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Most online marketers will tell you that old school brick-and-mortar advertising techniques are long dead- digital is now the way-to-go. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and other social networking are your friends, and online followers have more income-generating potential than people on the street.
And you know what, they're not exactly wrong per se. There are lots of success stories about small businesses who managed to get ahead of larger competition through the use of online marketing alone. Viral campaigns have the capacity to generate thousands of leads; and their costs are almost next to nothing. Creating a social media account is free, plus there are lots of software that can help entrepreneurs manage their accounts with just a click of the button.
But you know what, relying too much on online marketing tactics while ignoring offline marketing can be a bit dangerous for some businesses. Not all people use social media or the Internet, and some might actually find it off-putting to see their favorite stores posting embarrassing Facebook updates every hour for the sake of online presence. You must have heard of big brands committing social media blunders that have cost them a lot of customers.
So, in order to be successful in marketing, you need to employ a healthy mix of both online and offline marketing strategies in your campaigns.
Offline Marketing Defined
Offline marketing is defined as the process of promoting goods and services through non-online channels such as billboards, pamphlets, signs, TV and radio ads. It's pretty much old-school marketing. Contrary to popular belief, offline marketing is still going strong; large corporations to small mom and pop stores are still using old school tactics to draw in customers and drive sales. Offline marketing is a kind of marketing that most people are used to, regardless of age, race, nationality, and gender, so it's practically universal in scope.
Offline marketing tactics tend to be more expensive than online marketing, so businesses often plan their campaigns carefully so that their efforts both in the real and virtual realms won't go to waste. Traditional marketing tactics are now often used in conjunction with online ones, so that both form of marketing can complement each other perfectly. Some companies tend to place QR codes on their printing materials like business cards, flyers or pull up banners and combine offline and online campaigns. When QR code is scanned it would lead a customer to the company's official site.
Here are a couple of good examples which can give you a good idea on how you can approach your marketing campaigns.
Real life ads with #hashtags. Some businesses prominently display hashtags on flyers and newsletters, often encouraging the recipient to post their social media updates with the hashtag included. These customers are then often rewarded with freebies and other in-store goodies. The hashtags used are unique to that particular offline campaign alone, so that it can be easily tracked online.
Example of hashtag marketing:
Using QR codes to drive engagement. A more interactive form of engagement involves using QR codes on TV or newspaper ads. The QR code is scanned on a person's smartphone, which in turn, can provide valuable content in the form of coupons, games, and other freebies.
Example of marketing using QR codes:
If you plan to combine these two types of marketing you can design your flyers or business cards the way you want. In case you don't have designers in your company it would be advisable to hire digital printing service to get the job done.
Here you can see some examples of flyers, banners and business cards that might help you out: