Archive for April, 2013

Tough economic times need proactive marketing

The economy is bouncing back, but marketing budgets are still tight.

Are you tempted to slash your print marketing budget to save a few dollars? If so, you are likely to be counterproductive.


Difficult economic times are about survival. The more visible your company is, the more confident your customers and prospects will be that you are the company to trust. When you stop marketing, you create uncertainty about the strength of your business. You also open the door for your best customers to become your competitor’s best prospects.


When printing and mailing in any economic environment, here are three tips that will help you get the most out of your marketing dollars:


1. Craft your message from a position of strength. When times are tough, people don’t stop buying. They just become more selective. Establish yourself as a strategic business partner who offers the most relevant products at the greatest value based on quality and performance. Add credibility to your message with customer testimonials and other sources of validation, such as certifications and awards.


2. Exploit the weaknesses of the competition. Your best marketing campaign is worthless if the competitor down the street is closing the sale. Design print materials to persuade prospects not only to buy the product or service you’re offering, but to buy it from you. Determine what your competitors are doing (or not doing) that can help you position your company, product, or offer more favorably.


3. Give prospects a reason to buy now. No matter how magical your marketing message is, fewer people tend to respond when budgets are tight. Spur prospects to action with a limited time offer, such as a discount or complimentary service. Fear is a part of the buying decision. Guarantees are an effective way to ease buyer doubt.


Companies with aggressive marketing, along with superior products and value, prevail in times of both prosperity and recession, while those with timid marketing, inferior products, and exaggerated marketing claims fail. Whether it’s branding, prospecting, or customer retention, invest in smart marketing and enjoy a vastly stronger market presence as the economy bounces back.

Nice use of QR Codes by Canadian Company

I happened to be in to my neighborhood Home Hardware and there sitting on the checkout counter was a pad of paper with tear-off slips with a big QR code on them. See below.

HardwareScanUpon scanning the code I landed on a nicely organized Landing Page welcoming me to the Daily Gift Card Giveaway contest the hardware chain was having for the month of March.

What worked perfectly about this campaign was that the Welcome Page and subsequent pages were mobile friendly, scaled to fit a smaller tablet or smartphone screen. After signing up to the contest. I immediately received an acknowledging email, thanking me for participating in the contest. The site also allowed me to browse sale items the chain had on sale this month.. Too often marketers do not give enough thought to where and on what device the person scanning the code will be viewing the campaign. How many times have we all seen a full desk top sized web site scrunched down to a smartphone sized window. Too much work for me to scroll, pinch or zoom to read the message and I simply log off.

Nice job Home Hardware!!

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