How many small businesses do you know who use print to deliver marketing messages – or need print products as an essential part of their service delivery? Are you one of them? Some businesses have a well thought out plan and get expert advice before they start – but most don’t. That means there’s a much higher risk of disappointment. If you’re planning to utilise print for your business, being clear on all the key steps before you start could make a big difference to the outcome.
Seven steps to a better return on investment on your print marketing:
- Goal. What are you trying to achieve with your print project? Are you looking for new leads, more sales, to reactivate dormant customers, to introduce a new product or service?
- Target. Who is the message for? The clearer you are on exactly who you’re communicating with, the more likely you’ll craft something that resonates – and gets a response.
- Message. What do you need them to know? Write from the customers’ perspective – remember the customer is really only interested in what’s in it for them. What specifically do you want them to do – every piece should have a clear call to action. Perhaps you want them to go to your website for further information, or buy a product at your online store. Or come to your point of sale to experience a new product. Maybe you’re offering them a free gift.
- Design. Is the design and layout consistent with your brand, and presented in a way that’s enticing to your target audience? Is the message easy to consume? The headline, main benefits and call to action should stand out.
- Product. The choice of product needs to fit your audience, message, method of distribution, and budget. Sometimes a standard product is best, but in many situations using something a bit different might enhance the result. Remember, the aim of the exercise is to be noticed, and for the message to be read
- Distribution. Make sure your product choice considers this – if it’s direct mail, size and weight is important; if point of sale, consider method of display; if competing with other printed material, standing out will be vital.
- Measurement. This is the step that most businesses forget. You need to track your results accurately. How many leads/responses (and eventually sales) did you generate? What feedback did you get from your recipients? If you didn’t meet your goals, what could you improve?
It’s easy to buy print without all these steps, but every one you miss increases the risk that your print project is an expense – but not an investment.