March 16, 2021 | By Rebecca Harding
Traditional marketing methods still make an impact on your bottom line.
We are all excited about digital marketing and its proven effectiveness in terms of reach and the targeting of prospects. But we shouldn’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. Traditional marketing tactics still have an important place in our marketing strategies, either complementing and working alongside our digital strategy, or by offering us a stand alone approach.
The fact is that the more times a client comes into contact with our business, the more likely they are to remember our brand and feel comfortable enough to buy from us.
Contacts and clients don’t just look at their mobile phones or computers all day for digital messages. They are individuals who experience many different situations and sources of information throughout their normal week. The more opportunities they have to see us, and the more contexts they see us within, the more familiar we become. Each time they see us, our brand is reinforced in their mind.
This means that are many other places for us to promote ourselves apart from digital channels. So, how do we widen our impact, and what sort of actions are we talking about?
Here are our top tips for traditional marketing:
Although many events have now turned into webinars, they are still effective in terms of demonstrating what your business does and establishing your brand with clients and prospects. People buy from people that they like and know.
Being the speaker establishes you as an authority and, as you will have seen at any conference, the audience clamour to speak to the person on the stage. That authority will give you the opportunity to make contacts whether you were online or not. It’s all about the follow-up.
There are always lots of opportunities for sponsorship. The trick is to identify the ones that are effective for your brand and reach the right people. Think about where your customers are. Where are they spending their time?
Digital marketing is only as effective as your contacts list. Your staff, from your receptionist to IT, will have a huge network. Use your staff to establish new contacts and bring in new clients. Make sure that the incentive you offer staff is a real reward and one worth making the effort for.
Sell more to existing clients
Digital marketing encourages us to constantly chase after new clients. The fact is it is much easier to sell more to existing clients. Have you got new products that you can encourage current clients to buy? Ring clients to see how they are and make suggestions about how you can help.
Ask for referrals
Don’t be afraid to ask long term clients and other business contacts for new business referrals. They will often be your best advocates and contacts are more likely to speak to you if they have had a personal introduction from someone they know.
Work with a complementary business, brand or product. By promoting each other you can successfully extend your networks.
Media and PR
Get to know the journalists on relevant publications eg. news, business, trade, local or websites. Journalists appreciate it when they have someone they can turn to for help if they don’t understand certain issues affecting their readership.
How could you help a journalist? How could you advise their readership? Once they get to know you, they will be happy to call you for help, quote you in articles or ask you to write something for them.
Pricing deals and Incentives
Pricing deals and incentives are still popular. Don’t forget to use these to encourage new sales or more sales from current clients. They’re good way to reward existing clients for their loyalty.
This might seem passé, but with the dramatic drop in the volume of direct mail in favour of email marketing, there is an opportunity here to make an impact by doing something original and tactile. For small groups of contacts a personally signed letter could prove impressive and get a good response.
Done well, marketing is a cohesive operation. Planned well, it can maximise the use of your resources and time. If you are producing ideas and material for content on your digital platforms then make sure you drive it through these traditional avenues as well. Otherwise, simply make sure you make use of all these normal channels when you come up with ideas.
The opportunities open to you are only restricted by your own imagination. So grab a pen (or a tablet) and get that imagination working.
About the author
Rebecca Harding is founder of communications, marketing and business development consultancy, Saltwhistle. She is Chairman of the Society of Women Writers and Journalist as well as an author.
Her clients range from multi-nationals to SMEs eg Deloittes, WPP.
They benefit from partner/executive advisory services, marketing, pitching and business development, writing and communications solutions.
Previously, Rebecca was responsible for PR for Andersen, working across Europe, the Middle East, India and Africa. She held marketing roles within accountancy and the oil industry, working with BP and Shell.
She has been quoted and published widely in the media. She appears regularly on a BBC radio chat show, is a falconer, a qualified yacht skipper and trained as a game ranger in the Kruger.