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A company that has a product or service will usually have at least one brochure that acts as a sales tool to inform the public and encourages them to buy that particular service or product.
There are however many other publications a business can utilise that will support this marketing material, and are a very useful method of promoting the company and keeping your name in front of potential customers.
The benefits of appearing in publications that are from a third party (eg. magazine, trade journals and newspapers) are endless. Perhaps the greatest advantage being the general assumption by people that whatever appears in print must be the truth. If it's in print, it must be for real. Based on this theory, your business will subconsciously be perceived as an industry leader, an expert in your field, and a very credible operation.
With the advent of so much communication being transmitted digitally, the value of the printed word still remains very high with clients and potential customers. Because it cannot be changed and updated instantly, there is a certain degree of authenticity and honesty attached to it, and the value is perceived to be higher.
There are many types of publications, and we list the most commonly used by small and medium businesses below:
Newsletters are a common promotional tool and extremely diverse in getting your message across. Ranging from a simple A4 black and white photocopied sheet to a full colour multi page masterpiece. Time, intent and budget will greatly determine the format for your company newsletter.
One thing for certain is that they are a great vehicle to reaching your target audience with specific information, news, articles and topics of interest that appeal directly to them. They can also include competitions, ads from non-competing companies, case studies, comic strips and internal staff information to personalise your company message and build a closer relationship with existing customers and potential clients.
In addition to the printed newsletter, many businesses today are producing electronic newsletters that point back to their website. (Read Websites that Work for more detailed information). The benefits to this is that there are no structured time frame and you can produce them weekly, monthly or quarterly... whatever your budget allows.
Putting together a good newsletter may be time consuming, but they are an extremely effective way to reach your existing and potential clients in an enchondromata and friendly manner.
Distribution ideas for your newsletter are also endless! Include them with your invoices, packing slips, press kits, sales proposals or leave them when you visit a client. Distribute them at trade shows, networking events, or send out as a direct mail campaign. After all, an informative newsletter that gives the potential customer an insight into your business, (not just a product brochure), may just be the deciding factor when choosing a new supplier.
2. MAGAZINE AND TRADE BOOKLETS:
Taking the time to write a feature article for a trade publication showcasing your company’s latest products can be a very lucrative marketing aid because not only do you gain free exposure, you are also perceived to be an industry leader. As mentioned previously, when information appears in print in the third person, it is perceived to the be truth.
To maximise the impact of appearing in print, colour copy the article and send it to all of your customers and prospects to keep them up to date with how well your business is going. Another benefit to this is that everyone loves to be associated with people who are succeeding!
3. ANNUAL OR PROGRESS REPORTS:
Although primarily used by large publicly held corporations (who by law have to issue their stockholders with an annual report) small business holders can issue progress report to clients, business prospects, management prospects, and even potential investors.
Particularly if your business has enjoyed a time of expansion and diversification, a slickly presented progress report will paint your business in a very progressive and professional light, and therefore just may edge out your competition altogether!
Writing a book may not appeal to everyone, but certainly for some industries it is an excellent promotional tool to be seen as an expert in your business field. More and more, small businesses and individuals are self-publishing and reaping the benefits of being seen as a major player in your industry.
For example, professional and motivational speakers publish books on topics such as networking, how to channel your inner strength, how to set up business etc. It adds strength to your level of expertise, keeps your name out in the market place and when given as a gift to prospective clients, is one of the most successful tools of self promotion there could be. You are perceived as an expert in your field and your professional advice and services are valued highly.
5. DIRECTORIES AND GUIDES:
It is beneficial to be included in guides such as a local trade directory, or an industry related guide. These usually would incur a fee, and you should first determine if the cost to participate equals the exposure gained to your target audience.
The cost of creating and producing these varying publications is greatly affected by your budget, and you should always realistically consider what benefits you will receive from your initial outlay. Will your publication reach your target market? Will it gain you new business? Will it enhance your reputation and complement your company image? For it to be a successful promotional tool, both your personal investment and your financial outlay must be realised to make promoting your business through publications worthwhile.
It is important to mention that for all of these printed publications that we mention above, the use of a copy-writer and/or copy editor would be recommended to create the most professional presentation for your business and brand. If you want more information about copy writing, just click here. We are also able to help you and advise you through the process. Contact us to have an obligation-free chat.
Director, Divine Creative Design
We welcome you to use this article on your own website, however we ask that you credit us clearly with an obvious link back to our website.
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