Inbound marketing has become the weapon of choice among brands and businesses that desperately want to attract more website visitors and generate more leads. In the same way Katniss Everdeen has her bow and arrows, marketing executives have inbound marketing. But that does not mean your business should be exclusively focusing every ounce of attention and resource to this strategy because there is still a huge place for outbound marketing tactics, especially if you use them alongside your inbound techniques. Think of it as giving Katniss a sword to accompany her bow.
Obviously, the trick to making all this work is knowing just how your offline efforts can run hand-in-hand with your digital marketing methods to create a much larger marketing strategy.
To help you with this bit of the equation and have it so that your head is well and truly wrapped around the problem of collaboration, we have pulled together some advice on how to bring your online marketing offline in a way that will have your overall marketing efforts working like you have never seen before.
1. Promote Your Social Media In The Real World
One of the best ways to boost your social media following, interaction and all that jazz is to include prompts and reminders in your printed material too. Have the Instagram and Facebook logos on your brochures, include your Twitter handle on your flyers and let people know that you have weekly tips put on your social media accounts as a way to encourage them to follow you. Sure, printed materials cost money, but the Cartridge People have great deals on refurbished toner and printer ink cartridges, which will lower the costs dramatically so that’s no excuse to shy away from this route. Business cards, signs, banners, brochures, flyers, local magazine adverts and anything else like this should all include a prompt to like your page or follow your brand on the latest. Of course, a little prompt isn’t the only thing you can do. You can also announce social media contests and online giveaways through your offline marketing materials, even if that’s just having a few postcards on your shop counter that tells people about your next online contest and last month’s winner.
2. Share Consumer Generated Content Offline
If you follow a bunch of brands on Facebook or Instagram, you’ll know just how effective consumer-generated content is when it comes to their online marketing efforts. What you might not realise, though, is just how epic this consumer-generated content is for offline marketing materials too. It could be a wall in your store dedicated to photos and images of your favourite customers, sort of like they do in those restaurants that have a super-spicy dish only one-in-a-million people can finish. Alternatively, you could have a post-slash-image of the week where you literally take your favourite post from the week, print it out and hang it behind the counter of your store. Not only will this encourage people to come in and see if they made it to your wall of fame, it will encourage people to share their posts online too. This is because it promotes happy customers; it promotes a feeling that you care and have a genuine connection with those that use your brand. It sort of taps into the celebrity status thing that the world is going absolutely mad for these days. Of course, the more incentive you can give your customers the more this technique will work. Let’s say you have a contest or a post of the week competition, try giving the winner a small in-store or online discount. Oh, and just make sure you ask your customers if they are happy for you to print out their image and hang it on the wall because, believe it or not, some might not be too keen on the idea.
3. Blog Posts Make For Good Magazine Reads
Yes, having a blog on your website is one of the most epic means of growing your traffic, boosting your web presence and getting more and more people to visit the rest of your website. But your blog posts could also play a pivotal role in your offline marketing efforts. All you need to do is reach out to some of the local newspapers and magazines in your area and see if they would be interested in publishing one of your blogs. Or, if they say no for whatever reason, see if they like your style of writing, choice of angles or expertise and would have you right on a subject choice of your choosing. Those who read physical publications tend to be a very different demographic to those that enjoy reading blogs and that means you could end up finding a completely untapped market and that has to be good for business no matter which way you look at it.
4. Say Sod It & Print It Out Yourself
So your hopes and dreams of having a local publication print out your blog posts didn’t work out for whatever reason. That doesn’t mean you can’t take your online content, print it off yourself and turn it into offline content. It might not work for everyone, but it could work extremely well if you are in a business where the same questions pop up over and over again. We’re talking about lawn care experts, dentists, chiropractors, gym owners, wedding brands, bed superstores and anything else of a similar ilk. It could be that you just print off your blog posts and turn them into a brochure, but you could just as easily print an infographic onto a small pamphlet for people to reference quickly, or pop a checklist onto a large fridge magnet or anything else. The world is your oyster when you go all Do It Yourself.
As you can see, when it comes to merging your online and offline strategies, it isn’t just about bringing offline marketing online, which is what most people think. Instead, you should try bringing your online marketing into the real world.