How do you use offline marketing to maximise online sales?
There’s no denying that today’s marketing strategy is becoming more and more focussed on digital and online strategies. Indeed, digital now accounts for over half of all marketing spend, and is growing year-on-year.
But marketing has always been a complex and multi-faceted beast, and what works for one customer or business might not necessarily work for another.
The best marketing strategies, like a full bodied red, are rounded and balanced. According to AS Advertising, campaigns that combine print and online advertising achieve up to a 25% higher response rate than online campaigns alone.
Think about the big picture
A good marketing strategy is thought through and planned well in advance.
As we discussed in our post about seasonal marketing opportunities, marketing plans need to be communicated across the organisation so that all parts of the company are ready to respond positively to surges in sales in response to a campaign, event or advertisement.
Despite the current dominance of online advertising, 69% of adults still trust their local newspapers, and it is estimated that 54% of customers are more likely to buy a new product when learning about it from a newspaper or magazine.
Don’t discount print media, but if you’re looking to drive online sales, make sure the printed advert contains prominent, clear references to your URL, a QR code or other online content (such as a voucher, or details not contained in the advertisement) that means customers HAVE to access your website first.
This enables you to track conversion rates and analyse ROI more easily.
Radio and TV
If you have the budget, TV and radio advertisements give wide coverage and allow you to communicate a more complex message quickly and effectively.
Be sure to do your market research though and ensure you use the channel most appropriate to your target market to maximise ROI. To link back into online sales and enable conversion rate tracking, try directing customers to a specific landing page on your website.
Direct mail is still cited by many people as more personal and more likely to spur them to action than print advertising.
As with all offline advertising, ensuring continuity between your off- and on-line presence is essential to ensuring customer confidence in your brand, so make sure that when your customers do visit your website, they see the same message communicated in the direct mail marketing. Again, direct customer to a specific landing page or telephone number using clearly-visible URLs or QR codes, and you can quickly and effectively monitor how well your conversion rates are working.
Never underestimate the power of personal relationships in business, whether it is B2B or customer facing sales.
People buy from people, and people do business with people. Use trade shows to enhance your brand awareness, meet new contacts and increase your customer base.
Having a great stand that catches the customer’s eye is affordable for most small businesses and can be used to drive online sales through the clear positioning of URLs and QR codes, as well as printed material such as leaflets and business cards.
The new kid on the block, moment marketing is, well, having a moment.
The basic premise is that a real-time offline event creates and drives on-line traffic. Think big brands capitalising on world events, offline marketing stunts that create a social media buzz, and even hashtags at a conference. Here’s some great examples but the key for all businesses is to stay alert for any opportunities in the real world that could drive online sales. Be ready to capitalise, and online sales will follow.