What is the one thing your print business needs to survive? Print buyers.
Without a steady stream of new and returning print buyers showing up at your online or physical doorstep, you’re likely to find yourself hard-pressed to make ends meet, let alone dream of growing your business.
But, what does it take to find an audience, attract them, and then ultimately build a lifelong partnership with them?
While a print buyer’s relationship journey with you may vary somewhat, most follow a similar progression. In the sales and marketing world, that journey is called the customer buying process.
Let’s look at your part in their journey, though. What do you need to do at each step of their journey to invite (and keep) those coveted print buyers in a relationship with you?
Over the next six weeks, you’ll discover six steps you should be mindful of when wooing your buyer. They are to:
- Create Awareness
- Cultivate Connection
- Establish Trust
- Become Exclusive
- Continue the Pursuit
- Build a Lifelong Advocate
Do You Like Me? Check Yes or No.
Think back for a minute to your elementary school days.
Remember when that special someone caught your eye? Everything within you wanted to reach out, but there was always that one nagging thought that kept eating at you: “They probably don’t even know I exist.”
Eventually, you most likely did what all kids that age do. You wrote a simple note to test the waters with a single line of, “Do you like me? Check yes or no.”
Taking that initial step isn’t all that different with your print buyers.
There is, however, one notable difference: your print buyers really might not know you exist (yet!). That’s why creating an awareness of your brand is first on the list.
6 ways to Create Awareness for Your Brand
1. Make the First Move
This one might sting a little, but remember you can’t blame the print buyer if they don’t know you exist.
It’s your responsibility to initiate contact and make the first move. While you might be the greatest print company the world has ever seen, it means nothing if your print buyers have no idea who you are.
2. Focus on the Key Points of Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Oh, sweet SEO. You simply cannot have a conversation about creating awareness and attraction with your audience without mentioning SEO.
There are plenty of things the SEO experts will tell you that you can do to optimize your website, but before you go all hog-wild and start panicking, start by remembering these key things:
- If you use your website to answer the questions your customers are searching for, the need to worry about good SEO will be greatly reduced.
- SEO will never “save” your company or make you an overnight success, so prepare yourself to dig in for the long game. Good SEO comes when you commit to doing the work.
- SEO-friendly is important, but never at the expense of being human-friendly. If you work to please your audience, you’ll please the search engines.
3. Market Your Value
One thing that will always turn heads and capture attention is value. Tack the word “free” on there, and you can quickly make yourself known to your print buyers.
But, what can you give away for free that will add value to your audience? Consider the following:
- If you offer Private Label Websites, try marketing them as a free, value-added service.
- Use free Artwork Layout Templates as a way to attract your print buyers.
4. Update Your Website Regularly
Quick question: how many websites have you been on today? Do you remember any of them?
The best websites are the ones you bookmark. In other words, they’re the websites that you have found enough on-going value on them to keep coming back. If you want to attract your print buyer and create awareness, keep these website tips in mind:
- Invest in professional options. A good design not only helps build trust and credibility, but many visitors equate good website design with a competent business.
- Provide regular content updates. Every time your print buyer comes to your website, have fresh, relevant content waiting for them.
- Make yourself bookmark-worthy. Take a look at your website and ask yourself, “If I was a print buyer, would I have a reason to come back to this website?” If you only offer an order form, there’s no reason they need to visit your site except to place an order (and why would they do that if they don’t know you?). On the flip side, if you only offer content but no way to order printing, you’ll stifle the relationship before it ever gets a chance to take off. Focus on a two-prong approach: content + online ordering.
5. Be the Answer (A.K.A. Provide Value)
Crawl into the mind of your print buyer for a minute, and you might hear questions like these:
- “I wonder how much it would cost to print…”
- “I want to try direct mail, but I wonder how…”
- “What paper should I use for my print project?”
One of the best ways to make yourself known to your audience and create awareness for your brand is to be the company that provides the answer your print buyers are looking for.
Start providing print, design, tech, and marketing tips on your website, begin to feature helpful FAQ content on your site, and start a blog focused on creating content that answers questions. If you want to stretch yourself even further, start a podcast or webinar that print buyers can glean from.
If that worm of doubt is sneaking into your mind with thoughts like, “Why would they listen to me? I don’t know everything there is to know about printing.”
Remember, you don’t have to be THE expert; you need to be THEIR expert. Simply tend the garden of influence you do have. You have knowledge to share, and they’ll appreciate you for it.
6. Promote Yourself
Lastly, do a little promotion to awaken the masses to all you have to offer. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Discounts and deals. Everyone loves a good deal. Feature special promotions or offer first-time customer discounts to appeal to your new audience members.
- Use print! If you’re trying to sell your buyers on the benefits of print marketing, it only makes sense that you, yourself, would be using print marketing to market your business. Get into a monthly routine of sending direct mail content to get your name out there and create a connection with your prospects.
- Logos, logos everywhere! Your logo should be on anything out in the world that can be seen and shared with others. This includes t-shirts, vehicle clings, and all of the lovely swag you sell to your print buyers.
- Embrace your community. Sponsor an event in your area or get out and serve by volunteering. The bond of a local community is hard to break, so capitalize on it.
When you create awareness and attract your print buyers in these ways, you’ll be on your way to cultivating a connection that sparks a lasting relationship.