Never has it been more apparent that sales are important for your business. Times are tough but we are tougher. As Australians we have suffered through bushfires, had a massive downturn in tourism and now we are facing the COVID-19 Pandemic. No one would say that these times are business as usual but there is an opportunity right now for your business – to build your brand, retain relationships and sharpen your sales skills and to continue to add value to your clients and prospective customers.
So, what’s next for your business? What strategies do you have in place to maintain or grow your business during these uncertain times?
Our tip? Never give up, show up and take the time to re-evaluate your marketing strategy to maintain, build and grow customer relationships.
So how can print help you ask?
In a recent international survey by Two Sides, “Print and Paper in a Digital World” it was found that “When examining the attitudes towards print and digital advertising and marketing communications, the data indicates that Australians respond to print marketing and advertising, with online marketing and advertising relatively unpopular with most Australians”. (1)
The study also found that “Paper and print proved to be a trusted source of information that gives readers a deeper understanding of the story compared to their digital equivalents. These findings highlight the value of paper and print to consumers and organisations should consider print to assist in developing consumer trust and connection”. (1)
Investing in your brand image and marketing materials is a must. Having a strong brand and a consistent marketing image instils a professional aura around your business and using poorly designed, cheap economic materials can definitely give the wrong impression. Having professional graphic design is the first step towards a standout printed product that looks professional and sends a clear message about your business. We talk about this in more detail in our blog “style guide & brand audit checklist”.
Let’s take a closer look today at our top 5 printed marketing materials that will help increase your sales:
Flyers & Brochures
It’s time to think outside the box when it comes to flyers and brochures. It’s not just the design here we are talking about it’s your message. What are you selling? A product or the lifestyle or problem that it will fix? Flyers and brochures can be visual masterpieces if you want them to be. One of the biggest key attribute to flyers, brochures and even catalogues is the ‘inspiration’ trigger for potential customers. Sharing ideas, inspiring consumers to think beyond price points and explore product ranges and lifestyle improvements.
Also think about how you are distributing your flyers and brochures to both existing and potential customers. Are you sending them out with an order to encourage another sale, offering direct mail that is personalised to your key market or offering a more generic letterbox drop? Thinking about the way your customers receive the flyers is just as important as the flyer itself!
Catalogues have been a long-valued marketing tool for many businesses and while online marketing has been growing exponentially over the years, there is certainly something to be said about printed product catalogues.
Two Sides Australia writes about how over 12 million Australians say catalogues are the most useful media for providing information on what to buy in one or more product categories. In fact, catalogues remain the number one go-to media source for groceries, clothes, toys, alcohol and cosmetics, the latest media data from Roy Morgan Research shows. (2)
A must read is the case study from “The Real Media Collective” about Amazon, the online retail giant, issuing a print catalogue. The case study states “Firstly, there are no prices in the catalogue. Readers are invited to scan the images in the pages using their smartphone and be taken direct to the corresponding page on Amazon.com. Featured toys also come with QR Codes (or ‘Smilecodes’) that can be scanned in the Amazon app. Elsewhere, there’s a Holiday Wishlist, where kids can write down the toys they want to see in their stockings on Christmas Day, as well as a page of stickers to really engage their target audience. What the publication aims to do is pique the interest of its readers, gaining their attention when they’re in their own home and relaxed. It’s taken them a while, but Amazon have realised what many other retail brands have known for years: print engages the reader and gains their full attention, increasing customer loyalty and, more importantly, sales.” (3)
What creative ways can you engage with your customer base with a printed catalogue?
Are you looking for some creative options for your Business Cards? Looking for something fresh and unique to stand out from the crowd? Business cards are a must for any business. They are an essential item used to promote your brand to your clients and prospects. As an extension of your business, you need to make sure your business cards showcase you in the best possible light. The variety of cards available are endless in terms of card stock, design, shape and finish.
Perhaps this is another opportunity to think outside the box. Using odd sizes, creative die-cuts, embellishments such as foiling, embossing and spot uv, can be used quite creatively. Check out these fun examples we found “19 of the Best Business Card Design Examples” (4). We love the creativity of London-based agency Chomp’s designed business cards with a bite-size chunk missing from one corner. The shape of the card stock mimics the detail of their logo – which also bears teeth marks!
Thank you Cards
Nothing shows your customer you appreciate their business more than a good old fashioned thank you card. A clean design with your logo and a hand written ‘thank you for your business’ can really go a long way with your clients – they will truly appreciate the gesture.
Handwritten thank you notes are a proven way to earn customer loyalty. It’s the little things that can really create a ‘wow factor’ for your customers and are certainly worth the investment several times over. While you can exhibit sincere gratitude in a well-worded email, there are many occasions when you should definitely make the extra effort to mail a real thank you note. They also present the perfect opportunity to offer a value proposition such as referral incentives, gifts or even discounts off the next order – the opportunities are endless!
While we spoke about flyers, brochures and catalogues earlier, there are definitely further opportunities and products that can be effectively used in a direct mail campaign.
Sending a direct mail campaign to a specific individual, at a specific address offers a wide variety of personalisation and content tailored options. Using variable data printing to customise each individual piece of mail is a great way to market to your database.
Variable data printing offers a personalised, unique printed piece per customer by having text, graphics and images customised that are different from one piece to the next. For example, a standard letter template can offer a different name and address on each letter. A more complex example could be a car dealership offering a standard marketing mail out piece to customers who have recently purchased a car. Not only is the Dear “first name” personalised, but the image of the car purchased and service reminders, can all be personalised, while using a generic template. Variable data printing is a great way to personalise a printed piece with more than just the recipient’s first name.
We hope we have given you some ideas and inspiration to move forward with your business and that marketing effectively is your best strategy to build and grow your client relationships and sales. Re-evaluating your marketing strategy is the best approach for your business to get through this pandemic. Think outside the box, look at new innovative ways to sell and market your products. Keep pushing forward, showing up and never give up!