6 Physical Marketing Ideas to Incorporate Into Your 2017 Strategies 67

6 Physical Marketing Ideas to Incorporate Into Your 2017 Strategies

The following article is a guest post.

Today there are so many avenues to have your business name promoted, but where do you start?

There’s an infinite array of sites, blogs and media forums where you can advertise your company to a large audience at relatively little cost. Yet the more we are overwhelmed by these digital advertisements, the less we take in.

Humans are fundamentally still drawn to the objects in front of us, we trust what we see in a physical form because it is perceived as more ‘real’ to us. It connects better to our spatial memory, emotional processing and creates a connection between us and the brand.

Choosing promotional items carefully.

A clever marketing campaign is a lot more than just handing out customers a pen with your logo on it.

Find a company with promotional items that are specifically tailored to suit the recipient, to get the most from your investment.

There are literally tens of thousands of items to choose from, so choose quality products that reflect your business type and clientele. Cleverly chosen products ensure your brand will be appreciated, remembered and shared for many years.

Logos.

Your company logo is the visual representation of your company.

It should reflect your image, your clientele, appeal to your senses and be easily recognised. Putting time and effort into your company logo and/or slogan is imperative at the start of your business. It’s harder to change your image once a reputation and rapport has been established.

Direct Advertising.

Physical reinforcements of your company such as business cards, banners, billboards, flyers and brochures are an important aspect of your advertising.

Your message should be clear and concise, whilst the delivery is warm and inviting.

You’re approaching not only existing customers but taking a huge leap to acquiring new customers who weren’t seeking your services, so you have to be creative in your attempt to win them over.

Labels.

Utilise any avenue available to get your business name and logo out there.

Well designed, high quality labelled products, correspondence and anything else you come in contact with, spreads your name and exudes professionalism.

It reinforces the legitimacy of your company and places a reminder of who you are directly into your client’s hands, all for a very small cost.

Gift giving.

Giving promotional items to clients and staff is important on two fronts.

One, it creates a positive relationship between yourself and the client. Gift giving creates a sense of gratefulness and establishes a bond however innocuous.

Two, it is a physical reminder of your business that they will utilise and be reminded of constantly. Think about what your clients are most likely to use frequently to get the best advertising for your money.

You can also donate branded items to local fundraising events, or support community programs. This not only establishes trust and respect, it also gets your brand name out amongst those most likely to utilise it, and forms lasting relationships.

Incidental Advertising.

There are many ways to round up more customers outside a traditional marketing frame. Think about how you can promote your business name through staff presents, packaging, staff apparel or painting advertising on your car.

You can also use your own knowledge and enthusiasm to directly market your business by hiring a booth in a trade show or holding a business workshop. Immerse yourself in to your brand and show you’re proud of the company, you are your greatest marketing tool.

Creating publicity through holding competitions, selling your service on sites like groupon, or having business coupons and rewards programs, can also be great advertising if executed well.

Utilising the many dimensions of marketing options we have available to us today, you can build up your business to be much more than a name. You can create a trusted brand that people remember and come back to.

With the right tools you will solidify your business, and warm your way into your customers hearts.

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The Five Elements of Flawless Customer Experience 6

The Five Elements of Flawless Customer Experience

Providing a flawless customer experience is the ultimate goal for any business.

There’s a lot that goes into creating a customer experience that keeps your clients coming back for more. In fact, there’s so much involved that it can almost seem overwhelming.

However, providing a flawless customer experience becomes much easier when you approach the task through these five distinct elements:

Time
Understanding
Ownership of Emotions
The Unexpected
Follow-Through

Time

When it comes to your customers’ satisfaction, time is essential. Think of how a great experience at a new restaurant quickly sours if you’re left waiting for your food to arrive. Think of how your excitement over a great department store sale turns into frustration as you stand in line for what seems like hours.

Time is your most valuable resource and it is up to you to make sure you’re using your customers’ time wisely.

This is why restaurants have comfortable waiting areas with drinks and appetizers, or why airports have lounges with restaurants, shops, and even bars.

If your customers are being forced to wait for a service, make them feel as if their time spent is not wasted. The more positive drivers you offer customers, the less likely they are to grow dissatisfied with their experience.

Think of how you can implement this in your own business. Are there places where you can help fill customers’ time? Are there places where technology can be used to cut down on the time it takes to complete a task? Remember, it’s the customers’ time that should be valued, not your own.

Understanding

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You must understand what your customers want, when they want it, and how.

While this may seem daunting, getting a better understanding of your customers doesn’t take millions of dollars, complex data analytics, and a degree in psychology. Instead, all it takes is a simple look. Watch their process, engage with them, ask them questions, and listen to them.  

How are customers interacting with your product? What’s the first thing they do when they enter your store? What’s the last thing they do before they leave? How long are they spending in each department? Do you notice anything that hampers their experience?

Take a look at your competitors. How are your potential customers interacting with them? What does this business offer that you don’t or vice versa? What is your, as Harvard Business School professor Clayton M. Christensen says, “job to be done?” What are your customers hiring your product or service to accomplish? Understand why your users are turning to your products.

Ownership of Emotions

Many companies have already taken hold of their customers’ emotions, though cynically. Subliminal advertising is a key example. However, the ownership of emotions does not have to be cynical. When used correctly, it can be the “holy grail” for companies.

Owning emotions begins with the aforementioned ability to understand. When you truly understand a customer’s choices and then act to make the experience better, you’re building a relationship of trust. That trust is the foundation of emotional ownership.

One way to build this trust is to reduce the “emotional” noise that surrounds your customers. Let them know that, even on their worst day, your business or product is there for them and that it will be a constant in their lives.

Think of restaurants and the long wait times you have to endure when they’re busy. Think of how angry—or “hangry”—you feel as you stand around, waiting for your table, and listening to your stomach growl. However, think of how some restaurants are able to reduce that emotional noise by serving you finger foods and drinks as you wait.

Also, seek to understand what emotionally motivates your customers.

Why should they be motivated to visit your store or use your product? To feel confident? Free? Unique? Secure? Successful? Research shows that all human beings are motivated by one of those factors.

The Unexpected

Experiences become stronger and more memorable when they’re accompanied by an element of surprise. Surprise can be addictive, which will only keep your customers coming back for more.

Think about mailing your customers or clients small packages with gifts and swag. Everyone loves to get mail and everyone loves free stuff, especially when it’s least expected.

A surprise doesn’t have to be a huge flash mob (though it could be!). Hand out snacks at your store. Is it a cold day? Give your customers hot chocolate or warm punch. Is it a client’s birthday? Send a card! Even a small note of thanks for a customer’s business is a nice little surprise.

The most important thing to remember: simply be sincere and don’t become predictable. Chocolates on hotel pillows were once a great surprise for guests. However, now that their wow-factor has faded, hotels are continuously trying to get back to the “unexpected.”

Follow-Through

You’ve made promises and established goals. The only thing that’s left is to follow through on them. This starts with creating your mission statement, one that you, your employees, and your customers can commit to it. This will define your customer experience.

Your mission statement must promise to impact yourself/your business, the community, or the world. It may commit to impacting one, or all three. However, whatever it promises, you must follow through on. Your customers’ trust, and thus their experience, depends on it.

More about these five elements can be discovered in Unforgettable: Designing Customer Experiences that Stick, to be published in 2018.

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Kyle H. David has made a career in technology and entrepreneurship for nearly 20 years. In 2001, he formed The Kyle David Group, now KDG. Over the past 16 years, KDG has grown at a rapid pace, attracting clients ranging from the United States Senate to major financial institutions, international nonprofits, and Division I universities.