So, You’ve Decided You Need to do More Marketing… Now What?
The choice is simple… or is it…? To market, or not to market? Which marketing media should I use… print or digital, or both? Once you make the choice to either start marketing or to ramp up your existing marketing efforts, it’s not as simple as it seems. Everyone knows they need to market their product or service, but most of us struggle to get our marketing efforts off the ground. The more we think about it… the more questions arise and pretty soon marketing gets pushed to the back-burner again.
The first step as you begin your marketing effort is obvious. Unless you want your brand to look like a homemade project, you must hire a professional graphic designer. But once you’ve selected a qualified designer, what will your approach be? Print marketing? Digital media marketing? Social marketing? Web marketing? Where and how will you start? It can seem overwhelming right out of the gate… and this is exactly why most business owners never really get their marketing efforts off the ground.
There is so much free and conflicting advice floating around online that you become more indecisive the more you read! Come to think of it, this very article is a prime example of free online advice, isn’t it :)
It is this author’s opinion that balance is the key to a solid marketing strategy. Even if your business is a 100% online sales machine, online marketing, print marketing and good ol’ face-to-face grass roots selling must all be included in your over-all plan. Here are some things to consider as you decide where to focus your business marketing efforts.
WE AREN’T ONLINE ALL THE TIME!
Contrary to popular belief, not everyone is online 24/7, nor should they be. Cell phone batteries die, service is interrupted and lately more and more people are trying to disconnect in order to enhance both personal and business relationships. What happens when we are down or decide to disconnect for awhile? People actually start picking up magazines, books and brochures. They end up reading more signage and looking at their mail more closely. They listen to the radio more, create more conversation with family, friends and colleagues. It’s amazing!
As long as human interactivity is still around, and I hope it is around forever, it’s unlikely that traditional print media will ever completely disappear.
Sure, we will always surf our phones, tablets and computers for websites and information, but without giving a business prospect something to hold onto, they are much less likely to remember you later. Even a simple business card can make the difference between creating a long-term business relationship or a forgotten first contact. A well-crafted, memorable business card design is a great way to merge print marketing with your online efforts.
ADDITIONAL POINT OF CONTACT
Let’s face it, you can’t force a prospect to be engaged. Whether it is an online experience or traditional marketing interaction, keeping a potential customer’s attention is difficult. If there is the least bit of interest on the part of the prospect, conversion chances increase greatly when they have a tangible piece of your branded marketing materials in their hands. Look at it this way, if they have any interest they probably wont discard your brochure as they run across it multiple times, and each time they see it reinforces your brand. On the other hand, if they ran across your website once upon a time, they just might never make the effort to return?
We all underestimate how difficult online marketing is. A good online marketing plan requires full-time monitoring, updating and management. I agree a good website is the best way to deliver information to your prospects and customers for sure. But the best way to stay “in front” of your customers is with traditional marketing efforts that continually support and drive traffic to your website and other online marketing channels.
THE PERSONAL TOUCH
To me, nothing feels better than receiving a hand-written thank you note from a client, friend or vendor. It really says to me “wow, they took the time to actually write to me and mail this personal note!” We are all bombarded with emails, texts and phone calls these days. It seems that the information age has become the SPAM age. If you stop and really think about it, sometimes the only way to differentiate yourself from the competition is to add a personal touch to the relationship. A personal sales visit, taking the client to lunch, shaking their hand at a trade show or event or with that personal piece of print communication. There are some things a website just can’t do.
In our experience, clients who focus on both digital AND traditional marketing rarely lose clients. On the other hand, those who rely 100% on digital online marketing tend to suffer from attrition when their competition becomes better than they are at creating solid customer relationships out here in the real world.
What’s the moral of the story? Stay on line… but don’t get lost online. When it comes to building relationships, a handshake, personal note, or a phone call beats an email every time!
Want to learn more about building and marketing your business? Contact Tower Media Group at 480-835-0003 or visit our website at: www.TowerMediaAZ.com