Offline approaches can go hand-in-hand with digital-based influencer marketing strategies. Find out how.
Ready for this statistic? According to a recent study, it’s estimated the average person will spend 5.3 years interfacing with social media over the course of their lifetime. 5.3 years! When you consider that sleep accounts for about 35% of your life (or 28 years with your head on the pillow for the average woman born in 1990), that number takes on a whole new meaning.
This stat supports why brand builders are all about social media marketing strategies these days. Ad spends are forecasted to be in the $36 billion range in 2017, and there seems to be no stopping the steam engine that is the social media universe. But social media isn’t the only game in town. If you’re looking to boost brand awareness quickly and affordably, there are several offline strategies that can help spotlight your business while creating new, loyal clients in no time.
1. Create local partnerships
While today’s e-commerce is huge, and ever-growing, think about how often you still buy local. 71% of cars bought today are still purchased in-person at a dealership (although some heavy online research usually happens first), and 95% of people still shop for groceries and sundries exclusively in-person. If you’re looking to boost your brand, consider a partnership with a local company that still sees a lot of foot traffic and direct-to-consumer touchpoints. Work closely with the team on the ground, and ensure their employees are strong experts for your brand as well. The impact on your brand’s image will certainly be positive with the support of a third party partner.
2. Plan promotional giveaways
People love free stuff. While lean companies might shy away from promotions, the direct impact to your bottom line of a well-planned promotional marketing campaign may be bigger than you think. Partner with a reputable promotional goods company and order a wide variety of items – calendars, Koozies, notebooks, hats – anything that will help you put something branded into the hands of your customers and potential clients.
The psychological phenomenon that results when a customer sees your brand name every day is real, and people will subconsciously lean toward your brand out of familiarity, especially if it’s SWAG they use often.
3. Attend industry events
Do you consider trade shows too old-fashioned in today’s e-everything world? Consider this: 112,298 people attended CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas last year; 115,612 people showed up to the IMTS (International Manufacturing Technology Show) and nearly 90,000 attended the Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market in July of 2016.
These numbers point to the huge opportunity available to market your brand to a significant audience – potentially hundreds of thousands – over the course of a year. Hands-on experience with your business can create viral word-of-mouth advertising thanks to show attendees.
4. Network like social media doesn’t exist
Networking is critical to lock down, but it’s a marketing tactic easily overlooked. People not only statistically trust other people when it comes to reviewing and endorsing products, they actually prefer working with others when it involves something truly important. Your employees can be your strongest brand advocates as they interact with your brand on a daily basis. Educate them well and even incentivize them to embody the brand with potential consumers. Looking a client in the eye, and connecting on a personal level is still extremely valuable. Solidify your business networking skills to create both lasting industry relationships, and a more connected customer base.
5. Get personal
Nothing endears potential customers more than a personal touch. An honest-to-goodness birthday card, thank you note, or simple token of your appreciation delivered via mail or in person goes a long way towards indirectly strengthening your brand. It’s also inexpensive and easy to manage. Use information gathered from trade shows or business visits to create a database and begin the one-to-one communication. Your customers and prospects will truly appreciate the gesture and then think positively about your brand as a result.
Building a brand and heightening awareness of your business requires a multi-angle approach. Social media and online strategies must, without question, be a big part of your strategic plan. But offline activities are the glue that ties together the concept of brand management. For more information about building and strengthening your brand, contact Experticity today.