Contrary to some popular beliefs, using printed literature to promote a small business is still a very valuable tool. Yes, technology has made it easier and faster to disseminate information, but a well done, printed marketing piece has some definite advantages. Let’s examine some of the criteria necessary to create a printed marketing piece.
- It has to help potential customers make an informed decision. Benefits must be explained, especially those that are not obvious.
- It has to educate the customers. Your product/service may be new or not previously considered so the product/service must be explained and the benefits pointed out.
- The type of printed material is also an important consideration. It can be anything from a post card to a catalogue of products or services. A simple flyer is great in the early stages of customer contact.
- Customers are reluctant to change from an existing vendor. This is the time to cite case histories, and make use of testimonials from satisfied customers.
- Showcase the value not the price. Stress the quality of your product/service and show how it can increase the bottom line.
- Your printed material should demonstrate that you understand your target market needs. Describe the issues facing your potential customers and how your product/service can help.
- If possible, offer value added services that will help your prospects make more efficient use of your products/services.
- Keep the material simple and to the point.
Printed material must reinforce the branding process that is used in all other advertising and marketing media. This includes your site, letterheads, business card, social media, etc. Printed literature should sell as well as inform. Branding is a result of marketing, thus the overall marketing piece design must reflect the image that the company wants to establish in the prospects mind.
Like all other marketing efforts, don’t expect to sell your product/service just because you delivered a flyer to a prospect. If there is an interest expressed on the part of your prospect, then your follow up material may be a customized package with detailed information outlining specific benefits to this particular prospect.
In my own testing, I have found that printed material has a longer shelf life than marketing material that is sent via the internet. The compelling headline of all printed material must be strong enough to attract and keep the attention of the recipient at first glance. Like all marketing efforts the use of a good graphic designer and quality printer is essential.
People have remote controls in their heads today. If you don’t catch their interest, they just click you off.
Nick J. Petra CFP www.strategicduck.com
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