In the best marketing campaigns, online and offline tactics are seamlessly used in conjunction. If you are looking for strategies to enhance your current marketing campaign, here are six tips for incorporating digital tactics with your St. Louis business printing:
Provide Multiple Touches
Above all, integrating your online and offline efforts allows you to multiply and diversify the amount of promotional touches you present to your audience. Studies suggest that in order to become ready to buy, your audience requires six to eight marketing touches. The more expensive your product, the higher that number gets.
Needless to say, reaching this number of touches with either printed materials or through digital marketing exclusively is both costly and ineffective. Combining both, however, enables you to get your brand in front of your audience in a greater variety of ways. Ideally, you should connect your touches, including links and calls to action to your website from your printed materials.
Track Success Online
Including links on your print materials can also help you track the success of your print campaigns. The effectiveness of mailed postcards and stationery advertising flags can be increased when you know how much of your audience is following up because of them. On each printed piece, include an offer for an incentive on your website so you can determine just how many members of your target audience found the material interesting enough to follow its call to action.
Analytics software like Google Analytics enables you to go even further, tracking how your users from a specific source (printed material) behave after landing on your website. It takes some time to set up, but ultimately, tracking the success of your printed efforts online can become a major piece in determining the ROI of your business printing.
Incorporate QR Codes Wisely
One of the easiest ways to connect printed materials to your online presence is through QR codes. These square barcodes enable smartphone users to visit your website or social media account with a simple scan, rather than having to type in the URL manually.
But to take advantage of QR codes, your users will need both a smartphone and an app that can accomplish the scanning. So do they work? Marketers have struggled with this question for years, with no definitive answer so far. Generally speaking, their effectiveness depends greatly on their use.
Only use QR codes on printed materials for which your audience has the time to scan. To account for members of your audience who may not have a smartphone or the right app, also include a URL to cover all of your bases. QR codes can enhance your online-offline integration, but only if used wisely and in the right places.
Enhance Audiences Targeting
Thanks to ever-increasing digital-targeting possibilities, you can place digital ads on search engines and social media outlets that reach only users on a custom list you upload. Especially if your printed efforts include a direct mail campaign, this feature (generally referred to as “custom audiences” by Facebook and Google) can help you narrow your focus and provide the above-mentioned multiple touches of a singular audience.
For example, you may choose to send a brochure to a mailing list you have developed for your business. On its own, that brochure may generate some awareness and action from your audience. But if you also run a digital campaign to the exact list after sending your direct mail, awareness and recall of your brand will increase exponentially.
Include A Social Call To Action
Some businesses go as far as including social buttons on their printed materials. But in reality, few members of your target audience will actually find your organization’s social presence if they don’t get a tangible benefit out of it. Including social buttons (such as Facebook’s logo and your company page’s URL) without context is unsuccessful.
Instead, incorporate a prompt to visit your social media outlets on the material you’re printing. Perhaps you are running an online contest, or you simply want users to find out more information about your brand. Including a reason for your audience to visit your social media page makes it much more likely that they actually will.
Of course, all of the above ways to integrate your digital marketing and printed materials can only be successful if you convey a consistent brand image. For example, if a member of your target audience receives your postcard and follows that up with a visit to your website, but the two do not match visually and creatively, one of two things may happen:
- Your visitor will not perceive your website as part of the same promotional effort as your postcard, rendering your efforts ineffective.
- Your visitor will experience cognitive dissonance, the state of mind in which they realize subconsciously that something is not quite right. They may recognize both the postcard and the website as coming from the same brand, but due to cognitive dissonance, they will perceive that brand to be less credible or honest.
Neither is a positive outcome for your marketing and branding initiatives. Visual and creative consistency is key, especially if your marketing approach includes and integrates both online and offline efforts.
Ultimately, no aspect of your marketing strategy should be isolated. If you rely on printed materials but also have a web and social presence, both should communicate well with each other to provide your users with a consistent and convincing brand identity. This integration will not only help you provide multiple touches to your audience, but ultimately will ensure that your ROI increases and your business flourishes.