, announced that by December, it would be closing over 380 stores.  Signet's brands familiar to Detroit consumers include Kay, Jared, Zales, and Piercing Pagoda.

To successfully compete for the void created by fewer Signet stores, local retailers will need to advertise, especially between now and the end of the year. This is when 63% of all fine-jewelry sales traditionally occur.

By any metric, the best way to reach local jewelry buyers is by advertising on Detroit radio.

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Topics small business, small business owner, radio advertising, best way to advertise, consumer spending, retail, retailer, retail sales, retail store, advertise on radio, jewelry stores, bridal, wedding

Detroit Radio Listeners Will Power The Post-Pandemic Recovery

Jun 10, 2020 2:02:11 PM / by Larry Julius

At the dawn of 2020, Metro Detroit small business owners were expecting the area's retail economy to expand by 4.1%. This optimism was stoked by the National Retail Federation's chief economist who said, "Consumers remain upbeat and have the confidence to spend, and the steady wage growth that has come with the strong job market is fueling their spending. The state of the consumer is very healthy."

By February, however, the country entered into a COVID-19 induced recession. Then, to slow the spread of the pandemic, on March 24, the Governor of Michgian locked the state down. This brought the Detoirt area's $78,3 billion retail economy to a standstill.

As stores, restaurants, and offices in the Detroit area begin to re-open, consumers' appetite for spending is returning. According to Nielsen, loyal radio listeners are very likely to be first in line at the cash registers.

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Topics small business, small business owner, best way to advertise, consumer spending, retail, retailer, retail sales, automotive, retail store, corona, coronavirus, covid 19, reopen, advertise on radio, recovery

Best Way To Re-Introduce A Detroit Small Business To Consumers

Jun 5, 2020 2:29:15 PM / by Larry Julius

Metro Detroit small business owners are learning that 're-opening' may not be an appropriate word for the challenges they face as the Coronavirus crisis winds down.  A better term might be 're-introducing'.

Since the Governor of Michigan shuttered the state on March 23 to slow the spread of COVID-19, Detroit area consumers have discovered new ways to buy the goods and services they need.  It's now the burden of local business owners to lure these customers back. The first step is re-introduction.

On August 20, 1920, WWJ signed-on as the first radio station serving Southeast Michigan. Since then, local business owners have used radio advertising to introduce themselves successfully to new customers. Radio has also helped these businesses survive recessions, depressions, world wars, tornados, and blizzards. By any metric, advertising on Detroit radio remains the most effective tactic a small business owner can use post-pandemic, as well.

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Topics small business, small business owner, radio advertising, best way to advertise, retail, return on investment, ROI, retailer, retail sales, retail store, reopen, advertise on radio, dayparts, time of day, writing a commercial, commercial length

Traffic In Detroit Is Picking-Up. Is Your Small Business Ready?

Jun 3, 2020 12:25:28 PM / by Larry Julius

More than 91% of Detroit area households own at least one vehicle. 

Pre-pandemic, 88% of workers spent, on average, 58 minutes every weekday in these cars commuting to-and-from their jobs.  

On their way to work, many of these drivers would contribute to  Southeast Michigan's $78.3 billion retail economy by visiting the convenience stores, coffeehouses, auto repair centers, gas stations, daycares, grocery stores, or hundreds of other businesses they passed.

At lunchtime, these same cars would take their owners to restaurants, dentist appointments, nail appointments, barbershops, and on an infinite number of other errands.

On the weekends, these vehicles filled the parking lots of hardware stores, furniture stores, car dealers, appliance stores, bowling alleys, movie theatres, and nightclubs, 

Then on March 23, when the Governor of Michigan shut down the state to slow the spread of COVID-19, traffic came to a standstill and so did the spending.

There are strong indications, though, that in the Detroit area, roads are filling up again.

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Topics small business, small business owner, radio advertising, best way to advertise, consumer spending, retail, return on investment, ROI, store traffic, retailer, retail sales, retail store, in-car audio, vehicle traffic

What Happens When A Detroit Small Business Stops Advertising?

May 28, 2020 7:03:17 AM / by Larry Julius

Metro Detroit small business owners may perceive the continuation of advertising as a luxury right now. This is especially so when compared to the necessity for covering the costs of utilities, inventory, payroll, and rent.

Before pulling the plug, though, business owners from Troy to Monroe must consider the consequences of 'going dark', a marketing term which means to stop advertising.

"According to our analysis, short-term decisions to go dark create significant risk for long-term revenue," says Ameneh Atai, Senior Vice President of Commercial Strategy at Nielsen. "This affects both incremental revenue and base sales."

"Our database of long-term effects models suggests that cutting ad spending for the rest of 2020 could lead up-to 11% revenue decrease in 2021," says Ms. Atai. "It could take three to five years of solid and consistent brand building to recover from an extended dark period of media."

"We have a ton of evidence in our historical analysis," adds Nielsen's Tsvetan Tsvetkov, Senior Vice President of Agency and Advertiser Solutions. "Companies that step away from advertising efforts for a period of time, whether it's a couple of quarters or a full year or longer lose the momentum they have built over time the minute they stop. To recover takes a long, long time."

To avoid the economic risks of going dark, local small business owners need to make sure every dollar spent on advertising produces solid returns.  By most marketing metrics, advertising on Detroit radio could prove to be the best option.

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Topics small business, small business owner, radio advertising, best way to advertise, reach, reach and frequency, retail, return on investment, ROI, retailer, retail sales, retail store, advertising reach

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