Despite the growing popularity of digital marketing, print marketing is still relevant. No, you don’t need to scrap your digital marketing campaign and take a strictly-print marketing route.
For most small businesses, digital and print marketing go hand-in-hand. In fact, print marketing can complement a local SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and reinforce the marketing message.
Print marketing materials have a longer shelf life, work as attention-grabbers, and enable you to promote your brand and offerings in a targeted manner.
A small business can use print marketing materials in many ways such as:
- Hand out business cards and customer loyalty cards
- Send holiday greetings or notes on special occasions to existing and prospective customers
- Distribute flyers at local bus stops to reach out to working professionals
- Distribute leaflets with newspapers in a locality to target homeowners
- Distribute brochures at a local networking event to get more business
- Provider customers with a detailed product catalog and price sheet
- Send monthly/quarterly newsletters to foster established relationships
- Use posters to announce new arrivals, weekly/seasonal discounts, etc.
- Custom presentation folders to make an enduring impression
Thankfully, printing promotional material is more affordable than ever. If you are keen to make print marketing a part of your small business marketing plan, here’s what you should know about printing marketing materials.
When Should You Print Marketing Materials In-House?
Many small businesses print flyers, posters, postcards, newsletters, brochures, presentations, etc. in-house. You, too, can invest in a color inkjet printer, designed to print visually-rich documents, graphics and images.
While entry-level inkjets cost under $100, small businesses should ideally opt for more expensive inkjet printers that use high-yield ink cartridges to keep printing costs under control and have multi-color ink systems for better print quality.
An inkjet printer costing around $300-$400 can deliver photo-lab quality prints. The money spent on buying a better printer can be saved in printing costs in the long run.
In-house printing of small business marketing material makes sense if you aren’t printing anything in bulk or need to frequently change/update the content.
For example, if you want to place five eye-catching letter-size posters at strategic places to announce new arrivals or discounts, it’s a good idea to print them in-house.
The total cost (of paper and ink) in this case is likely to be less than the money you’d pay if these posters are printed by a dedicated printing company. To further reduce the cost of printing marketing materials, small business owners should know how to save money on printer cartridges and paper.
In-house printing is convenient too – you don’t have to wait for the prints to arrive and it is possible to alter the content or update the marketing material any time. You can also review test prints to check how they really look on paper. This is helpful especially when you need to experiment with different designs, slogans, fonts, etc. to figure out “what works and what doesn’t.”
When Should You Choose a Printing Company?
Choosing a dedicated printing company makes business sense when you need to print marketing material in bulk. For example, if you need to print more than 1,000 leaflets, it is more economical to outsource this print job to a dedicated printing company than printing leaflets in-house.
Small business owners should know how to choose the right printing company. You can, for instance, compare different service providers on the basis of their pricing, turnaround time, ordering process, etc. Some printing companies also provide graphic design services.
When Should You Hire a Graphic Designer?
Having an experienced graphic designer onboard can sure help create more appealing marketing material for a campaign.
But, if you’re on a tight budget and can’t afford to hire a graphic designer, consider using online tools such as Canva to quickly create posters, flyers, brochures, etc. from ready-to-use templates. Free versions of such online services will suffice the needs of most small businesses.
Print marketing is NOT dead. It’s here to stay. Millions of small businesses around the world are successfully using print marketing campaigns to generate leads, increase sales, and retain existing customers.
In most cases, small business owners need to use a combination of the two strategies discussed above for printing marketing materials. While some print jobs are best undertaken in-house, others ought to be outsourced to a third-party service provider.
Lastly, remember to be consistent (use the same design theme, logo, colors, etc. in all printed items), keep it simple (avoid putting in too many details), use appealing images from royalty-free platforms such as Pixabay and Pexels to convey the message, and provide value (useful information, tips, etc.) to your target audience for the best results.
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