Finding new customers is a priority for any business, especially in service-based industries such as graphic design where a consistent influx of new projects is necessary to keep your doors open. Marketing continues to evolve at a dramatic pace, not only in the online arena but also in the “traditional” print marketing stable. If you want your business to grow in today's economy, you have to work a combination of these two media types to get the face of your company in front of your customers.
I've picked the following marketing venues as three new ways to market your graphic design services online not necessarily because they're the newest ways to market, but because most (if any) graphic designers have not yet tapped into these potentially lucrative resources for generating new customers. You can leapfrog competitors by taking advantage of the opportunities listed herein, but take note that each medium serves not so much as a vehicle for finding new customers, but for helping customers find you. That distinction alone is priceless.
1. Mobile Advertising
If you have an effective Google, Bing or other ad network campaign you know that: a) ad networks can help you make a lot of money, and b) only if you understand how to use them and have the budget to keep up with competitors. Targeting is absolutely essential, which is why it behooves any graphic designer to get his or her advertisement on small business and other applicable niche websites. But what about small business mobile applications, games and networks? How about a user-centric ad network that doesn't so much rely on the content you're looking at right now as it does the content you tend to look at all the time?
Today's mobile advertising technology is as advanced as the online stalwarts, and because the competition is minimal in comparison to the traditional arena you can make a wad of cash from wallet-sized phones.
2. Viral Videos
Viral videos aren't new by any means, but how many graphic designers do you know who have employed this incredible marketing strategy to boost business? Probably none, and I'd bet the ranch on that were I a betting man. Remember the video where the guy slides down the huge ramp and flies over a field to land in a kiddie pool? Faked. The Burger King chicken videos? Stupid, right, but also funny and worth millions of hits. Such viral videos are easy to make and spread – on their own – like wildfire.
3. In A “Second Life”
If you haven't tried out virtual worlds such as Second Life and Entropia, you haven't lived. At least not online, because these 3-D worlds give you amazing avatars that allow you to interact, work and play in awesome fantasy lands. The kicker? Each boasts real economies that allow businesses to set up shop and make real money. Why not launch an avatar design services in your Second Life? Or maybe your avatar will walk around with a T-shirt with your website's URL.