In the digital world, many marketers have started to forget the classic offline strategies. Before you say that they have become obsolete, allow us to explain why we disagree. As much as the online world takes over our daily lives, we still live anchored in the offline reality. People still live in houses where they get mail delivered. They go to the supermarket to buy groceries, or to entertainment parks to have fun, and they drive down the highway to get to work.
This means that they are still susceptible to be influenced by advertising and marketing messages delivered in print or audio/video format, even if your brand exists and operates mainly in the online environment.
Blending online and offline marketing strategies is an art which will help you attract more customers – especially those who are not fully familiar with the digital world. This blend of messages and promotions helps create a bridge between the offline and the online world, bringing over more customers and spreading awareness about your brand and products to people who are more grounded in the everyday reality, rather than in the virtual one.
Here are the best types of offline/online blends to support your digital business:
- Print Catalogues with QR Codes
The QR code is one of the smartest inventions which connects the offline world to the online one. By scanning the printed code with a special built-in smartphone tool, people get direct access to your digital properties – blog, online store, or social media accounts.
By adding QR codes to print catalogues, you help old-school types of people to get familiar with the concept of online shopping. At the same time, they are still able to browse products page by page, just like they are used to. As a side remark, since most promotions have moved to the digital world, people receive less and less printed catalogues. Therefore you get a higher chance of having yours read.
- Design Ads for Print and Web in the Same Style
One of the key mistakes companies make is splitting their creative work for print ads and for online ads, as if they were two different things. While it is important to track budgets and ROI separately, when it comes to design you should have an integrated approach.
People are visual beings – they recognise patterns and colour combination easier than words and slogans. Therefore, they are more likely to make a connection between your online brand and your print advertising if you use similar designs and a unified structure and layout. Your print ads and your online ads must be an extension of each other, but basically share the same idea and the same design.
- Everyone Loves Coupons – On- and Offline
Coupons or discount codes are some of the oldest and most popular tools for promotions and rewards. Anyone, no matter what generation they belong to, recognises such a promotional material and knows how to use it.
Print coupons for online sales are not a pointless complication – they can be easily given away at various trade fairs or business events, and they are a physical reminder of the interaction between the prospect and your business. Larger companies use these types of coupons with dual applicability: people can walk in a physical store or browse the online shop and enjoy the discount.
- Keep Your Business Card Stock Replenished
The age of the business card is not gone in the digital world. How would you feel if a potential business partner shook your hand and told you: “Hello, I’m John Doe from X Company and our website is www.x-company.com”? You would probably not remember the website by the end of the conversation.
How much simpler it is for John Doe to hand over his business card which includes all his credentials – phone, email, website and social media accounts. The business card is still one of the most powerful marketing tools in the digital era, so continue to order them at your preferred print shop.
- Packaging Matters
Packaging is a key element of a solid brand image. It does not matter that people will not parade their purchases on the street. You still need to craft your packaging materials with attention to all the details: materials, colours, design, placement of logo and scannable elements (QR code). The packaging is the first contact the client makes with your product. Their look and quality will play a huge role in how they perceive the product overall.