Advertising by circulars and such things undoubtedly is sometimes profitable. In the manufacturing or jobbing business this is more likely to be true than not.
The retail merchant needs a quicker, surer, less expensive method, and he finds it in daily and weekly newspapers.
There is no method of advertising which costs so much and so little at the same time. While the expenditure may have to be greater in the newspapers, the amount of publicity received is doubly as great in proportion to the price as that to be had in any other way.
An exact example will do more to make this clear and to prove it true than columns of talk.
A shoe dealer on Sixth avenue, New York, wished to advertise his store. He purposed sending out a series of circulars, one each month, for nine months. There were 5,000 circulars sent each time, and the cost for the series of nine, including postage, was about $600. For this sum he reached 5,000 people nine times.
For the same amount of money he could have placed a five-inch ad in the Sunday issue of a paper having a guaranteed, sworn circulation of over 1,000,000 copies every issue for 39 issues, covering the same period that the distribution of his circulars did.
Contrast the 45,000 circulation he secured by the circulars with the 4,000,000 circulation he could have had in the paper, and you’ll see at once how great a mistake he made. There is no question about the fact that he would have received ten times the benefit from the newspaper advertising that he did from the circular. It is the only logical conclusion.
Sometimes circulars are good, but whenever you are contemplating issuing one sit down and figure up the possibilitiessee how much space and how much circulation the cost of the circular would buy in a good newspaper.
You will find in every case that reason and common sense will be in favor of using the paper. By doing so you will reach nine-tenths of the very people to whom you would address circulars, and you will reach ten times as many other people to whom your circular would not have gone at all.