Archive for March, 2016

How to Make Print Simple Yet Effective

Although online marketing seems to get most of the attention these days, print marketing can still be a successful way to find new customers. You don’t have to make your print marketing materials complex or elaborately designed in order to grab the eye of potential customers. There are plenty of simple ideas for print marketing that are highly effective.

 

Keep It Clean

A clean design with a few well-chosen colors, rather than a busy one with multiple tones, is the ideal way to catch the attention of consumers. Clean designs won’t overwhelm consumers, and they won’t hide your message. When it comes to white space, don’t shy away from it. Leaving a considerable amount of white space around your design helps draw consumers’ eyes to it.

 

Get Right to the Point

Whether you’re designing a brochure, flyer, poster or newspaper ad, don’t include too much information about your products or services. You only have a limited amount of space to make an impression on consumers, so make the most of it. Include the most important points you want consumers to know about your products or services. Putting too much information on your print marketing materials can end up causing consumers to turn away instead of reading through them.

 

Make It Easy to Read

The layout of your print marketing materials is just as important as the text you’re including. Make it easy for consumers to read them by including bold headlines and bullet points. These help break up what would otherwise be walls of text. You can also consider using infographics, depending on the types of print marketing materials you’re creating. These show consumers what they need to know in a format that’s easy to read.

 

Putting these simple tips into practice when designing your print materials can help improve your chances of gaining new customers. Remember that consumers value simple, easy-to-read designs and layouts that immediately let them know what you’re offering them.

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What is integrated marketing and why should I do it?

What Is Integrative Marketing?

Integrative marketing is a method that combines a detailed understanding of consumers with large scale data analysis to create content and communications that develops a consistent identity throughout all mediums and messages. It is a holistic method, utilizing the multitude of approaches, channels, and skill sets that are now necessary to be competitive in today’s digital age.

Why Is Integrative Marketing a Necessary Tool for Businesses?

Advances in technology, as well as the explosion of internet usage around the world, have led to a need for a major shift in marketing techniques. While in the past, consumers accessed information mainly through print, they now primarily access information through digital media. Furthermore, not only has internet usage become more widespread, there have also been dramatic changes to the way the digital information is accessed. Instead of utilizing primarily one device (i.e. the laptop or desktop), most individuals now use connected devices (i.e. appliances, cars, smartphones, and tablets). Moreover, social media has also become a necessary marketing tool as well.

To keep up with these changes, businesses must adapt their marketing strategies as well in order to create a consistent identity through all mediums and messages. Not only is integrated marketing necessary due to the plethora of media and purchasing options for consumers, integrated marketing also helps a business obtain – and maintain – a competitive advantage. Benefits of utilizing integrated marketing include: (1) an increased return on investment, (2) more efficient marketing, and (3) the prevention of duplicate messages.

When it comes to marketing, an understanding of the consumer is vital. With integrative marketing, businesses attract, engage, and retain consumers across a variety of digital, social media, and print platforms.

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Integrate social media with direct mail

Staying in touch with existing clients and reaching out to new clients is a vitally important task for any business owner. A business owner needs to bring in new clients and continue to provide value for the current customers. In the last few years alone, many new ways have been developed to accomplish this goal. Business owners today need to be aware of such methods as well how to use standard methods at the same time. A business owner who is able to successfully integrate social media with direct mail methods is one who will continue to flourish.

Get Personal

One of the best ways to integrate any social media and direct mail effort is via personalization. Customers tend to respond well to messages that are personalized to them. Building social media means building relationships with others. Any company should be aware of their client’s special circumstances including where they love and their specific preferences. Clients like mailings targeted to the interests they have shown to the world via social media.

Provide Benefits

An effective direct mail campaign is one that provides clients with special benefits just for them. Think about the kind of benefit you can offer your clients. Maybe access to a fashion show just for them or a certain amount off products they buy. Clients respond well to such benefits.

Publicize Your Direct Mail Efforts

Use your Facebook, LinkedIn account and other social media accounts to announce your direct mail campaign. Let your clients know what they can expect when they reach out to you and get mailings from your business. A direct mailing campaign should take advantage of all social media possibilities that exist right now. A well thought out media campaign should use all tools at the same time.

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Millennials are not giving up on print

Millennials, or those people 30 and under, are tech savvy, with the ability to handle all the latest gadgetry and social media with ease. This has led to the idea that they are turning their backs on print media such as newspapers and books. When you see so many using social media, it’s easy to think this might be the case, but recent research is showing a very different picture. While they may be using paper or print less, they are far from pushing it all the way aside.

Newspapers

Many think newspapers are a dying breed because of the Internet, and the experts said the same when radio and television were invented at the time. An info graphic published by the Newspaper Association of America shows that 56 percent of people between the ages of 18 and 34 read newspapers, either online or in print, in any given week. People in this age group see their local newspaper as a reliable source of local information, and that affects them personally. They may not care whether it is in print or online, but they do appear to care about local information. The same study showed 10 percent of people in this age group are actual subscribers to the paper product, and an even higher number get a paper copy about once a week. About 70 percent react to ads in a paper newspaper as well.

Books

There is something about holding a book in one’s hand, and even millennials think this way. A Washington Post story cited a study that showed a fourth of college students bought print textbooks even when they were given an electronic copy free. Overall, when given the option, the same study showed people in this age group relied on e-books only nine percent of the time.

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Researching for your target audience, how is it done?

One of the most important factors of a successful business is knowing who is interested in your product or service. Directing your marketing to the right audience is called your target audience. If you are addressing your marketing to your target audience, your business will reap the rewards. So, how do you do specific research for your target audience? Here are a few useful tips that will help you get to know your target audience.

Know Your Product
The first and important factor when it comes to researching your target audience, is knowing your product. When you completely understand your product inside and out, you will not only be more effective at selling it, but you will know who to sell it to.

Research Competitors
Finding your target audience basically means determining how you intend to advertise and market your product. For example, if you have a product that is specifically designed for children, you wouldn’t use wording, design or images that only older adults would understand. Research your competition to get a glimpse of how their website looks, is it bold and colorful or bland and to the point. Do they have a large amount of comments, followers and forum posts? If so, what are they doing to attract traffic. Don’t copy their ideas, just simply get a feel for what seems to work. For example, do they have a lot of followers on social media? Determine which social media sites seem to draw the most traffic for your particular product/service and spend quality time devoted to developing a page for these sites.

Stalk Forums
Search for forums that have an interest in products/services that are similar to yours. Join groups that your target market have joined and read what questions are being asked and what negative responses are being made. This will give you an insight to what the most frequent and talked about problems are among your target audience. Forums are also great places to ask questions and compile the answers provided by your target audience.

Keep in mind that it is all about perspective and with effective research, you can determine the need your target audience has for your product/service. It is essential that you aim your marketing specifically towards your target audience. In order to discover your target audience, you need to think like a customer, which means research what they want, what they like and don’t like about specific products and make the effort to delivery what your audience is looking for.

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We appreciate you

One of the best gifts you can give someone is a show of appreciation. When customers learn they are appreciated it can potentially change their entire approach to patronizing your business. Appreciated customers feel valued more. They recognize that someone or something values their patronage. That builds recurring business which is what customer appreciation is all about. As a business owner it is vital to show your customers that you care. This brings them back and generates new customers from word of mouth. Try these easy yet memorable gestures that show you care.

Serve gourmet coffee and muffins the first Monday monthly. Customers can slow down from a busy day and indulge in a comforting treat. Use a designated area and decorate with mood music and softer lighting and make this moment more special.

Make buttons that say ‘customers are special’ and give one to every customer that comes to your store. Use friendly colors like yellow and green colors sure to bring a warm smile.

Give a pampering coupon such as a massage or pedicure to your top returning customers. This is sure to generate new business once word gets out how well you treat your customers.

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How high end business cards will benefit your company

One of the most important aspects of running a business is reaching out to potential clients and customers. Any business owner must be fully prepared to provide basic information about their business to anyone who wants or needs it. Many business owners attend industry specific meetings at least once a year. A business owner may also met with clients and customers each day who come into their store or just interact with people when shopping or at a local gym. One of the easiest and best ways to provide information and promote your business at the same time is via the use of high end business cards.

A Good Business Card

The right business card is vital. A business card represents the owner to other people. A good business card can help convey all necessary information about a business in a single space. A business card should have information that includes the business name, the industry and the person’s contact number. For example, a restaurant owner should have a card with the exact name of the business as well as the location of the place and the basic cuisine served there.

Custom Business Cards

A plain, basic card is nice. A high end business card is even better. Creating a custom designed business card can help any business owner reach out to customers directly in a familiar and unobtrusive way. A custom designed card will typically include the use of multiple colors, thick card paper as well as effective design elements. A high end card can help any owner convey professionalism and attention to detail. Many clients and customers are more likely to save cards that look great and have interesting and unexpected design elements that stand out.

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Looking to Boost Your Direct Mail Response Rate? Follow These Three Fundamentals

When you are sending a direct mailer out to market your business, you want to get a response from consumers. However, there are a few common mistakes that businesses make when sending out these pieces of marketing material. That can impact and hurt the response they see. Sometimes, taking a step back and getting back to basics will help increase your response rate and bring customers in. Here are three fundamentals you should follow when sending out direct mail to potential customers.

Sell Solutions to Problems

Consumers are inundated with commercials, radio ads and other pieces of mail that urge them to buy products. However, most consumers disregard that as they don’t see the point or purpose to those products. Instead of advertising a product, advertise a solution to a problem that they may have that your product can fix. This allows them to see how your product could be beneficial to them and why they should consider it. For example, If you are selling gutter guards, telling consumers to buy your product may not illicit a high response. However, asking consumers if they are tired of cleaning their gutters and then pointing out your gutter guards can do that may be enticing.

Fill Your Mailer with Useful Content

When you are designing a direct mailer, it is easy to get caught up in the design element of the promotional item. This may include colors and graphics. However, it is important that your mailer contain enough content for the consumer to learn about your product or service. As such, make your piece both eye-catching and informational.

Make Sure Consumers Know How to Contact You

The last thing you need to do when sending out direct mailers is to ensure that your business name and contact information is prominently displayed on the mailer. If consumers don’t know where your store is located, what your website is or the phone number, they aren’t going to search you out. As such, make sure your contact information is either in a large font or is listed in multiple places on your mailer.

Failing to follow these three direct mail fundamentals can result in a poor conversion rate. This is a waste of your marketing dollars. Selling solutions to problems, filling your mailer with useful information and making sure consumers know how to contact you can all increase your response rate.

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