In today’s market, it is not only important to utilize different media channels, but to also drive a consistent message through each. Many “old school” tactics still have an important role to play in any business marketing plan and can have a big impact on your branding and marketing decisions. Social media and e-mail marketing are important aspects of any businesses’ online marketing strategy. But what about more traditional marketing activities such as direct mail, trade shows, and trade events? Here’s why they matter and what you can do to dust them off and bring them up to date.
There’s no doubt email marketing represents a great way for small business to stay in touch with prospects and customers. But email also has its downside; building an in-house list takes time, and only a small percentage of targeted customers open them. Of course, direct mail isn’t perfect either. A direct mail campaign can be slightly expensive, but for small businesses trying to reach a local market, flyers, postcards, letters, and even print newsletters can be effective. The best sector for direct mail marketing is the B2B,( business-to-business) sector. B2B generally fares about 60% better than the consumer market on first-time responses.
If you are in the B2B arena, trade shows are hard to ignore. In fact, trade shows represent 20 percent of most B2B company’s marketing budget. Why? Trade shows are a big investment for exhibitors and attendees alike, which means the folks who are there are serious about buying and selling. According to the Center for Exhibition Industry Research, 72 percent of trade show attendees say these events influence their buying decisions. Don’t overlook trade shows when your customers are there searching for you!
Another tactic is good old advertising. With planning and persistence, print, online, and mobile advertising are great long-term brand builders. The effects of your flyer or ad consistently being in the same place at the same time every week, such as in the Sunday paper, gives your brand and products a rock solid, dependable, feel to your customers.
So don’t let the “old school” handle stop you and your company from using an updated, modernized version of direct mail marketing, the trade show circuit, or printed advertising to bring in new sales and customers.