The go-to advertising for most auctioneers is auctionzip.com. A couple of years ago it did not cost anything to place your auction on that site. They made their money through advertising and upgrades. Suddenly, they announced that it would cost $10.00 to list an auction on that site. Since so many people have been taught to go to that site for auction information, it seemed like a reasonable cost. Then it went to $20.00 and soon it was $30.00. Some are predicting it will be $50.00 by the end of 2019, but no one knows.
This past weekend I completed my 16 hours of continuing education our state requires for auction renewal. One of the things I learned was that the designer of auctionzip.com sold it a few years ago. He signed a non-compete clause which has now expired. He has developed a new site, GoTo Auction, that is very similar to the other site but does not charge to list auctions. I checked out that site last night, and joined. I placed my upcoming auction on that site and was pleased this morning to see that people have already found it.
It might take a while, but I have a feeling more and more auctioneers will go to this new site to advertise their ads. Like me, they will have to advertise on both sites for a while because people are so conditioned to go to the auctionzip site. We will have to teach them about the new site, but perhaps by the end of the year, especially if auctionzip continues to raise their prices, many of us may move all our advertising to the new site.
How long has it been since you taken the time to evaluate the effectiveness of your marketing strategy? There are many ways to market your product or service depending on what it is, but some might be more effective than others. Some of that will also depend on the market you are trying to reach. Young people are less likely to read newspapers than older adults,, for instance. Perhaps marketing on social media might be more effective in reaching them. Due to the cost I’m trying to get away from direct mail, but some of the older people who attend my auctions do not have computers. I am trying to get email addresses from as many of my regular clients as possible, but I will never be able to completely avoid sending flyers in the mail to some of my regulars.
Advertising in any form is expensive in both time and finances. It’s important to identify the ways that are most productive for you and focus 80 percent of your marketing in those areas. Keep on the lookout for other marketing opportunities that might be less expensive and perhaps even more effective. I know it’s one more thing to have to deal with in an already busy schedule, but don’t be pouring money into advertising that isn’t producing the results you want and need.