Given the many and varied forms of electronic communication, you may consider printed marketing materials to be a thing of the past. But nothing could be further from the truth. Though you may spend a good portion of your marketing time online, considering the world at large, a note business still makes its mark with the printed word. Imagine attending a networking meeting or conference without a business card. You need marketing pieces that you can leave behind. You need marketing materials that convey your message, materials that represent your note business accurately and professionally.
Fortunately, online printing companies are making it easier and cheaper than ever to have professional marketing materials at your fingertips. Heavyweight papers, full saturated colors and small runs can all be yours at a fraction of their cost a decade or two ago. Here are some suggestions on how to best take advantage of the printing options available now.
Choose marketing materials that you will actually use. With business cards, letterhead and envelopes at the ready, you can respond to almost any inquiry quickly and professionally. A simple brochure or a one page flyer gives you the opportunity to expound on your key messages, share contact information and do it all in an easy to read, graphically interesting way. Marketing professionals will tell you to purchase only the materials you know you will use, and today’s short runs allow note businesses to purchase the small quantities they often need. You may go through 1000 business cards in a year but only 250 pieces of letterhead and envelopes. There is no need to waste your marketing dollars and paper that will go unused or become outdated.
Choose a layout that attracts attention. In print as in person, first impressions count. An attractive, eye-catching, professional look for your note business will help build your brand and your reputation. Don’t skimp on design. Graphic designers know the hows and whys of choosing one illustration, photograph or typeface over another and how to pull them together to create a compelling marketing piece. Fortunately finding design services to fit your budget is easier than ever. In addition to local, professional graphic designers and aspiring design students, crowdsourcing sites like www.crowdspring.com and www.99designs.com offer a whole new way to purchase design services and is very popular. You post your design project, set your price and then watch as designs are submitted from around the world.
Choose language that compels the reader. Choosing the right words to promote your note business is as important as creating the right graphics. If you are writing a one page direct mail letter, for example, you will want to think about the key points that best highlight, differentiate and promote your note business. What sets you apart from your peers? What makes you better than the competition? Why do note holders like to work with you? If finding these words turn out to be harder than it sounds, you are not alone. Try recording yourself explaining your services to an imaginary prospect and then use your spoken word to help write your copy.
Though it may seem counterintuitive in today’s increasingly paperless note business, printed materials are still essential marketing tools. They have the staying power not necessarily found in electronic communication, where information can be easily overlooked or deleted. With business cards, brochures, flyers and postcards, you can convey your note business’s message long after your first contact. That’s because, in print, first impressions last. Remember, success demands action! Keep on marketing, it’s going to work! TWITA! (That’s What I’m Talking About!) ☺