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By developing your networking skills, you can continue to expand your business circle, which provides more resources and opportunities. Here’s how to grow your circle.

While natural leaders do exist, it is also possible to learn leadership skills, put them into practice and grow your leadership capabilities.

So, how can you kick off your September marketing? Here are seven super September marketing ideas for you to jump start your marketing this month and head into the season.

Ask any small business owner and they’ll say that Labor Day sales are only as good as Labor Day marketing. But if you haven’t started yet, it’s still not too late!

When businesses fail to market to existing customers—and only focus on bringing in new ones—they leave money on the table, and can end up losing loyal customers.

Needless to say, customer service is an incredibly important aspect of any business model. So, here are five ways your business can have better customer service.

The downside of business swag? You have to invest a bit of money to create your own. The upside? You create walking billboards everywhere customers wear or use the items.

If a management team drives vision for a business, and marketing brings clients into the business, then employees are those who actually move the business forward.

What exactly is responsive website design, and why does it matter for your business? Let’s dive into a few reasons why your business website should be responsive.

As we approach the back-to-school season, you should have a plan in place to market to consumers in order to attract them to buy your product or service.

If you’re not sure where to start with your competition, don’t worry. We’ve compiled a list of five ways, to get you started.

A vision statement is a vital part of any successful small business, so today we explore how to craft an effective vision statement to move the business forward.

If you want your sales to stay successful after Independence Day, then you’re going to need a second strategy to implement once the day comes to an end.

With all of the excitement surrounding the Fourth of July, consumers are searching for sales. How does your business join in? Here are a few marketing reminders.

When you know how to best represent your brand, you have the flexibility to share that brand with others, while representing the company in a professional light.

3 Tips for Maximizing Results with Print + Email

Combine direct mail with email is a great way to increase response rates. Here are three ways to manage the timing to turbocharge your results.

1. Use email to follow-up to nudge response.
Email makes a great reminder for your direct mail pieces. Drop your postcard or letter. Then, while the piece is still fresh in people’s minds, use email to nudge them to respond. When one manufacturer wanted to invite customers to an in-house seminar, for example, it paired a dimensional mailer with two follow-up emails. The company received an 18% overall response rate.

2. Use mail tracking to optimize email timing.
Using mail tracking services, you can determine when the mail piece actually arrives at the recipient’s home or office, then time your email to arrive at the time that testing has determined will be most effective.

One B2B marketer split its email blast into two groups and conducted an A/B test. The first blast arrived on a predetermined day regardless of when the mail piece actually arrived. In the second blast, the mail drops were tracked and the email was timed to arrive exactly one day later. The timed follow-ups showed a 4.7% lift in response.

3. Send email first to save on postage costs.
Did you know that you can optimize your postal costs by sending an email first? Anyone who responds to the email blast can be removed from the direct mail list. This saves you print and postage.

In one alumni campaign, a university sent personalized emails based on area of study and graduation/reunion year. It followed up with a direct mailer personalized with the same information, but only to people who had not responded to the email. Not only did the university save money on print and postage, but it achieved an 8.5% response rate.

Email makes a terrific partner to direct mail campaigns, whether sent in advance of the mailing or as a follow-up. Looking for ideas for making the ideal one-two punch? Give us a call.

Here are five key components for how to make a strategic video script and create a successful marketing video which will help boost lead generation and grow your business.

5-Point Checklist for Top-Notch Folds

First impressions matter. When a recipient reaches into his or her mailbox or picks up a piece of marketing collateral, what impression are they getting from your company? The quality of the folds you use is one of those details that matters more than you might think. Here is a five-point checklist to make sure your piece looks its best.

1. Create a mock-up.
Before finalizing the design, create a mock-up to make sure everything looks right. For example, check that folds don't run awkwardly through visual elements and that everything lines up correctly. You don't want to be making last-minute corrections because something got missed.

2. Double-check the folding sequence.
When the piece is run through the folding machine, the folding sequence is often different from how the panels appear on the printed sheet. Make sure that the panels are in the correct order even after the piece gets folded.

3. Allow for creep.
If you are doing multiple folds, adjust for creep. Especially with thicker paper, every time the sheet is folded, it moves over a little each time. If you are doing roll folds, each consecutive panel must be slightly narrower.

4. Don't assume it's machine foldable.
Don't assume that every piece is machine foldable. With more complex constructions, pieces may need to be hand folded. You don't want to be redesigning the piece right before the deadline to avoid an unexpected expense.

5. Consider the paper grain.
Ensure that the folds go with the grain of the paper, not against it. This will minimize the potential for cracking across those fold lines. If you have heavy ink coverage, you may want to pre-score the folds to keep them crisp.

These are five simple steps that can make for a piece that stands out in its professionalism and stays within the budget. Before creating any complex folds, talk to us first!

Whether you choose to take photos with a quality camera or a simple smartphone, there are specific ways to ensure pictures turn out clean, crisp and professional.

In today’s world, if a business is not on social media, it can easily fall by the wayside as technology advances. However, being on social media is simply not enough.

We put together a quick list of our favorite summer marketing ideas to help you get ready for the hot sales season coming up. Here’s how to prepare for summer marketing.

5 Channels = 5 Ways to Help You Grow

Want to grow your business? Here are five marketing ideas to build your business.

1. Mail it! Not only is the power of direct mail stronger than ever, but it gets around many of the downsides of electronic marketing. It doesn't require opt-in. It doesn't get caught by spam filters. It doesn't get automatically directed into folders with other marketing emails where it will never be seen.

2. Offer a webinar. Be the expert in your subject area by offering webinars. Be the one your customers trust. If you don't feel qualified, don't worry. As long as you know more about the subject than your attendees, you have something to offer. Even a 30-second webinar will do the trick.

3. Write a letter. How many people take the time to write letters anymore? Talk to your customers as you would to a friend. No sales talk! Brag about recent success stories. Talk about your company's community and charitable involvement. Offer ideas that are relevant to them. You don't see this often, and it's one reason you should do it.

4. Let the sidewalk do the talking. It's easy to focus on broadening your reach through direct mail and email and forget about the power of reaching people right in front of you. If you have a storefront, use sidewalk displays, window clings, banners, and other forms of advertising to reach the people walking right by your door.

5. Host an event. Like webinars, in-house events set you up as a thought leader. Offer an educational seminar. Give a behind-the-scenes tour. Bring in an expert speaker. Attendees will remember you, and if they like you, so much the better. People want to do business with people they like.

These are five different channels, each offering something unique to help you build your business. The more ways you can interact with your target audience, the more engaged your customers will be. So pick a channel and use it - or better yet, use them all.

Should your business have a mobile app? Today we dive in and explore some of the reasoning behind having—or not having—a mobile app for a small business.

Is Social Media Print’s New Best Friend?

While print and social media may compete for your marketing dollars, they don’t have to compete for your customers. In fact, using them together can make your marketing more effective. Let’s look at five ways print and social media can work together.

1. Print drives traffic to social media.

How do you drive traffic to your social media sites? Often, it’s with print. Whether it is through direct mail, store signage, or company invoices, print is often your customer’s first exposure to your social media presence.

2. More channels help you reach more people.

Even in today’s tech-driven world, not everyone uses social media or uses it on a regular basis. Use print to ensure that you are reaching the largest swath of your audience as possible. As the old adage goes, “Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket.”

3. Say it again . . . and again.

Consistently, studies show that reinforcing your message through multiple channels increases brand awareness, heightens engagement, and boosts response rates. The combination of print and social media, along with other traditional and digital media, is more effective than any single channel alone.

4. Boost credibility.

Survey after survey shows that consumers still trust print more than they trust online media. A survey conducted by Ball State University’s Center for Media Design in coordination with ExactTarget found that even Millennials are more likely to be influenced to make purchase decisions based on communications they receive by email and direct mail rather than through social media advertising.

5. Print has staying power.

Your message on social media might stay for a few hours, then gets buried under the avalanche of other messaging. Print has staying power. Your direct mail piece might live on someone’s desk or bulletin board for weeks or months.

Using print and social media isn’t an “either or” proposition. Understanding when and where to use each channel is the key to getting the best results.

Vehicle branding is an exceptional form of advertising medium with few downsides. For just one single startup cost, your vehicle can expose a multitude of people to the business every single day.

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