Just because we’re living in a digital age doesn’t mean that print media is dead. Far from it. There was a time when it certainly seemed to be on the decline, but in recent years there has been a resurgence, with customers placing a greater emphasis on products they can hold, products that have some palpable value.
This has also been true in the advertising sector. Digital advertising may have been the way ten years ago, but with the onset of ad blockers and a move towards expensive viral ad campaigns, there is very little there for small and medium sized companies anymore.
That’s why these offline methods that utilize print media are still some of the best options for any modern company.
1. Street Advertising
Curb appeal is one of the most important parts of any brick-and-mortar business. Customers need to know what you do and what you sell in a single glance, otherwise they’ll walk right on by. If your business is a little out of the way or you’re in a cluster of other businesses, then you need to take your message away from your business and onto the street.
That’s where teardrop banners come in. They are eye-catching and can get your message out to every potential customer without being too forceful or forward. Mascots, sign-spinners and people handing out leaflets will do the same thing and seem to be the preferred choice, but these options annoy customers and devalue your brand. A sandwich board will do much more for your business.
2. Business Cards
Every business has them, but only because every business needs them. A business card is as essential now as it has always been, but it needs to be a perfect representation of your brand as opposed to something that simply carries your contact details.
It’s also important to know who your business card is for and to create it for that audience. If you run a retail store then your business card is not something that you give to customers, but something that you give to suppliers and stockists. This means that it should be slick and professional, even if your business is selling party balloons to kids.
If you’re a quirky brand, by all means inject some of that quirkiness into the design, but don’t overdo it. If you’re a luxury brand, get the highest quality card that you can. You want your card to stand out. The best way to approach business card design is to imagine that you are giving your card to an influential CEO who has just received cards from all of your competitors as well.
If they have a stack of cards in their hand from competing stores, what makes your stand out? Is it bigger, thicker and better? Does it have a uniquely bevelled edge or a cool design? If you pass this hypothetical test, then you know you have the perfect card.
3. No Flyers
This is more of a “don’t” than a “do”. Flyers are the printed version of spam email. No one likes them, no one wants them. There are only a handful of companies that should ever use them, including local contractors and takeout restaurants. And even then, there needs to be a purpose. A restaurant can use them to print menus and then offer discounts. A contractor can use them to target specific houses who are clearly in need of their services.
They can also be used to advertise local events, although in this case you’re better off contacting a local newspaper and asking them to slip your flyers in their pages (for a fee, of course).
If you’re just mass mailing a glossy commercial for your brand than you’re wasting your money and angering a lot of people.
4. Give Something Away for Free
As with the business cards, if you’re printing the same things that everyone else is printing then you need to standout. One way that you can do this is to attach coupons to everything that you print. Whether it’s a flyer, a business card or a circular, it doesn’t matter, because if customers see a coupon the bargain seeker in them will come alive and they’ll hold onto it for dear life.
5. Promotional Prints
If you have a fun and quirky brand, then get your message and design printed on mugs, t-shirts and car stickers. It shouldn’t be all about advertising and there should be a unique design, message or slogan there as well. You want people to be proud to stick it on their car, to wear it outside or to make it part of their daily routine.
Once you have the promotional product then you can start giving it away. For clothes and other expensive items, run competitions or give them away for free with high priced items. For stickers and pens, give them to anyone who orders from you. The trick is to get your message out there and every time someone walks out of your store carrying your brand, you’re doing just that.
The same applies to packaging. From the boxes that you ship online products in, to the bags you give to customers, everything should proudly display your brand. And if you use reusable gift bags instead of disposable packaging and canvas bags instead of paper bags then you know that your customers will reuse them and spread your message everywhere they go.
Source: Main home business mag
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