Arlington, VA

It’s no secret that it can be tough to be a local business.

Competing in the age of e-commerce and digital marketing is hard and sometimes confusing. While we can’t tell you what hashtags will best help you market yourself as Arlington’s go-to electronic-scooter-riding real estate agent on Instagram (as an example) we can, however, offer some advice for publishing promoted posts on ARLnow.

Promoted posts are sponsored articles that help give local businesses a boost by getting the word out about openings, new offerings, upcoming events and more. Here are some recent examples.

To make the most of your time in the ARLnow spotlight, here are some quick tips for best reaching our quarter-million monthly readers:

  1. Keep it concise — The shorter the post, the more likely it will be read.
  2. Keep it informative — People want to learn about local businesses but they generally don’t want to be “sold” to, so keep exclamation points and sales-y writing to a minimum. Instead, give people useful information about you and what you have to offer.
  3. Keep it local — You’re a local business, so emphasize your local-ness. Go ahead, tell everyone the owner of the business went to Wakefield High School or your cafe is within easy biking distance of the W&OD Trail.
  4. Keep it actionable — If you’re promoting an event, include a prominent link or two to the page where you can RSVP. If you just opened a new store, say where you are, link to a map and note what your hours are.
  5. Be authentic — Staying on-brand is usually a good idea, but being your authentic self in your writing is even better. Write like a human and not a machine and you may be surprised to find how positive the reaction is.

Promoted posts are a popular option for advertisers because they’re affordable and they work. To learn more, see our 2019 media kit or drop our business team a line: 703-348-0583 or [email protected].

For more local advertising best practices, see our Guide to Effective Advertising.

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ARLnow.com is an advertiser-supported independent local news website.

Our advertisers allow us to hire reporters and bring their local reporting to the entire community without a paywall. Please join us in supporting local organizations that support local journalism.

Interested in advertising? Check out our 2019 media kit which contains all of our advertising offerings.

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It’s early on a Monday morning, but soon an office in Ballston will begin buzzing with the sound of police scanners, Twitter alerts, ringing phones and journalists discussing the day’s news coverage.

This happens on a daily basis, thanks to the local businesses and organizations that grow their business, achieve their marketing goals and support independent local journalism by advertising on ARLnow.

This site is 100% free to you, and will remain so, thanks to those that pay for the privilege of reaching you and about a quarter million other readers via Arlington’s No. 1 source of local information. Here are the top five *other* reasons to go out of your way to support our advertisers.

  1. Companies that invest in their local community help make it a better place.
  2. Check the reviews, many of our advertisers are among the best in their category. (Which is another reason our staff personally supports many of them, including Allied Title, Arrowine, Dominion Floors, Oz Restaurant, Techspace, Dominion Wine and Beer, Elite Dental, Clarendon Animal Care, etc.)
  3. Our advertisers are mostly locally owned and operated. Chains like McDonald’s mostly advertise on a national scale and don’t place individual ad buys like local publishers like us.
  4. They’re tech-savvy enough to advertise online. That says something about about how they run their business; even in 2019 some businesses still primarily advertise via traditional media and direct mail.
  5. None of them wasted their money on lame local Super Bowl commercials.

Want to learn more about our advertising options? See our 2019 media kit.

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Morning Notes

Medical Emergency at Yorktown — A student suffered a serious medical emergency at Yorktown High School this morning. Police and medics rushed to the scene, CPR was performed and the student was reportedly revived. He was taken to a local hospital.

Arlington Tourism Website Wins Award — “The Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International… on Jan. 22 presented the Arlington Convention and Visitors Service (ACVS) with a 2018 Adrian Award for the StayArlington tourism website.” [Arlington County]

Best Bowls of Soup in Rosslyn — A new list exhaustively details “where to go for a good bowl of soup” in Rosslyn, “because it’s everybody’s favorite cold-weather lunch.” [Rosslyn BID]

Gymnastics Competition at W-L — “The annual Barbara Reinwald Invitational girls high-school gymnastics meet was held Jan. 19 at Washington-Lee High School. The high-school meet, which has been held for decades, included 11 teams and was won by the host Washington-Lee Blue team.” [InsideNova]

Chef Geoff Winning Happy Hour Fight — Chef Geoff Tracy is poised to withdraw his lawsuit against the Commonwealth of Virginia, which seeks to overturn restrictions on advertising happy hour specials and prices, after the state legislature overwhelmingly passed bills that would remove those and other happy hour restrictions. [Tysons Reporter]

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Morning Notes

A Wall that Divided Arlington Still Stands — “The wall was erected in a section of Arlington County in the 1930s to separate black residents from white residents. And for decades, it did just that. It kept segregation intact by creating a physical barrier between an ‘us’ and a ‘them.'” [Washington Post]

Coming Soon: Happy Hour Advertising? — “A lawsuit filed against the state by a Northern Virginia restaurateur could be the motivation the General Assembly needs to change laws that restrict happy hour advertising.” [Virginia Mercury]

Demand for Free Pet Food Rises — The Animal Welfare League of Arlington says it has seen an increase in demand for its free pet food pantry during the government shutdown. [Twitter]

Resources for Furloughed Feds — Congressman Don Beyer’s (D-Va.) office has compiled a list of resources for those affected by the federal government shutdown. [Rep. Don Beyer]

Anti-NIMBY Legislation Proposed in Va. — “[Del. Jeff] Bourne and Sen. Jennifer McClellan, D-Richmond, are pursuing legislation in the General Assembly this year that would explicitly prohibit local governments from denying permits for housing developments because of the expected race or income levels of the residents.” [Virginia Mercury]

Flickr pool photo by Kevin Wolf

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Thank You to Our Advertisers

ARLnow.com is an advertiser-supported independent local news website.

Our advertisers allow us to hire reporters and bring their local reporting to the entire community without a paywall. Please join us in supporting local organizations that support local journalism.

Interested in advertising? Check out our 2019 media kit which contains all of our advertising offerings.

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Elections around Arlington may not attract the sort of expensive TV ads that have come to dominate local stations ahead of the midterm elections, but candidates around the county have shelled out thousands to bring their messages to Facebook.

An ARLnow analysis of the social media site’s political ad database shows that Arlington’s six candidates for Congress and local office on the ballot this fall have combined with the county’s party committees to buy 549 Facebook ads from Jan. 1 through today (Oct. 29).

Thomas Oh, the Republican mounting a longshot bid to unseat Rep. Don Beyer (D-8th District), led the way among the county’s candidates, buying 100 ads on the site since launching his campaign in February. According to campaign finance reports, he shelled out about $2,100 to pay for those posts.

But Oh was far from the bigger user of Facebook ads in Arlington — that distinction belongs to the Arlington Young Democrats, who have purchased 270 ads on the platform over the course of the year. The Arlington County Democratic Committee wasn’t far behind, buying 91 ads.

The county’s candidates for local office have relied on social media advertising a bit less, but have still used Facebook to reach thousands of potential voters.

In the lone race for a County Board seat this year, pitting independent incumbent John Vihstadt against Democrat Matt de Ferranti, the challenger has run a bit more Facebook ads so far.

According to Facebook’s database, de Ferranti has run 34 ads on the platform since launching his campaign in January. Records show he’s spent nearly $1,900 on Facebook ads in all, though campaign finance documents only detail spending through end of September — candidates will release their final reports of the campaign later this week.

Of the Democrat’s ads, 19 ran in the run-up to his primary victory over Chanda Choun in June, with 15 reserved for the general election contest with Vihstadt. In general, de Ferranti’s ad buys have each been less than $100 each, with only seven falling in the range of $100 to $500 — Facebook only provides ranges, not specific numbers, for spending and traffic figures.

Two of de Ferranti’s ads picked up between 50,000 and 100,000 impressions, while two others range between 10,000 and 50,000.

By contrast, Vihstadt has only run 10 ads on Facebook so far. His current campaign finance reports only show him spending about $100 on the posts, but he’s ramped up his activity on Facebook in October, meaning his spending will be reflected in the next set of reports.

However, Facebook’s database shows that the incumbent has recorded four ad buys of $100 or more, and one of more than $500, in all. He’s also had two ads reach between 50,000 and 100,000 impressions and two more range between 10,000 and 50,000.

Notably, Vihstadt has also turned to television advertising, and recently started running a single ad on local cable stations.

In the contest for the only School Board seat on the ballot, independent (and frequent candidate) Audrey Clement has outpaced incumbent Barbara Kanninen, who has the endorsement of local Democrats in the nominally nonpartisan race.

Clement has run 32 ads this year, spending about $1,520, according to campaign finance reports. She’s only spent more than $100 on three separate ad buys, but she’s still managed to reach plenty of people. Eight of her ads have secured between 5,000 and 10,000 and impressions, while two have managed between 10,000 and 50,000.

Kanninen has run just 12 ads, by comparison, sending about $241 to Facebook in all. Her ads have been viewed a bit less, with three ranging between 1,000 and 5,000 impressions and one making it to the 5,000 to 10,000 range.

Beyer appears not to have a run single ad on Facebook, despite raising more than $1.9 million over the course of his bid for a third term in Congress. However, he has benefitted from plenty of ads touting his candidacy from the local Democratic committee and the Young Democrats.

Oh faces quite the uphill battle to best Beyer, considering that the 8th (covering all of Arlington and parts of Alexandria) is among the safest districts for Democrats in the country. But the first-time candidate has managed to attract some attention to his Facebook ads at least, with four attracting between 10,000 and 50,000 impressions and seven attracting between 5,000 and 10,000. He’s spent more than $100 on seven different ad buys, which has surely helped boost those traffic numbers.

Facebook’s records don’t show any evidence of any ad spending from the county’s Republican committee, or its Green Party.

Disclosure: both Clement and Vihstadt have purchased ads on ARLnow.com. Flickr pool photo via wolfkann

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Thank You to Our Advertisers

ARLnow.com is an advertiser-supported independent local news website.

Our advertisers allow us to hire reporters and bring their local reporting to the entire community without a paywall. Please join us in supporting local organizations that support local journalism.

0 Comments

ARLnow.com is an advertiser-supported independent local news website.

Our advertisers allow us to hire reporters and bring their local reporting to the entire community without a paywall. Please join us in supporting local organizations that support local journalism.

0 Comments

ARLnow.com is an advertiser-supported independent local news website.

Our advertisers allow us to hire reporters and bring their local reporting to the entire community without a paywall. Please join us in supporting local organizations that support local journalism.

0 Comments

ARLnow.com is an advertiser-supported independent local news website.

Our advertisers allow us to hire reporters and bring their local reporting to the entire community without a paywall. Please join us in supporting local organizations that support local journalism.

0 Comments
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