Online + Offline tools to promote your business

This article talks about how you can manage real-world promotion for a business all from your computer. It also talks about augmented reality and about how some advertising can be a combination of ‘real’ and digital elements.

How to Promote Your Business Combining Offline, Online
Using the web to promote your business is a great way to quickly and effectively reach thousands of people. It lets you connect to people around the entire planet cheaply and easily from the comfort of your home, and generally creates promotional opportunities where they just wouldn’t have existed before.

But even today when technology is so ubiquitous and the web is such a crucial part of our lives, people still tend to take more notice of promotions that are offline. Think about it – if you see an advert online versus one on the television, which are you likely to pay more attention to? And if you see an advert in a magazine, how much more closely are you likely to inspect it than you would if you saw that same advert on a website?

Advertising in ‘the real world’ is generally more expensive and more difficult, but it also tends to have a more profound impact as a result. But what if you could advertise your products offline just as easily as you promote them online? What if you could go online and use internet tools in order to market your work offline without leaving your seat?

Well the good news is that this is actually perfectly possible. Read on to discover how you can take your marketing into the real world from where you’re sitting using the wonders of the web.

Promotional Products
Promotional products are one ‘real world’ form of marketing that you can create on a computer. Using a number of different sites on the web, it’s easy to select a number of products and have your branding printed across them and it’s then possible to sell these items directly from this website. You don’t need to worry about delivery or about designing the products yourself: all you need to do is to choose the one you want to customize and then direct your customers there. As a result, you’ll not only be able to sell some products for a profit, but you’ll also be able to get your logo out into the real world to be seen by potentially thousands of people.

Fliers and Leaflets
You can also promote your business through printed materials in a similar way. Thanks to sites like Vista Print which print business cards and leaflets, and LuLu that allow you to self-publish entire booklets, you can create professional-quality materials without having to invest in your own printing press or learn publishing.

At the same time you will find that there are many companies out there willing to handle even more of this process for you and that will design you your own logo and fonts, print out leaflets and then post them through doors or hand them out in specific areas. All you need to do is explain what it is that you want done, and the rest is handled for you.

AR Codes
4AR stands for ‘Augmented Reality’ and is a way that you can link your online promotional efforts with your ‘real world’ materials. This works by allowing users to ‘scan’ your codes with an app in their phone in order to be linked directly to your website/video/checkout. For instance then, say you have posters hanging at a train station, including an AR code will then allow passers-by to scan in those posters in order to automatically open your website on their phone.

This is a fantastic way to get more from your advertising as it allows you to convey much more detailed information than you possibly could with just a single poster, and you’ll add an interactive element to your advertising that makes it more engaging for people who might otherwise have just walked past. At the same time though, because it’s out there in the ‘real world’ it will be easier for your images to grab attention and you’ll find that your message gets seen by a much wider audience. This way you get to benefit from the best of both worlds – the visibility and authority of a real world advert but with the flexibility and interactivity of online advertising.

It’s time to stop thinking about marketing as either online or offline. The very best marketing should be both

About the Author:
Nancy Baker who is a freelance blogger, has authored this post. She writes for Concept Plus, a company dealing in promotional products. She enjoys her job and often indulges in photography and gardening during her leisure time. You can also follow her on Twitter @Nancy Baker.

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