Putting the ‘you’ in print ads

According to a survey from online small business community Manta, marketing budgets will be the No. 1 priority among small businesses in 2011. While this is a good indication that the economic climate is improving and companies are willing to spend more money, it will also increase the competition for consumers' attention.

Print marketing initiatives are considered to be a more traditional strategy, however businesses are leveraging direct mail, brochure and poster printing to place a physical product in the hands of potential shoppers.

Before a company can even call someone a prospect, its marketing materials must grab a person's eye. Entrepreneur magazine says that a "truly arresting headline and visual element" will help businesses do that.

Furthermore, it needs to either communicate how it will help a reader or announce news of some sort.

"An ad that takes the 'you' point of view and tells readers how they will benefit from your product or service piques and keeps their interest. And if, in addition, it has news value ('Announcing a bold new breakthrough in moisturizers that can make your skin look years younger'), your ad has a better than fighting chance," Entrepreneur explains.