Publicizing Your Garage Sale

Planning a successful garage sale includes the important task of effectively promoting the event to attract lots of interested customers.

Americans have turned garage sale shopping into a national hobby. On weekends, holidays, and assorted other occasions you can drive through a variety of neighborhoods and find customers browsing antique, used, and nearly new items on every corner property.

Garage sales are an effective way to rid your home of unneeded items while making a few dollars of profit. An important part of planning a successful sale is related to targeted advertising.

While most of us don't want to become public relations specialists, we generally have to don that hat, among others, if we hope to attract a healthy supply of customers to the sale.

If you're not quite sure how to advertise your event, here are some ideas that have helped many a family reap gratifying results.

Start by running a newspaper advertisement the weekend before your sale. Studies suggest that the best day to sell items from home is Friday, followed by Saturday. Many people host a sale for both days, typically from 8 to 6 p.m. Publishing your ad in the "garage sale" section of a metropolitan newspaper will alert all the sale enthusiasts who search this category for postings like yours. Unless you live in a very isolated area, you can count on professional shoppers either stopping by your house the night before the sale or arriving on the sale day a half hour early in hopes of a preview peek. Some sale hosts open the pre-sale event for family members and friends, while others hold firm to the published dates.

The evening before the sale, drive to major cross streets near your location to post large-print signs highlighting your address supported by arrows pointing in the right direction. Check city ordinances to find out where you are allowed to hang personal signs, such as utility poles or public buildings, etc.

Make fliers to distribute to neighborhood families, friends in adjoining communities, and even local businesses that are willing to keep a few on hand. Grocery stores, fast food restaurants, and other community companies sometimes post a bulletin board for such information. Fliers should list the "Garage Sale" title, followed by dates, times, and location. Below that information you can list in bullet fashion some of the more prevalent or popular itmes, such as children's clothes, tools, or toys.

Tie balloons to your mailbox or on a post at the end of the driveway to catch drivers' attention. You may want to put a sign in your yard that lists dates and times.

Some host families send out hand-addressed post cards a week or two before the event. These go to more distant friends across town, extended family members, or former neighbors who may want to stop by for a chat.

It doesn't hurt to make a few telephone calls, either. A day or two before your sale, make reminder phone calls to those who may be interested that have been out of town, hard to get hold of, or extra busy.

Publicizing your event is sure to generate needed awareness. As customers arrive and browse, you may want to casually ask how they heard of your sale. Note their responses for next time so that you can focus on using the most effective advertising techniques. Then sit back and count your profits!

© High Speed Ventures 2011