There’s a lot of discussion these days about small businesses obtaining greater access to capital. But what many businesses require much more than funding at this time are more clients and increased revenue. For this reason marketing must move from a temporary focus to a more consistent focus for small businesses. This has mandated a greater need for the smooth integration of online and offline marketing efforts. The following are some simple ways that this integration can take place:
Consistent Branding – Include your URL or website address on every piece of business communication. This includes letterhead, business cards, post cards, Yellow Pages, ads, flyers and handouts. Image Continuity – Try to use the same format, imagery and colors on your promotional material which is used on your web site. This promotes greater consistency, higher top-of-the-mind awareness and re-enforces your branding message. Use of Spaced Repetition – Be sure to promote the same message in your off-line material as on your web site. There’s nothing worse than offering a discount in the store or on a mailer but not showing this same discount on your web site. On-line customers may feel cheated or less important if we don’t include them in the program. Coordinated Timing – It is also important to roll-out promotional campaigns simultaneously. Planning on a target launch date for your campaign and ensure that all preparations are made by this date on both fronts (on and off-line). Professional Web Presence – It is absolutely critical that your on-line image matches your off-line (or brick and mortar) image. If your retail or office location looks professional, organized and reflects your business philosophy it is just as important that your web site does also. This means you may want to make the investment in professional web development services. Meeting the above criteria in the development and launching of any marketing efforts will make all the difference in the world when it comes to creating viable response.