In the old days, (say, 7 years ago), small and mid-size businesses relied on simple yet effective ways of promoting themselves and reaching the customers they wanted to reach. Some of these promotional tactics can also be accomplished online.
Here are 5 old-world marketing ideas that can be carried over to your online marketing strategy, some at a lower cost than their more traditional fore-bearers, with a new-world spin:
- Newsletters – Remember when you had to write your newsletter, get it designed, printed, and then mailed? All of that took time and effort – and expense! Today, all you have to do is produce your newsletter using an online service (such as Constant Contact or other similar services) and e-mail it. The costs are fewer and the benefits are greater – with an online newsletter you can even see who opened and read your message! (Visit our archive of e-mail marketing tips here)
- Postcards – Postcards have been a mainstay in the marketing world for a long time. Many real estate agents and other business owners still use them. Now you can go green and send out postcards by e-mail and it’s just as effective and inexpensive as it ever was.
- Guest Authoring – The old method of guest authoring was to write an article and send it to a trade magazine or print periodical. While still a viable tactic, now you can do the same thing and more often, with online publications as well. Write an article and send it to a relevant blog that accepts guest posts. No postage fees – and you can get a valuable link back to your website or blog with additional traffic.
- Networking – It’s nice to meet face-to-face with people, but realistically, everyone is busier these days and it’s harder to connect in real life (especially heading into the busy holiday season). Through social media networking sites like LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook or through forums that cater to people of a single interest you can do a lot of your networking online more efficiently and effectively. (See our post on using LinkedIn to grow your business here).
- Display advertising – Printed newspapers and telephone books are dying and along with them the popularity of print ads. But you can still engage in display advertising online. Re-direct your print advertising budget online! Choose a website that caters to the same audience you want to reach or has the same topical focus. Or go the pay-per-click route and advertise through Google.
The basic old-world marketing fundamentals are the same, but the methods have changed a bit. Is it time to update your marketing tactics to align with business 2.0 and beyond?