Marketing Offline Like The Pros
By Charles Hopkins
Published 04/20/2006 | Marketing
Marketing offline is a great way to compliment your online campaigns. It helps target people who otherwise might not spot your online presence. Plus it helps you target people who have Internet access and email when you include your URL or web site address in all of your ads. To help you make the most of your offline marketing, here are a few tips from the pros:
1. INSERTS Ask for media kits from print publications that target your industry readers. Find out their rates for inserts. And have their advertising department help you create a marketing insert for your products and services that targets Internet users and includes your URL and email address. Do include a phone number (toll-free, if possible) for those who have technical difficulties or prefer to call.
2. TEACH - Hold affordable (or free) offline classes at a local community center or other educational facility. Share your knowledge in your area of expertise with attendees. And make sure to distribute handouts with complete contact information, including your website and email address.
Be pro-active and post-active by announcing your classes in a press release to the local media; radio, television, print publications. And follow up by inviting students to enter feedback and referrals in your website form after the class if over. Capture their contact information, enter it into your database, and follow up regularly sending them your ezine and product / service announcements, both via email and regular postal mail.
3. ORGANIZATIONS - Target your offline marketing to groups of people who will actually be interested in your product or service; i.e. local associations and organizations. Check your Yellow Pages for groups near you and find out when their meetings are. Call ahead to make sure guests are welcome. Then go and network at an easy pace, not fast. Slowly work your way into the group and make sure it would be a good fit for you; youll want to give at first, then youll receive later on (maybe after your first year, even).
Gradually distribute your business cards with your website and email address on them. Volunteer to teach about your area of expertise if the chance arises, of course distributing your marketing materials with our website and email address on them, too.
Use caution, before rushing to join during or after the first meeting. Take your time to make sure the group would be a good fit for you and your business operations. Sometimes group operations are lacking or suffer due to board member turnover, the economy, new industry laws, etc. So you might benefit from waiting to join for several months down the road, or trying a different group all together.
So reach out and advertise offline to compliment your online strategy. And remember to include your website and email address on all of your marketing tools.