If you’re following best practices when doing Internet marketing, you’re probably amazed at how easy it is to generate leads and close sales. Although it may be hard to believe, there is something even better than inbound marketing, and that’s combining inbound marketing with outbound marketing.
While Internet marketing works well, and offline marketing still works, too, you get the best results by integrating the two. Think of it as a way of getting the best of both worlds.
The challenge is to get the two forms of marketing to work in harmony, rather than independently or at cross-purposes.
The 2 Strategies
The first strategy is to use QR Codes and Analytics.
The second strategy is to use social media.
Strategy #1: Connect with QR Codes and Analytics
- How to Use QR Codes.
You can’t afford to ignore the impact of mobile technology when using integrated marketing because people who use Smartphones and tablets to shop from a huge section of your market.
One of the best ways to gain traction with mobile technology is through the use of QR Codes. A QR code is a two-dimensional barcode. When someone uses their Smartphone to scan your QR code, they are then redirected to a website, video, or text message, where you can describe the benefits of your products.
The QR codes on merchandise in stores can provide much more product information than you can squeeze in on the back of a box.
- How to use Analytics
As a marketer, you’ve already realized how good the Internet is at in measuring results. There has never been a better time in the history of marketing for metrics. Tracking apps give you all the information you need to know at a glance about how your campaigns are doing through an assortment of graphs. By comparison, an offline tactic like a classified ad appears somewhat vague. While you might know the circulation of the newspaper, you don’t know how many people see your advertising. The way to link your print advertising with your website is through the use of custom landing pages to target your ideal audience for a specific offer:
A Kissmetrics article about offline marketing tracking explains how this works: “For example, if you have a retail store that sells outdoor goods for camping, hiking, and canyoneering, and you place an ad in a camping magazine, the custom landing page could be focused mainly on your camping goods (instead of everything else), which could lead to more conversions.”
Yet another way to track through URLs is to redirect domains. Simply create a new domain to redirect people to a custom landing page that is on your website.
Strategy #2: Connect with Social Media
There are a number of ways that you can connect social media with offline marketing. Here are three effective tactics.
- First: connect through social media advertising.
- Second: connect through social media profiles.
- Third: connect through social media research.
Let’s take a look at each one:
- Social Media Advertising.
When you exhibit at a tradeshow, one way to attract traffic to your booth is just showing up to benefit from walk-by traffic. You can capture even more attention from this walk-by traffic by paying more for a good location for your booth, using captivating posters and banners, and offering some high-value promotional giveaways.
While these are all good strategies, you can attract even more traffic by promoting your presence at the trade show on social media. Your social media ads should lead visitors to your corporate blog, where you have a post about your booth at the trade show. The purpose of the post is to educate people about who you are, how you can help them, and how they will benefit by visiting your booth. You can also add a special offer for those who mention that they found your booth through social media. This will be a way of tracking your response rate to the social media-blog post campaign.
- Social Media Profiles.
When handing out collateral marketing materials—business cards, brochures, etc—add your social media URL as a way for people to stay in touch by following you on your social media profiles. Don’t simply use the logos of Social Media to indicate you have a presence there; use your custom URL as a specific way to tell people how to connect with you on your profile.
- Social Media Research.
If you are still using outreach methods like cold calling or buying leads, you can use social media to research customers. By understanding a little about their background and interests, your sales calls will be more successful because your sales team will have a better idea how to build rapport with prospects.
Old School vs New School
It’s tempting to pick sides. Is direct mail better than email-marketing? Will talking to salesperson increase conversions or is or is it more effective to use a sales letter written by a top copywriter? Is outdoor advertising better than creating a YouTube channel? The answer to these questions depends on the marketing expert you ask. Equally compelling arguments can be made for both offline and online advertising; however, integrated marketing is about using everything that works, as well as benefiting from the synergy of connecting both worlds.