How to Start a Home Based Placemat Advertising Business

by Contributing Writer; Updated September 26, 2017

Every business thrives on advertising. Restaurants are no different. Restaurant patrons are a captive audience and they use place mats, so it is safe to assume that in exchange for free placemats a restaurant would allow you to provide them with placemats that are filled with ads. This article will show you how to start your own placemat business from home.

Items you will need

  • Large Form Printer
  • Large Form Paper
  • Business License
  • Sample
  • Ingenuity
  • Salesmanship

Starting Your Own Placemat Business From Home

Step 1

Contact the IRS and file a sales tax ID form and business license form.

Step 2

Buy a large form printer and paper to match the maximum print size by two to four inches smaller.

Step 3

Obtain a list of local businesses via the phone book, internet resources or by driving by and making notes.

Step 4

Create a list of restaurants within a 15 mile diameter of the businesses on your list.

Step 5

Create a sample placemat by choosing a restaurant to place in the center of the placemat to measure 5" long by 3" high.

Step 6

Divide the placemat into ad space around the restaurant logo.

Step 7

Decide how much you will charge per ad space and how much for double or triple the ad space and create a brochure with the pricing.

Step 8

Fill your ad space with ads from the local businesses within the 15 mile radius of the restaurant.

Step 9

Print several copies of the placemat and pricing structure.

Step 10

Go to the restaurant and speak to the owner. Find out the daily foot traffic and how many placemats, on average, they use within one week then offer him that many.

Step 11

Go to each business you placed on your placemat sample and speak to the person in charge of advertising. Present them with the placemat and pricing break down as well as the number of people who will be seeing their ad on a daily basis.

Step 12

Mock up the placemat when the ad space is sold. Use either the business' business card, image or other information provided to you.

Step 13

Print the placemats and deliver to the restaurant.

Step 14

Repeat all steps for each restaurant.


  • If a business wishes to appear in multiple placemats discount the price. Have a high figure in mind when offering ad space to allow bargaining.


  • Never print on good quality paper.