We spend a lot of time and energy focusing on marketing our brands online these days. But we shouldn’t overlook offline marketing, or its ability to tie in to our online efforts. Getting out in your local community to make them aware of your brand is great for finding new customers and for forming new business partnerships, both online and off. Here are some ways you can increase your offline marketing efforts to complement what you’re doing online.
1. Put Up Signs About Your Social Media In Your Store
It’s great that you have a Facebook page and a Twitter account for your brand, but if no one knows about them, what good do they do? Place a sign near the cash register with your social media links, or include them on your business card. That way, customers can search for you online.
Bonus points: Strike up a conversation with customers about social media, especially if you recognize one of your followers. Everyone likes being recognized! And after a customer/follower has come in, send a shout out on the social media channel as well.
2. Ask Customers to “Yelp” You
If you’re one of the thousands of businesses who relies on customer reviews on sites like Yelp.com, the best way to get more reviews is to simply ask for them. You can get a window decal announcing that your company is on Yelp (see number 1), but also make a point to invite customers to leave feedback after they’ve made a purchase.
Bonus points: For every review you receive, personally respond, either thanking the customer for the positive review, or reaching out to see how you can remedy a bad situation.
3. Try Targeted Direct Mail
Direct mail gets a bad rap, but done correctly and targeted to your demographic, it can be very effective. Whether you purchase an ad in a mailer pack like Valpak or send targeted offers to past clients, encourage them to connect with you through your website, blog, and social media channels, in addition to taking you up on a unique offer or promotion.
Bonus points: Get your customers’ attention by sending them birthday or holiday cards! Your direct mail doesn’t always have to be self-promotional, and this will serve as a pleasant reminder that you’re a company that cares.
4. Pull Your Offline Networking Online
The next time you attend a networking event and get into a discussion with someone, ask for her card. Then, when you get back to the office, hop online and connect with her on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter…wherever you can find her. And ask her to connect back. This can help further the relationship along until the next time you meet.
Bonus points: I like to send a link to a blog post or article that relates to a discussion I had with a new contact. It shows I was paying attention, and that I found something I thought she’d be interested in.