Question Re: Classifieds responses from sunday papers

I’m looking into the paper’s classifieds, and they have a plan for m-f only, sunday only, entire week, etc.

I was wondering if, in your experiences, Sundays are typically as high yield / dollar spent as, say, just m-f. Only doing m-f would be cheaper, but I don’t want to miss Sundays if that’s a great day.

I’m torn, I can think of reasons why Sunday is better (more readers), and why it’s worse (less motivation to do ‘work’ things on a weekend, and more competition/distraction from other classifieds, articles, etc). I guess I’m basically asking, reader for reader, is Sunday a good day? If it cost a penny / reader no matter what, is the average Sunday crowd a better audience than the m-f (I’ve already corrected the dollars to readership rates, but just don’t know if a typical Sunday reader is a better opportunity than a typical, say, thursday reader).

Any input, even just your experiences, would be very useful :biggrin

My experience with classifieds is that they stink every day of the week. If anyone has a better experience, I would like to hear about it.

It’s cheap, though, so even if you get one deal a year out of it, I guess it is worth it. However, if you are waiting for the phone to ring solely from classifieds, I’d be worried about your business.

As you said, the cost per eyeball is the same either way, but I think that Sunday is still considered “real estate” day in most people’s homes.

I use classifieds, I get weeks where they generate no calls, and weeks where the phone rings daily. I run mine 7 days a week though. If I am to run it once, then it would be Sunday.

The key to running classified ads is consistency. I run my ad continuously. When people want to sell their house, they’ve seen my ad and know it will be in there. Your ad doesn’t have to be long. Short and sweet, but running everyday of the year is the best in my opinion. In my experience, a classified ad will be good for 3-4 deals per year.


If you don’t mind me asking what sort of price do you get for running 365 days a year? What does it cost you annually to run the ad?

Are you running an ad to purchase properties, rent one, or sell one? If it is to rent or sell I run my ads on Friday and Saturday. I have ran ads the entire week and I seemed to get the most calls on those two days. If the ad is to market your business, “I buy houses” type ad, then I agree with propertymanager that the consistent, daily ad is best.

Follow the patterns of other advertisers…days of light advertising, assume light readership…days of heavy advertising, assume heavy readership…

The advertisers that came before you have most likely gone through the expense of testing what days they are more apt to get attention and trigger response; mock them initially and then test, test, test.

I would debate that consistency is the most important as well…I write house for sale ads for local real estate agents and FSBOs in my community, and copy (the message, what you say and how you say it) is by far the most important component of any advertising effort, including classified ads.

I’ll give you an example of what I mean…

Here is an ad that I recieved from one of my clients today:

4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths
Brick Tudor
Open Floor Plan
Whirlpool Tub
Island in the Kitchen
Built-in BBQ
Screened Porch
Fenced Yard
Near Golf Course
Paxton Schools

And this is what I did with it:

Get Daddy A Caddy
Because you are only minutes away from the golf course in this 4-bed/2.5-bath brick Tudor in the Paxton School District. Open floor plan has a classic living room with wood floors, kitchen island for slicing and dicing, master bedroom with whirlpool tub and large closets for those with a passion for fashion. Outside you’ll find a fenced yard for the Pooch and a screened porch for bug-free entertaining….

What makes it work?

a. The headline (very few advertise using a headline; captures attention).
b. It doesn’t look like the 100’s of other cookie cutter ads in the same paper.
c. It converts features to benefits and appeals to the buyer’s emotion (not logic)…

Hope this helps…


Scott Miller

I would test the waters on craigslist. Find the ad with the hottest headline and best conversion then post your ad only on sunday. If you aren’t limited to geographic location you can use a nationwide service to post in every newspaper, same section, for a fraction of the cost of doing each seperately.