I have only met about three company owners who have broken even on the phone book ads. It really depends on the type of business you choose. An accountant might do very well with an ad, but most service businesses develop their new client base through referrals. Ads can range from $125 to $1,000 a month. How many clients would you have to gain to make the ad cost effective.
Advertising in newspapers is also very expensive and doesn’t often give the financial return which will justify the expense. It is well known in the advertising industry that a person needs to see an ad 17 times before they take action. The average 2 x 3 ad costs about $125. If you were to get one client from the ad, you would have to earn $2,125 from that client.
Direct mail is extremely expensive for a start-up. One of my clients spent $10,000 to promote his business within a ten miles radius of his business. First he had to buy to mailing list, print the flyers and hire a mailing house to prepare them for mailing. He didn’t gain a single client from the mailing even after six months. Email marketing is more affordable by far.
Email campaigns can be directed towards your target market and take much less time to produce. It’s difficult to uncover accurate statistics, but for those I know who use email consistently, they seem to achieve better results than anything else they have tried.
My suggestion is that you learn to keep company with those who support you in your new endeavor! And for those who don’t, keep your time with them at a minimum.
The most important thing you can do is to stay focused on your goals and stay positive. Try to avoid anyone and everything that is negative.