Local Services and Storefronts
That’s a complicated question, and we’re going to address it as best we can in the next chapter. There’s a ton of experimentation and testing that has to happen before you can start thinking about an ad budget. If you’ve already got some ads going, then our basic suggestion is to start at $10 or $15 per day and see how that goes. If it’s successful, try doubling it for a day and see what happens.
Compete! Surely you have some advantage over your competitors; otherwise, you wouldn’t be in business. Follow the advice in this chapter, make your social media pages look clean and professional, and move forward. Post, engage, and persevere.
You can certainly give it a shot. Keep in mind, though, that a large part of the reason why you may be doing well locally is that you’re selling something that your customers want to be there in person for. On the Web, you’re competing against hundreds or thousands of businesses that are selling most of the same things, and they’ve probably managed to do it at a lower price. If you feel you can compete in that space—if your costumes are so good that you can compete on quality alone—then it’s worth exploring an expansion to ecommerce. This is a big task that involves payment processing (your existing credit card processor will probably work), web design (you’ll probably have to hire that out), web hosting, and product fulfillment (you’ll probably need at least one new employee to help with that). That’s a bit beyond the scope of this book. However, if you’re already set on all of those aspects of ecommerce, just follow the directions in Chapter 4, and keep your online marketing strategy separate from your local strategy.