Social media evangelists will chat you up about the benefits of using Twitter, Facebook, blogging and search to promote your business. And they are dead right! There is a digital revolution happening in today's advertising and marketing world, and social media will get more eyeballs on your site, improve search engine rankings, help build lists and generate some great sales leads.
Yet, while social media endeavors and search marketing do produce some great results, and every once in a blue moon something "goes viral" or gets more than a million hits online, there's still not a lot of companies out there getting the same kind of results with social media that they did with more traditional marketing methods. That's why it's still helpful to send out printed marketing materials that reinforce your social media and online marketing strategies. Here are some tips for creating print campaigns that also point prospects online: 1. Brand your social media assets Much like a tagline or a logo that's used in every business communication, create an easy-to-read blurb, including each of your social media assets. For print purposes (without the use of hyperlinks) it's best to include the direct link to your Twitter profile or LinkedIn profile so that recipients can click right to you without having to do a search. Having this social media promo-piece formatted and ready to go will make it easy for you to include it in every printed piece you produce, including postcards, business cards and letterhead. 2. Incentivize interaction Everyone is on Facebook, so why should customers visit your Facebook page specifically? Maybe it's because you provide inside information on sales and discounts only to your Facebook friends? If you are trying to build your Twitter following, then offer a special prize to the umpteenth follower, in order to encourage folks to sign on and add you to their list. It's also extremely important to follow-through on all social media platforms with engaging and relevant updates -- but that's a whole separate blog post in itself! 3. Rinse and repeat With all of the hub-bub online, and people having access to e-mail and social media on their computers and mobile phones, there's one channel that is arguably under-used: snail mail. People's regular mailboxes have less clutter and commotion than their e-mail inboxes, so don't be afraid to hit them repeatedly with relevant, targeted direct-mail marketing. Postcards with your social media assets or social media promotions on them, are cheap to print and a great vehicle for a series of marketing messages. Try sending a postcard, then an e-mail and finally a follow-up postcard. This book-end multichannel approach can help you get the maximum effect and response from a campaign.