Your Online Efforts Will Be In Vain If You’re Not Offline Too

Collaborative post – may contain affiliate links

We stumbled across an (outdated) fact today. There are 966 million websites in the realm of the Internet. The reason we said this was outdated because it has been a year since that figure was highlighted, which means there is likely a lot more than that today. Why are we telling you this daunting piece of information? That’s simple really; it highlights just how much competition you face online.

We’re not saying you need to totally ignore the digital sphere because that would be the equivalent of marketing suicide. However, if you go the other way and totally ignore the real world – the physical world – then all your online efforts will be forgotten about with a half hour (Facebook ads have a lifespan of 36 minutes on average).

Of course, knowing how to market yourself offline is no easy feat, which is why we have pulled together a few ideas to help inspire your creativity. Enjoy.

Your Staff Are At The Center

Mmm hmmm. These are the people that interact with your customers. They are the people that personify the impression you are hoping your brand gives off and that is why you need to make sure there is an extra emphasis on how they work as marketing tools. If you want to impress customers, nothing beats having employees that are presented in accordance with your brand who are able to solve your customer’s problems. Period.

Your Printed Materials Should Be Special

There is a still a hugely important role to be played by direct mail, the kind that people can physically hold in the same way they can touch a banana, which is why you need to start collaborating with some printing and mailing services. The trick is to make something special, though, not something that will be put on the hallway table and added to the recycling on the next garbage trip. You want something that impresses, whether that is with evocative imagery, creative content or even a fancy leaflet where things pop out like a kids storybook. Make it worth them keeping hold of.

Branded Merchandise Lasts Forever

We’re not saying you need to put your logo on some pens, mugs and drawstring bags because this has been done so many times it now gets blocked out by people’s subconscious. Instead, what you need to do is create branded merchandise that people will actually use, and use in the places where you want your logo to be seen. That’s how to truly optimize your branding. If you have a protein shake company, then brand a filtered water bottle knowing it will be taken to the gym. If you are attending a trade show, then make your bags the biggest so that people are encouraged to put everything else they pick up inside yours, that way you will be seen most. Make cool branded artwork that offices may hang on their walls. That sort of thing.

People Can’t Resist A Giveaway

How many times have you seen those Facebook ads that say something like, “Like and share our page and you could win this helicopter”. No one is winning a helicopter. You know that, they know that, everyone knows that – but people can’t resist it. We’re not saying you should lie. But by offering a giveaway whether it be an RC helicopter or a Bluetooth speaker, you will grab people’s attention. You market this online and you give it away offline.

Freebies Which Pay Their Way

Collaborative post – may contain affiliate links

Many business owners are wary of the word ‘free’. When money is tight, why make matters worse by giving things away with no return? It’s madness, and certainly not the way to make a success of your business, right?

Perhaps not. But, with so many companies offering freebies, you have to wonder whether there’s something to the method. It’s working for them, after all. The first thing to get your head around is that nothing is free. As such, you’re sure to see a return on anything you give away.

How, you ask? Well, for one, by working with companies like Pro-Motion on labeling systems, you can ensure that your brand and logo is shouting loud and proud from any freebie offers.
As such, those products draw more attention to your store and thus increase your earnings. So, you see, the receiver may not pay, but someone does. Plus, giving things away for free creates loyalty, which again leads to future sales.

Of course, this only works within reason. If you’re giving away $300 of stock each time, you probably won’t see a return. But, giving away small bits and pieces is a sure way to increase your money. Here are some items worth considering.

Stationery

Branded stationery is a fantastic marketing ploy, because you can guarantee your customers will use it. Everyone needs pens, and there will inevitably come a time when they turn to the one you gave them. Hence, you’ll stick in their minds, and make an impression on those around them. Plus, pens and pencils are relatively cheap to buy in bulk. Bear in mind that opting for the most affordable selection may not be best. Pick pens you’d be happy using, which will last a long time. You’re making an impression here, remember. Good pens = good business opportunities.

Tote bags

In recent years, tote bags have become a staple freebie for many companies. Again, these are incredibly cheap to produce. In fact, if you’re printing in bulk, this will be one of the most economical advertising methods you can think of. Even better, you can be sure that these will have a broad reach. If customers take them out and about for a shopping trip in town, crowds of people are going to see your logo. Make it bold enough, and they won’t be able to resist popping in to take a look at what you offer.

Loyalty gifts

Many companies also opt for loyalty schemes, where they offer cash or free gifts to customers who visit a set number of times. Done right, this is another excellent way to boost your earnings with ongoing custom. Sure, you may have to fork out $10 in the end, but the customer will have to buy from you ten or so times before that. And, once they’re into the habit, you can be sure they’ll come back after as well. When you think about it like that, $10 doesn’t seem like such a loss, does it?