There is a tendency in today’s digital age for businesses to focus solely on their online presence while neglecting offline marketing activities. According to research by Red Website Design, more than a third of senior marketing professionals predict that digital marketing will account for more than 50% of marketing spend by the end of 2019. Besides this, 28% of marketers have reduced their traditional advertising budget to fund digital marketing activities. As an increasing number of consumers transition to communicating and shopping online, it makes sense for businesses to focus efforts on boosting their online brand.
But are those who neglect more traditional offline marketing strategies missing a trick? Can offline and online marketing activities work together to achieve business objectives? Check out our top five brilliant offline marketing strategies that will support your digital strategy and help drive traffic to your website.
- Work Uniforms and Branded Corporate Clothing
Work uniforms are a great way to get your brand name in front of your target audience. Uniforms designed with care can turn your staff into walking adverts for your business and your website. Make sure you choose colors that are consistent with your online and offline branding and marketing. Include your website’s URL to pack an extra brand-boosting punch.
Branded clothing is a relatively low-cost way to spread the word about your company and increase brand awareness. Include items emblazoned with your website URL in goody bags at trade shows, give away free t-shirts to customers in-store or award branded clothing as a competition prize. Consumers will soon become familiar with the colors, styles and messaging of your company, helping to build trust and loyalty.
- Offer Free Training and Support
Everyone loves receiving something for free. If you’re a business owner, chances are you’re a bit of an expert in your chosen industry. So, set yourself up as a thought leader who values customers and prospects by offering free workshops, networking events, or presentations. Free training and support may seem like a significant commitment of time and resources when there’s no immediate income stream attached. But it’s a great opportunity to humanize your brand, meet prospects in person, convert leads into customers, and to raise brand awareness.
Where possible, use your work premises for events. That way, you can be transparent about how you run your business and ensure people trust you. Make sure you make the most of workshops and presentations to drive traffic to your site. Produce fliers, feedback forms, banners, and other marketing materials, with your website address prominently featured. Also, don’t forget to include any online promotions on your slides.
- Direct Mail Campaigns
Direct mail isn’t dead. Sending physical mail to prospects and customers may feel like an outdated approach in the face of social media marketing, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Pay Per Click (PPC). But it still delivers a healthy Return On Investment (ROI). Research by the Direct Marketing Association revealed direct mail averaged a response rate of 4.4% while email achieved just 0.12%. The ROI of direct marketing may be lower than that of email, due to the low cost of sending bulk marketing emails. But the cost to acquire that all-important new customer is significantly lower for direct mail.
People receive hundreds of marketing emails each day, but postal mail is more sparse and somehow, more personal. Send leaflets or brochures including special offers and clearly signpost your URL to drive traffic to your website.
- Old School Advertising — Print, TV, and Radio
Despite the rise of online news sites, kindles and social media, many people are still devoted to print magazines, TV, and radio. Buying ad space in a trade event guide or relevant industry publication can deliver a healthy ROI. The combination of the face-to-face meeting and print advertising can be a powerful one. It’s easy to drive traffic to your site through a mix of verbal interactions and physical marketing literature.
There is an argument that consumers are so overwhelmed by digital marketing via social media, email, and SMS, they become blind to it. Print advertising stands out as something a little different that requires more effort from both the marketer and their audience.
You’ll need a bigger budget, but TV is still an effective advertising medium — although this has shifted from “live” television to streamed channels such as Netflix. Radio adverts could be a happy medium. These are more affordable than TV but still, allow you to plug your website via catchy tunes and short bursts of information.
- Don’t Forget the Little Things
There are countless opportunities to use offline marketing to generate traffic for your website. No opportunity is too small to be ignored. Advertise your website address every chance you get.
Make sure your business cards and those of your staff include the website plus company branding and logos. Give these out at networking events and trade shows to combine the impact of a physical meeting with strong branding.
Add your website details to signage around the office and at events. Depending on its size, your workplace is likely to have a wide range of visitors each day, from partners and customers to delivery personnel and prospective employees. You can increase traffic to your site by adding the company website address to signage around the building or venue.
Wherever and whenever you have an audience, try to achieve maximum exposure for your brand and your website.
An Integrated Approach Will Reap Rewards
There’s no need to choose between digital and traditional marketing strategies. A well thought out marketing plan will ensure both approaches complements one another. Take every opportunity to gain maximum exposure for your website via offline channels while using your online presence to boost engagement with offline activities such as workshops and networking events. The most effective marketing campaigns combine traditional and digital activities that align with your overarching business goals.