Offline marketing still works; here are your options

Brochures still have value as a small business marketing tool.

By Alex Williams

When you start planning a marketing campaign, whether it’s offline or online, the key step is defining your target audience and what would be the most suitable approach for them. For instance, if your target audience does not have good Internet access, what’s the point of advertising online?

No doubt that digital marketing is a very effective way of getting clients, but it’s simply common sense to ask ourselves if relying solely on the Internet for generating leads should be our only option. That’s because there is that dreadful possibility that the Internet might suddenly crash for good.

However horrible a thought this is for digital marketers, it needs to be considered. It would be smart to consider offline strategies as well, because even though they are old-fashioned, a lot of people are still old-fashioned and they just can’t be bothered with using the Internet regularly.

Even though many experts say that traditional advertising is dying out, it’s still a useful marketing medium. On the other hand, there are supporters of traditional advertising who claim it will never become obsolete. They state a simple reason – people still react most instinctively to visual stimuli. However, one form is just not enough. As the old Latin saying goes – “Varietas delectat” – variety is the spice of life, and change and adaptability are key in sustaining interest. This is something that offline marketing is still good at.

Depending on the type of product, there are many different marketing strategies to choose from that are not focused on online media, such as billboards, posters, branded merchandise giveaways, or creative and colourful flyer printing that is cheap and can be used in countless situations.

Here are some ideas to take into consideration when planning an offline marketing campaign.

Offline guerrilla marketing

To get as much exposure as possible, going unconventional might just be the best way to go. Aside from having the potential to generate buzz, it’s extremely fun and allows your creativity to run wild! Here are just a few of the guerrilla marketing possibilities: leave stickers in random but frequented places such as local coffee shops or bars, make stencil graffiti on pavements or walls; leave branded pens at waiting rooms; or donate branded merchandise to your local community or youth centres etc.

Business cards

Business cards are small but they hold great potential. They don’t cost much and are very handy in both business and social situations. Use them any way you like – put them up on bulletin boards, hand them out to friends, neighbours and local businesses, slip them conveniently into magazine piles at the dentist’s office etc.

Printed material

Despite the constant rise in online media, printing is still alive and well and its use is so versatile. You can never have too many flyers to pass around, especially for advertising new clothing lines or cosmetics, or when offering discounts. Also, press releases are a great way to promote an important business event, since the right publication that targets your audience can bring you valuable attention; there are also posters and billboards in prominent places, such as city centers that are great for promoting concerts, business conventions or trade fairs.

Speaking at events

Professional events are a great way to meet new people and share your ideas. Getting personally involved and speaking at those events is even more effective. Find a local event related to your field, come up with an educational topic you can speak about, and volunteer.

Sponsoring a community event

If your budget allows it, this is a fantastic way to make your name more recognisable. Get proactive and sponsor an event instead of just participating in one. For example, it can be with a non-profit organisation hosting a charity event or a fundraiser. As a host, you can also conveniently hand out your merchandise, coupons and flyers, and gift certificates. This is what people appreciate and what will give you a positive public image.

Attending trade shows

Going to trade shows gives you more publicity in a very short time. You can generate more leads in a matter of days by showcasing and selling your products or services. The trick is to go well prepared – take leaflets, merchandise and business cards – and use every opportunity to advertise your business.

Redesigning packaging

One of the ways to strengthen your brand identity is to re-evaluate its presentation. Looks have always been important and tastes change all the time, so it’s a smart move to invest some time and money into refreshing old looks because even the tiniest change can make a big difference.

Conclusion

Offline marketing should not be dismissed as it is a valuable part of any marketing plan. It is evident that there is still power in press releases, event attendances, sponsorship and print materials and in the fact that they help boost online activities by driving traffic to websites.

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Author’s bio: My name is Alex Williams. I am a journalism graduate, and a rookie blogger trying to find my luck. Blogs are the perfect opportunity for presenting yourself to wider audience, getting the chance to showcase my expertise and receiving recognition. I am a regular contributor at Bizzmark Blog. Please follow me on Twitter: https://twitter.com/alextmwilliams1 and
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100011742847691.

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