There's a world of ways to market your business, but for the best results it's a good idea to blend on and offline channels.
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When business owners consider advertising initiatives, they often feel the choice is between opting for digital advertising techniques (like social networking and professional networking, online advertising and websites) or more traditional forms (poster, postcards, calendars, business cards or newspaper advertising).
Often the best fit is a blend of the two and it is possible to successfully combine contemporary advertising with traditional methods. In a 2015 survey conducted by The Content Marketing Institute the top three methods of advertising were search engine marketing, print/offline/non-digital promotion and online banner adverts on websites.
In other surveys, mailed materials, in-store circulars and newspaper adverts as offered by companies like Onlineprinters were cited as the main way in which customers became aware of new products. Believe it or not - many marketing experts advise that printed materials still account for the lion's share of marketing materials!
The truth is that printed materials are often a critical link in the chain that influences B2B end-users but these can be used to promote the use of digital efforts like social media platforms. In turn Facebook and Twitter make it easy to promote your business using photos, special offers, news articles, information, sharing functions and likes and tags.
Your Facebook page also allows you to provide printables like newsletters, calendars and posters which may be printed from files and used at events, handed out to customers or given to potential customers.
You can offer a printed or e-newsletter to customers and you can advertise free printed material to be collected at special events, given away as prizes or create an art competition and use the winning entry as your chief business card design.
You can offer free books, printed magazines, posters, content-rich brochures, mouse pads and other promotional materials when customers visit your online website or sign up for your digital newsletter or magazine.
It's important to ensure that not all available content is accessible in any one format-so for example we see many printed magazines that offer exclusive content and digital websites that offer special deals that are not obtainable anywhere else.
In so doing, your consumers are invited to make use of as many marketing avenues as possible, spreading your customer base across different advertising routes. Magazine content likewise promotes online offerings while online websites encourage customers to subscribe to magazine and brochure content.
Using QR/matrix barcodes
You can opt to use QR codes and URLs to track media. This creates an intelligent link between printed materials and online formats. When customers scan codes or use the URLs on their phones traffic is sent to your online sales drives and customer data is gathered.
This innovative process allows you to personalise images or data from online sources as you print them, and is direct marketing at its finest. For example subscribers are invited to sign up for free products and you target your printed marketing around certain interest groups based on data from Facebook or Twitter.