If you’re reading this, there’s a very high likelihood that you’re doing so online. After all, the internet has become such an important part of our lives that it might be hard to think of any marketing situations which can take place in the offline space. However, if you’re thinking this, then you’re missing out on offline marketing channels for your franchise business. But what is offline marketing?
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What is offline marketing?
Simply put, offline marketing is a marketing strategy which happens outside the internet space. An offline marketing campaign is one that considers other (popular) areas of marketing that once were the traditional forms of marketing, but have evolved since the onset of the world wide web. What’s important to remember at this point is that all your branding, whether offline or online, should be consistent in terms of tone, logos, images, slogans and catchphrases. If you decide to pair your offline marketing campaign with an online one, you’re more likely to reach demographics that don’t typically engage with the online space. This can have drastic, positive effects on your franchise. So what are some of the best offline marketing strategies? Let’s take a look.
Effective offline marketing strategies
Shock with guerilla marketing
Guerilla marketing, as the name implies, refers to an approach to marketing that’s viewed as impromptu, not organised and one that’s also not really authorised. If you’re thinking about creativity, then this is one of the most sure-fire ways of getting your message across. With an element of surprise or shock, you can reach audiences in a more effective way than you’d expect. Audiences these days are looking for something fresh, new and stimulating so going the guerilla route is one option to consider.
The humble business card
Small pieces of hard paper with the usual contact information can be turned into pieces of marketing art. Placed strategically and handed out at every opportunity, your business card could just be your gateway to more clients. However, you need to consider the location where you’re leaving your cards, making sure it’s strategic, and you also need to consider its design. Steer away from the drab and boring and go for something creative. Let your imagination work for you.
Authentic photos and videos
Much like their importance in the online space, photos and videos should be authentic offline, too. Let’s face it, stock photos are boring and don’t spark much interest. Whereas some lifestyle related photos that pull at one’s emotional strings are likely to get more attention. The same is true for videos – make them personal, fun and inspiring. It doesn’t matter whether you’ll showcase them at a conference or trade event. The important part is the visual content.
Time for a giveaway
By partnering up with local events and sponsoring prizes, your brand is certainly going to get noticed. Concerts, sports events, bingo halls, parades, celebrations – all these draw the crowds in and are an extremely important opportunity to get visibility behind your brand. Prizes and sponsorships don’t need to exceed your budget either, and you can offer free or discounted services, too.
Give talks at events
Want to be seen as the “voice” in your industry? Then you definitely need to consider speaking at events. The audiences there are usually great leads that you can rely on once the event is over. It’s also a wonderful offline opportunity as you get actual exposure in your niche.
Network to make the circle bigger
If networking is not the most cost effective way of offline advertising, we don’t know what is. All it takes is getting together with like-minded individuals and sharing a cup of coffee while you talk about your franchise and how it can help others. Whether you’re sourcing new franchisees to join your business or you’re looking for new clients, consider attending local events (even if it’s just as a visitor) and talk to as many people as you can. (Don’t forget your business card!)
Send it to their postbox
Yes. We’re talking about direct mail (and certainly no, not email). For those who might find this concept new, it means sending your marketing message directly to the physical postbox of your potential clients. You should have a list of names and addresses, but that doesn’t mean that that’s where you should stop. You need to try and make your message as personal as possible, otherwise your lovely flyers might just end up in the bin.
Put it down on paper
Industry journals, magazines and trade publications are an excellent source for reaching clients who are offline. Whether at the doctor’s or dentist’s office, waiting at a hairdresser or some other location, you can give interviews which can get published in print. There’s still a large market for these types of paperback publications and you’re therefore bound to draw attention.
Although measuring the results of print advertising can be tough, it doesn’t mean that this is an insurmountable feat. You should consider this as another offline marketing strategy as you carefully select publications that your audience reads. The more exposure they have to your brand, the more likely they are to reach out to you for a product or service you offer.
Pick up the phone
Cold calls. Yup, we said it. Another offline marketing strategy. Don’t be afraid to pick up the phone and offer your services. Try to avoid standard, robotic sounding messages and scripts. On the other hand, be careful of legislation that prevents you from making cold calls, especially to people who are deemed frail or vulnerable. As an alternative to cold calling, you can also make sure you offer a brilliant customer care call service where your customers can get hold of you themselves.
Don’t miss a branding opportunity
Your vehicles are your moving billboards, but if they don’t stand out, your franchise business is unlikely to be remembered. Use this opportunity to brand your vehicles in a creative, witty way. The same is true for smaller items that you hand out such as notebooks, pens, mugs, mouse pads, calendars and more. By branding these functional items, you’ll spread more awareness about your franchise. Bus branding is another excellent opportunity to consider.
The gift of giving
If you’ve got a database of your customers and you know when their birthdays are, you might consider sending them a short greeting card to wish them well. Holiday cards do the trick just as well as do small gifts.
Put it on a billboard
They’re huge and overbearing and they’re found at the side of busy roads where you get lots of eyeballs looking at your message. Billboards. These are great offline marketing tools because so many people see them. However, they need to be executed effectively because you’ve only got seconds to showcase your brand, offer and call to action.
Ready to try offline marketing but you’re unsure of where to begin? Don’t worry! The marketing experts at Franchise Fame can help!
And as a free gift, we’re offering you a FREE downloadable pdf with other great ideas for offline marketing strategies!