Offline and online marketing are made to be combined. The perceived superiority of one over the other in the media does them a great disservice, as together, these strategies yield much better results than each individually.
Seeing how a lot of people nowadays are online, the advantage of social media is undisputed. However, the offline component gives much more heart and tangibility between the customer and the brand, that it cannot be overlooked.
It creates a connection that no other marketing strategy can surpass. Which is why these eight tips are our favourites for creating the best online and offline marketing combo.
Offline Objects Driving Online Engagement
One way to drive more online traffic is through QR codes and custom URLs. After a promotional event, a trade show, or a conference, the business cards and promotional merchandise you handed out can serve as a hook.
Print out a custom URL link on them, which visitors can follow online to sign up for your newsletter. Upon signing up, ensure they receive a free e-book, coupon, discount, or some other free digital goodies.
Brands can hold marketing campaigns that provide an exciting experience for users, and free marketing for you, both offline and online. You can organize an offline scavenger hunt with landmarks or objects that are related to your brand and company name. Alternatively, your marketing team can set up specific stands or posters that people will have to locate and photograph. The “scavenged” items from the list can then be uploaded online for a chance to earn a reward. This keeps the conversation about your brand going, and presents it in a more casual light.
Listening to the Customers
You can put polls on your company’s Facebook page, or the website itself, where people can vote on various offline creations and promotions. For example, what branded promotional material would they rather see next, how many of them plan to attend your next meet up, or which poster for a workshop they prefer.
Some larger companies also ask of the users which country they’d like to see them visit next, for a conference, for example. Getting significant attention online can really push your offline marketing forward.
User-Generated Brand Promotion
Most people love showing their brand loyalty online. The more they trust the brand, the more vocal they are about it. Which is why it’s good to use this as an opportunity to organize an event where people can take selfies with your products, or using your services, and make them witty, or thematic in some way.
Influencers Shopping at the Store or Attending an Event
On social media, influencers are normally being incorporated as spokespeople for the brand. They are usually seen trying out the brand and giving their reviews. However, it has also proved effective to gift the influencers with gift cards they can spend in the physical shop. They film the whole shopping experience, which can inevitably increase your foot traffic.
Workshops and Conferences
When attending conferences, especially if you’re one of the presenters, it’s good to entice the audience with additional information, or a continuation of the lecture online. Handing out booklets that contain all the relevant online information proves to be quite effective. It requires a specific call to action: allows people to leave reviews, write comments, download additional material, and so on.
On upcoming trade shows, it’s good to start a hashtag on Twitter and Instagram that will get everyone talking about your presence there. Then, having banners with your online information with eye-catching designs can be of great help to get you noticed. Once at the trade show, attendees can leave their usernames, and take a photo with the marketers for a shout-out on the company’s official profile page. This gives a more personal offline and online experience.
Reward and Coupon Apps
For those companies that boast a somewhat tech-savvier department, it can be extremely useful to build an app that keeps track of purchases at the store, and holds coupons received online, to be redeemed at the store. Certain movie theatres do this for ticket purchases through the app. The customers receive points for each purchase, and when accumulated, certain numbers of points yield discounts and coupons for free things.
A good marketing campaign can combine the best of the online and offline worlds and get a brand’s popularity soaring. You can use the popularity of social media, and people’s need for a brief moment under the spotlight to create events and campaigns that give traction to your business.
The outreach is much greater online, but the connection made offline is unsurpassable, which is why these two strategies complement each other so nicely. Ultimately, it gives the impression of interactivity, which people always prefer than simply consuming media.