There is no doubt that social media is an important component to your marketing strategy. According to 2018 statistics, 77 percent of millennials said they’ve purchased items after seeing them on Facebook. Nearly half of all marketing professionals note that they’re using social media to increase brand awareness.
If your focus is on your social media reach, it’s understandable. Still, social media marketing alone won’t work as well as combining those efforts with other marketing campaigns to increase your conversion, following, and overall brand loyalty. For instance, email marketing campaigns are very effective, with 77 percent of consumers saying they prefer email for permission-based sales material.
Another issue with social media marketing is that it’s difficult to gain traction and stand above your competition using only digital marketing. It’s not something you should overlook, but it’s definitely not the only type of marketing in which your company should invest time and energy.
If you’ve considered adding offline marketing to increase your social media following, there are a lot of options that can help you reap immediate benefits.
Offline Marketing That Complements Your Social Media Efforts
A lot of companies put all of their effort into social media marketing because let’s face it, it’s a powerful tool. Social media marketing done well can be extremely time-consuming. You need to build each profile, commit time to maintaining those profiles, plan and launch campaigns, and constantly check your analytics to revise your strategy.
Offline marketing also seems archaic to a lot of people. They think it’s too costly, too time consuming, or that most of their audience won’t pay attention.
When done well, offline marketing can be cost-effective. You’ll also notice that your audience responds well to the personalized touch that offline gives them. Small acts of extending your brand into their everyday real world make them stop and take notice. Using these offline marketing campaigns and tying them into your social media presence means that you can grow your following with an audience that’s targeted for your offerings.
Ways to Use Offline Marketing Effectively to Increase Your Social Media Reach
Traditional marketing —such as printed materials, billboards, and television advertising — still works. If it didn’t, you wouldn’t see major companies using these types of campaigns so regularly. You might not have the budget or time to try every type of offline marketing strategy, but here are a few that are relatively inexpensive and can help bolster your following fairly quickly:
- Signage and banners in your location: You need great signage to attract street traffic. That’s a given for a brick-and-mortar location because it’s the logical way to catch your customers’ attention and help them find you. However, awnings, signs, and banners can help you do more than put a bull’s eye above your door so your customers know where to park. Create banners that include information about where you reside online. Today’s audience often looks up businesses and products online before deciding to purchase. Giving people the information to look you up means that you’re not only attracting ready-to-buy customers, but you have a permanent ad that passers-by can use to find you online for more contact.
- Attend conferences and events: If you attend events or conferences in your industry, especially if you’re speaking, this poses the perfect opportunity to include your online information for attendees. The audience here is already geared to partner with your brand, so it’s a targeted following. Often, companies are already attending these events but they don’t realize that they can promote their social media profiles, as well as their website.
- Plan events: Hosting events is a great way to build buzz. This works if you have a product launch or anniversary. You can have banners and printed material for guests to take that help them find your Facebook or other social media pages to follow. You should also include your social media information on business cards to hand out at events you plan, as well as those you attend.
- Donate products or services to charities: Donating to local events and charities is a great way to build customer loyalty within the community. Not only will you have the opportunity to get prospective customers to try your business, but those who hold that event in high esteem will also appreciate your charitable efforts. Be sure to include information on how to follow your brand online in any advertising space the event gives you, as well as attached to the items you’re donating.
- Encourage in-person customers to follow you by using incentives: In-person customers are your biggest advocates. If they don’t currently follow you online, you can offer incentives, such as coupons, for future purchases.
- Printed materials that serve dual purposes: Printed materials — such as flyers, business cards, and letters — already serve a sales purpose, but many companies miss the opportunity to gain social media followers through this channel. Small changes, such as including your online addresses, can make those printed marketing materials far more effective in the long run.
Social media marketing is one of the most popular strategies because it can reap great ROI and you can easily see the analytics on any campaign. Adding offline marketing efforts is often a matter of fine-tuning your strategy and can help you effectively engage a larger audience.
Author bio: Abhishek Sinha is a project manager at Bannerbuzz, a state-of-the-art printing technology with more than 25 years of experience in the sign business. Sinha plays the lead role in planning, executing, monitoring, controlling and closing projects.