5 Printed Products your Organization Needs and Why

Written by: Patrick Cox

printed productsWe’ve all felt the pressure to focus most of our attention on our digital presence, print has taken second fiddle among many marketing campaigns and can “appear” less cost effective with so many “Free “resources. Nothing could be more wrong; printed marketing collateral is an essential part of any strong marketing campaign and when wielded correctly, it will deliver in more ways than one.

The trick with all marketing is brand visibility and recognition, and although your company gets a lot of attention online, it is easy to get lost in the overcrowded digital world. Printed marketing material puts your brand in the hands of your clients and that can be the one thing that ensures your standing out above everyone else.

1)  The Brand Identity Package

One of the most important components of your printed business arsenal is your Brand Identity Package (BIP). This includes:

  • Business cards
  • Letterhead
  • Envelopes
  • Pads
  • Labels

Your BIP is how you introduce yourself, making a positive impact on your clients and future customers. It’s vital you invest in a quality designer when creating your identity package; whether classy, timeless or edgy this is a key part of your brands image. Additionally, your BIP is a vital communication tool used to reach other businesses, your clients, and prospects. After all, if they can’t find you, they can’t do business with you. Show them you mean business and hand them the tools they need to stay in contact.

2)  The Pocket Folder

Pocket folders are powerful branding tools and exceptionally useful for pulling all your marketing materials together in one convenient-to-carry package. These marketing devices lend a professional image to your brand and help customers sift through the natural information flow involved with sales, whether you’re selling B2B or B2C, big ticket items or smaller products and services.

Personally, I feel these are vital to any sales rep as they provide a great leave behind for your prospects. Be sure to include a few of the following based on your products and services:

  • Business card
  • Stepped down sell sheets
  • Cover letter
  • Testimonials
  • Flyers
  • Booklets
  • Posters
  • Notepads
  • Brochures
  • USB flash drives
  • Newsletters and News clippings
  • Calendars, bookmarks, and magnets
  • DVD/CD Rom placed on left side pocket will add a unique opportunity to show off your services via visual presentation, sample of your software, or even a handy e-book that will highlight your expertise.

Branded pocket folders will reinforce your pitch while providing your prospects with something tangible they can take with them. You don’t have to fill it with everything, but be smart and mix it up to see what works best for your business.

Another great feature when it comes to pocket folders is the flexibility you have with the shape, size, theme and motif. Our designers will create something that will truly standout above your competition, since you have the option to design them from scratch. That means if you want your folder to look like a cat, a cell phone or even a pair of cheetah spot galoshes, we can do it.

3)  Referral Cards

In today’s business climate, referral marketing has become one of the most successful ways to grow your business. This word-of-mouth tactic is practiced in every city of every state in the country, thanks to the countless business networking events being attended every day.

84% of B2B decision makers start the buying process off with a referral

Your customers are your best sales people. How are you rewarding them for it? A strong customer referral program will provide you an opportunity to not only make your current clientele happier, but offer their friends and colleagues a chance to try you out at a discounted rate.

Referral cards are much like business cards, however you can hand them out to your clients and they can hand them out at functions they attend. Once you establish a relationship with the new client, you let the customer who referred them know how appreciative you are by extending them a discount as well.

It’s important to have a strong tracking plan in place, so you can reward your clients for helping you out. Also make sure you have your customer referral program outlined on your website, with all the rules and stipulations, so there are no questions later.

4)  Brochures, Rack Cards and Flyers

Whether you are promoting an event, new service or product, or simply need to share some information a high quality brochure, rack card or flyer will do the trick. These marketing necessities are an essential element for any organization.

56% of customers find print marketing to be the most trustworthy type of marketing

According to B2B Marketing:

  • Brochures help capture the attention of potential customers, especially in the case of small and emerging businesses that are on a tight budget.
  • They are more effective and pocket-friendly than product advertisements in magazines and newspapers, given the fact that prime space on print media is costly. Advertisement space is shared by several businesses competing for public attention, making it a challenge to really get noticed amongst the competition.
  • Brochures or booklets, on the other hand, can focus entirely on the business and its offerings, thereby getting the undivided attention of all potential customers who browse through them. The key, however, is to make the content both interesting and informative, supporting it with appropriate images, and including a call to action.
  • They are versatile pieces of printed information that can be used for promoting almost all types of products and services, and in different venues, right from reception desks of offices to promotional events. They are found in several formats such as menus, flyers, product guides, and newsletters, in addition to the conventional tri-fold style.
  • Brochure printing services are definitely more cost-effective, given the discounts that are usually offered with bulk printing. The cost per brochure reportedly comes down with the number of prints. Regular customers also enjoy discounted brochure printing offers.

Effective marketing campaigns are all about customer interactions. Brochures are simply just another way to interact with customers and generate leads for the sales teams to follow up. A printed brochure is tangible and easy to access, providing your prospect with something to hold when compared to content being seen on an e-mail or a website.

5)  Direct Mail

Direct mail is still the number one marketing strategy used by many successful sales companies. In fact, one of the most successful marketing campaigns is the “Bed, Bath and Beyond” 20% off coupon you receive in your mail every month.  This has not only consistently brought in new customers, but provided a brand loyalty program that customers have now come to look forward to each month.

An International Communications Research survey found that 73% of consumers actually prefer mail over other advertising methods

With direct mail, you have total control over the presentation of your message. Direct mail is a unique blend of advertising and sales. While good advertising should certainly lead to sales, direct mail allows you to present the product or service, make an offer and try to close the sale-all at once.

There are many forms of direct mail that your company could be using:

  • Postcards
  • Self-mailers
  • Newsletters
  • Lead Letters

In my next article I will go much deeper into the power of direct mail and how to run a successful direct mail campaign.

Finally, it’s important to note that to be successful you must be consistent with your tactics. You can’t just send out one mailing, make a phone call and expect people to be pounding down your door. Customers need to see and hear your message up to 7 times. 76% of small businesses say their ideal marketing strategy encompasses a combination of both print and digital communication. I often recommend a blend of direct mail, social media marketing, personal interaction and event/networking attendance to maximize your exposure and get the best return on your investment, just be sure to bring plenty of printed marketing collateral along with you to share your message and wow your prospects.


 

Patrick Cox is a business and marketing strategist for Metro Printing and Engraving in Reston, Virginia. “Metro Printing and Engraving is Your One-Stop, Print Shop!” They provide a vast array of printed and engraved communication, marketing and event collateral all in one place, so whether it is brochures for a new line of products, promotional products for your next event or trophies for the community soccer team, Metro Printing has all you need at two convenient locations, Reston and Woodbridge. You can reach Patrick at patrick@metroprintingcenter.com or visit his blog at www.thecre8iveconsultant.com.