( Originally Published 1902 )
When you see the classified advertising columns of the metropolitan daily and Sunday papers, you see the zenith of that popular form of advertising.
Of course we all appreciate the uses of classified columns, and it is not the purpose of this article to tell the reader that when he has a house for sale he should use the " real estate" column—when he wishes a clerk he should use the " help wanted" column—when he has a business for sale he should use the " business opportunities " column, and so on.
But there are certain features of classified advertising that some advertisers are not so clever on as are others. Mail order advertisers in particular are keen judges and good users of classified advertising. Concerns wishing agents are liberal users of the classified columns of advertising, so are many brokers, fiscal agents and financial men.
If you have an article that you wish advertised broadcast and do not care to spend a small fortune in newspaper display (which eats up money as an elephant gobbles up a meal), pre-pare a two, three or four-line ad—eight words to a line—and have it read so that it will fit under a " business opportunities," " help wanted," "financial," or whatever classified heading under which you wish it to run. Take this ad around to an advertising agent, who makes a feature of classified advertising, and ask him to give you a list of papers with prices. You will be surprised at the bargain you will get. You will notice for a comparatively small sum you will get in a list of papers that reach a million or more readers.
Many stock brokers wanting agents in cities and towns obtain lump rates on the "business opportunities" columns in a list of papers. One ad, one order and one check does the business, and the ad simultaneously appears in scores of leading papers.
Mail order advertising men use the classified columns so liberally that one can scarcely pick up a daily or Sunday paper without seeing their string of alluring offers.
Salesmen are much in demand. Therefore ads for sales-men are very familiar. Usually such ads are simultaneously spread broadcast through the services of an advertising agent to greet the eyes of thousands of ambitious young men at the same moment.
Here are two points in favor of classified ads:---
They usually cost less than display ads.
They are more likely to be read by those interested than display advertising for they get in the column that people look to for just such ads.
Classified advertising columns have been used with great success in retail advertising. The great business built up a few years ago in Boston by Wilson Brothers, retailers in clocks, watches, jewelry, etc., was due, in a large measure, to the extraordinary liberality with which they used about all the classified columns of the Boston papers.