Digital is much more convenient, but print media can be essential in running a company that solely exists online. Though many people believe that print is on the way out, it’s still more effective than we give it credit for.
Think about how brick-and-mortar businesses use print. They mail out postcards; they install window decals with their hours and contact info; they hang banners or place sidewalk signs during a big sale. Though you may not have a physical storefront, print media can still be equally helpful to you:
- Print engages more of the senses than digital media, making it memorable. As customers feel and smell paper, they gain tactile memories to associate with you.
- Print pushes you to consider how well your visual design translates across different media. While your logo and colors may look great on a monitor, how well would they do in paper and ink?
- Print helps you test your ability to engage your audience without falling back on a digital crutch. When there aren’t animations or clickable components available to hold viewers’ attention, how appealing is your design?
- Print gives you a tangible way to build credibility with your target audience. By consistently displaying your logo, you convey that you are serious about your business, which builds brand awareness in your community.
- Print makes you more personable. It reminds people that you are the face behind your business, especially if you include a picture of yourself or a short handwritten note on your print promotions.
Because you do so much online, you don’t interact with the local business sphere as much as you would. Still, you shouldn’t overlook the power of a loyal local fan base. You need a strong foundation of retained customers to drive profit, since loyal shoppers tend to spend more than new customers. Take advantage local connections through print.
More Internet-based companies are employing print media than you may realize. If you’ve ever ordered from a larger online company, you may have discovered in your mailbox an enduring symbol of the power of print: catalogs. They drive impressive online profits because of the convenient browsing experience they provide. Shoppers can note the items they want, then go online and order when they’re ready. With apps like Pounce, they can even interact digitally with their catalogs through their smartphones.
If you think a small catalog would help increase your traffic, start with a limited print run to test the waters, and adjust your marketing strategy accordingly. Remember, a catalog doesn’t have to be forty pages to be worthwhile. A five-page overview of your product categories and popular items would easily pique interest.
Circulars are also crucial in creating buyer awareness. Just seeing your favorite brands is enough to remind them of your products and service. Testing this out on your local area is easy, as appealing photo postcards are even simpler to produce and mail than catalogs.
What does print have to do with social media? Believe it or not, they connect well, particularly in brand voice. An engaging and consistent voice leads fans of your print campaigns to check you out on social media, and makes your social fans pay attention to your print ads.
In addition to using a consistent, shareable tone, you can help your print and social marketing work together in these ways:
- Engage multiple generations of consumers. While elders tend to prefer print and younger shoppers search primarily online, neither group sticks exclusively to one format.
- Drive social traffic with printed calls-to-action. Mention hashtags that fans can use to join the latest conversation on Twitter, or encourage them to like you on Facebook for special promotions.
- Share your online reviews offline. This makes your reputation more accessible to those who may not immediately hop online looking for reviews.
Print and social media are not mutually exclusive. Fans will appreciate the effort you put into both, and the traffic your store receives will be proof!
All too often, businesses find themselves on a shoestring marketing budget. Unfortunately, this goes against the adage that you have to spend money to make money. You don’t have to get into this trap if you spend your marketing dollars wisely by choosing the most effective and quality solutions at the best pricing. What we’re talking about is marketing that has value through big impact versus marketing that costs very little and likewise has little impact. Two pocket-friendly approaches are full-color brochures and flyers. With the right quality, approach and distribution your business can yield a great return on investment from these tried-and-true promo pieces.
Here’s your guide to brochure and flyer marketing on a budget:
To get the most value out of your brochures and flyers, you have to first understand the cost to put each piece in the hands of your customers. Though it can be tempting to order the minimum quantity, if you think of terms of cost-per-piece (or cost to distribute each piece) ordering higher quantities actually offers the lowest prices, since printing costs less in volume. This doesn’t mean that you have to go overboard, but you should print all the brochures and flyers you know you’re going to use all at once. Here’s an example from PsPrint’s instant online printing quote widget:
8.5-inch by 11-inch brochure printed full color both sides on 100-pound gloss text with a letter-fold.
As you can see, you can reach far more customers by printing 1,000 or 2,000 brochures for a minimal overall price increase and a greatly reduced price per piece. When it comes to a smart, long-term marketing plan, printing as many flyers and brochures as you can use can pay huge dividends.
Distribution begins with your prospect list and ends with the method by which you will deliver your brochures and flyers to those locations. If you can enlist the free help of friends and family, the least expensive way to distribute your brochures and flyers is with a street team that hands them to passers-by or puts them on doorknobs. The important thing here is to make sure your marketing dollars stretch as far as possible by only distributing your brochures and flyers to qualified prospects that meet a certain customer demographic. You wouldn’t want to hand out a circus flyer at a heavy metal rock show, for instance; but you might want to pass out flyers there if you’re selling band T-shirts.
The same is true if you’re going to be mailing your brochures. The better your list, the better your return, which means each marketing piece is more effective and your marketing campaign is essentially less expensive. Use an online mailing list tool such as the one at PsPrint to help you define a good list. Though it is tempting to blanket the market with your brochures and flyers, if your product or service doesn’t have a very broad appeal then you will be wasting your money.
If you are mailing brochures, you’ll also want to take advantage of a good mail house that can use its indicia to get you a bulk mailing rate. Some printers such as PsPrint offer everything from list services to printing and mailing services; and to save on headaches and postage its best to stick with an all-in-one company like this.
Put it all together
So how much does a budget-friendly brochure or flyer campaign cost? When it comes to flyers, and if you can get free help, all you’ll have is the cost of the printing. But let’s take a look at a direct-mail brochure campaign, assuming you’ll be printing and distributing 2,000 full-color 100-pound gloss letter-fold brochures with PsPrint:
|Mailing list||69.00 (Assuming 2,000 Los Angeles area 40- to 41-year-old men who make more than $40,000/year)|
In this example, you’re able to print and send your brochure to 2,000 prospects for less than 65 cents each, and since they’re highly targeted you can expect a good response rate. Assuming you get a good response rate of 5 percent and that you net $50 per sale, your brochure marketing campaign in this example would gross $5,000, which means a net profit of $3,700.37. Not bad, eh?
As you can see, using your marketing dollars wisely means understanding long-term costs and the value of good leads. Simply spending as little as possible will do little more than just that: spend your money. Taking an educated approach, however, to budget brochure and flyer marketing means you’ll spend less earning each sale and drive your return on investment through the roof.