Surely everyone knows about brand building right? Wrong. Whilst we expect a business to be remembered for its excellent customer service (and so it should!), it can often be quite difficult to commit that business name to memory if they do not have a strong brand that you can familiarise yourself with.
Recognition is the key. You see something enough times you are going to store that memory – whether you realise it or not – and through having that recognition with that brand you subconsciously build up a trust and feel confident to part with your money for the products of services of that particular business. It really is that simple.
Small businesses have a great advantage in their marketing strategies in that they have a core geographic area that they can focus attention on. Consumers are always happy to purchase from local trades – it keeps the cog of the local economy turning and perhaps they feel they’ve done their bit to help avoid a complete corporate take-over altogether!
Couple this information with the fact that not everybody responds well to online marketing – the sometimes intruding pop-ups, the incessant requests or unwanted emails – it can lead small businesses to pair their online efforts with print marketing, or more importantly environmentally friendly printing. There is absolutely no denying that businesses should have an online presence or the fact that the mass consumer will source their products and services online, but for the task of building a brand, printed materials can really come in handy. And here’s why:
With a uniformed brand, every correspondence, marketing and sales communication will continue to remind consumers of who you are – your logo, colour scheme/graphics and slogan – and most importantly it conveys the message, or the promise of your value. Think of a company uniform, perhaps a printed t-shirt that has the business logo, its promise and the employee name.
Environmentally friendly printing on all kinds of substrates (brochures, postcards, posters, t-shirts, pens, mouse mats, calendars, mugs…..the list goes on) provides a versatile nonintrusive marketing strategy and can make the consumer feel they have more control as they do not feel pressed to deal with the information you provide as soon as it is dropped through the letter box – the consumer can choose if and when they decide to read your marketing document, and indeed choose if they want to keep it for future reference.
There are various ways of distributing traditional printed marketing materials – direct mail, personal handouts, and displays at relevant local locations (doctor’s surgery, library, cafe etc) or drops with local papers or magazines. There is also poster and banner advertising, press releases, free stationary give-aways that can further enhance your efforts of exposure and get your name out there.
Building a brand is no over-night task; it takes a lot of time, diligence and imagination. The ability to think outside of the box and stand out from your competitors is a major factor in the success of branding, but with knowledgeable and efficient use of both internet and print marketing you can slowly but surely climb the ladder of recognition and build a loyal client-base.
Claire works with Circle Leaflet Printing and has been in environmentally friendly printing for four years and loves the fact that no two days are ever the same. She has a keen eye for design and branding and likes bringing ideas to life through print.