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Aug 06

4 Essential Small Business Offline Marketing Strategies

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So much of the focus of modern marketing involves the internet. While there’s certainly a place for content marketing, Facebook Ads, SEO, social media and other online marketing tactics, you don’t have to limit yourself to these. In fact, with so many businesses today concentrating on this, you can often gain an edge by seeking out creative offline techniques. With this in mind, let’s look at some of the top ways to market your small business that don’t require an internet connection.

Direct Mail

Direct mail is one of the oldest marketing techniques of all — and one that seems out of date in the digital age. Nevertheless, it’s still quite effective to mail out coupons, postcards or local mailers to people in your area. You can also buy targeted mailing lists if you want to focus on a certain niche market. I’ve found that direct mail is also a good tactic to use in connection with your online methods. For example, you can send people to your website or Facebook page. At the same time, you can simply invite them to stop in your business or send them a coupon without any need to send them to an online destination.

Text Message Marketing

As my own business specializes in SMS (text message) marketing, I obviously recommend it. Because it’s a modern, high-tech method, people don’t always associate it with offline marketing. However, reaching people via text is actually an efficient alternative to email and social media. One of the biggest advantages of text messages is that people read them far more often than emails.

With permission-based text message marketing, you can tell your customers about your latest products, sales, special events or anything that’s relevant to your business. You can also combine SMS with other marketing strategies.

Speaking Engagements

Some people are natural public speakers while others find the very prospect terrifying. The fact is, giving live presentations can be a powerful way to position yourself as an authority and gain new clients. If this sounds a little daunting, keep in mind that you’ll probably be speaking in front of small groups, at least at first. Think of venues such as local libraries, community centers and business events. You might also organize a meetup in your area.

Think of a topic where you can educate your audience about something they’ll be interested in. No matter what your business, you can probably come up with something. If you own a restaurant or any food-related business, you can discuss recipes or the history or a certain type of cooking. If you’re in a health profession, you can provide fitness or diet tips. Other possibilities include home maintenance tips, gardening or financial advice.

Networking

Networking is a familiar idea but nowadays it often refers to social media and other online tactics. Don’t overlook local networking in your own community. This includes participating in joining business associations, attending industry events and handing out business cards. One effective type of networking is partnering with other businesses for joint ventures. It’s often beneficial to team up with people who are selling complementary products or services. For example, real estate agents can collaborate with businesses that offer home improvement or landscaping services. You can even partner with competitors to sponsor events. Restaurants, cafes and bars, for example, can join forces to promote a food-related event.

Signage, Flyers And Billboards

Get people’s attention as they walk or drive down the street, take public transportation or glance at poster boards and billboards. For anyone with a brick and mortar business, an eye-catching sign makes a big difference. These type of promotional materials are old but still relevant. As with direct mail, you can use posters and signage to send people to your website or directly to your business location. I also remind clients that they can post SMS shortcodes on signs and posters. When it comes to offline marketing, don’t neglect the tried and true.

Offline Marketing Guidelines

Whether you employ these or other offline methods, keep these tips in mind.

• Maintain brand consistency across all of your marketing channels. If your website is formal and professional in its tone and layout, posting flyers or a billboard with a whimsical cartoon character doesn’t fit.

Always seek to connect different marketing platforms. Remember your customers lead a seamless life today, frequently switching between the online and offline worlds. They also use multiple devices. Take advantage of this by cross-promoting as much as possible.

• Use every chance to spread the word. It never hurts to leave your business card, flyer or branded merchandise wherever you happen to be.

Offline advertising is a good way to complement your online strategies and make them more effective. No matter how much time people spend online, they still need to function in the real world. It’s best to take a multichannel approach to marketing nowadays. This means finding ways to connect with your audience wherever they are, whether they’re online or offline.

Permanent link to this article: http://homebiz2bizreview.net/internet-marketing/4-essential-small-business-offline-marketing-strategies/

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