What Is Collateral Advertising? - dummies

By Gary Dahl

Collateral advertising has numerous purposes — and the different kinds of collateral advertising at your disposal are numerous as well. You should research carefully, always keeping your advertising budget in mind, to determine which form of collateral advertising best suits your needs.

Whatever you’re trying to accomplish, a collateral piece, in one or more of its many forms, can do the job. How well it does the job is up to you. Types of collateral advertising include the following:


Brochures can be anything from a single sheet folded in two or three to a small booklet that is nearly a mini-catalogue. You can leave brochures behind with prospective clients at the end of a sales presentation, keep a stack of them on the counter at your place of business, send them as direct mail, or send them to people who request more information about your business.


Business postcards typically include a picture of your product, your service in action, or some other aspect of your business, with brief info on the back, perhaps announcing an upcoming sale or other news. Postcards are ideal for cutting costs, and they’re effective because they can be read without being opened. They’re also easy to turn into coupons. The following picture shows one side of a promotional postcard.



Many small business owners write their own newsletters to keep their company’s products and services uppermost in their customers’ minds. Newsletters can provide information on trends in the industry, news and reviews of new products and services, testimonials from satisfied customers, or just fun-to-read articles that your customers may enjoy.

Business cards

Business cards have been around for a long time, but today’s technology provides options that weren’t available twenty years ago. All business cards should provide your name, your business’s name, address, phone number, fax number, e-mail address, Web site, and any other contact info you want to include. They can also include your photo — which is great for customers who are more likely to remember your face than your name — or a photo of your storefront or office building. Anything to make it stand out among the rest.

Electronic direct mail

Whether via e-mail, Web content, or text messaging, electronic direct mail is the fastest-growing area of direct mail. E-mail newsletters are a cheap alternative to snail-mailing your customers; just make sure you provide a way to get off your mailing list.

Freebies and samples, aka tchotchkes

Giving away a miniature version of your product, a free sample, a toy with your logo on it, or another creative element is a good way to get your business’s name remembered in a positive way. After all, who doesn’t like getting free stuff?