Perfect Custom Printed Marketing Materials: 3 Steps When Ordering
The world of marketing and advertising has always had one simple goal: helping your company stand out from the crowd.
But now, more than ever, that’s becoming a real challenge. The internet and various other technologies have opened up consumers to a wealth of choices, reducing the impact of local businesses and forcing them to work harder to be noticed.
But not all hope is lost.
How, you might be asking, in this advanced, A.I., me-first, technology-addled, choice-driven world can a business possibly make itself stand out to local consumers?
The answer, of course, is through targeted marketing, and nothing targets your customers better than the right custom printed marketing materials.
But whether you want to give away shirts at your next open house, or sell coffee mugs at your counter, choosing the right custom printed marketing piece isn’t always easy.
That’s why we’ve designed this three-step system to help you choose your custom printed marketing material, and choose right.
Custom Printed Marketing Materials
3-Step Order Process
Step 1: Recognize your audience and ask their opinion.
Picture this: David has started a new after-school tutoring company and wants to give all of the teachers at the local high school a piece of marketing swag to help advertise his business. David and his business partner settle on custom printed rubber bracelets because they’re inexpensive, cute, and easy for teachers to wear. Seems like a winning choice, right?
However, after having 500 bracelets designed and printed, his teacher friend informs David that teachers aren’t allowed to wear any kind of bracelets during school hours due to a new dress code regulation set by the school board. In one moment, David’s plan went from secure to sunk, and now he has to re-evaluate what’s left in his marketing budget for the year. Plus, he’s got all of these bracelets on hand. Darn!
The above example illustrates a classic marketing conundrum: a great idea that just doesn’t work for the business for which it was intended. David didn’t choose a bad product, in fact, the product he chose has been a proven winner for other organizations. However, it was the wrong product for his audience, which is something he would have figured out right away if he had not only identified his audience but also asked for their opinion.
David and his partner needed to identify their audience (teachers) and connect with them to see what their feedback was on the proposed marketing item and plan. Had they taken this small extra step in gathering feedback from their audience, they would have known that rubber bracelets were a no-go, and moved on to another product that would have hit the mark.
In short: Don’t be afraid to ask customers what they want. Their answers might just surprise you.
Step Two: Identify which kind of design best represents your brand.
Artwork that works for a record label, might not work for an evangelical church. A design that works for a political candidate, probably won’t work for an in-home green daycare. What works for us, might not work for you – do you see what we’re getting at?
The only true limitation on art and design is the imagination, but when thinking of what kind of design you want to feature on your custom printed marketing material, think about the image you’re trying to convey to the public.
More conservative companies may just want to display their logo – and there’s no shame in that. Many times, a well-placed logo printed on a complimentary color can be a sleek and timeless look for a piece of marketing material.
However, the record label or daycare mentioned above may want to get a little more creative with their image, especially if they’re trying to stand out from the crowd and show off the creativity of their business.
No matter what kind of design you choose, be sure to conceptualize it after you’ve chosen what kind of marketing item you’re going to have custom printed. This will help you establish a scope of work to give to your graphic designer, and give you the ability to present the art to some VIP members of your target market for feedback.
Step 3: Develop a Distribution Strategy
Whether you’re going to sell your custom printed promotional items, which works better for higher-value items like shirts, hats, or tumblers, or are going to give them away at a trade show or via a contest on social media, it’s best to plan a distribution strategy even before you have a product in hand.
How do you do this, you ask? Simple!
Think again about your audience. Where will they be when they interact with you? What kind of value will they find in the product you’re offering? What, if anything, would they be willing to pay to be your brand ambassador?
All of these questions and more will help you figure out how to best get your products in the hands of the people who want them most. And whether you plan on giving them away or selling them direct to consumers, always remember to express the value of the product and thank them for helping your business.
Okay, let’s sum it up:
Though there is plenty of data in the world of marketing and advertising, there is no science that will tell you for sure what will work for your brand.
We know: Bummer.
Luckily, the world of custom printed marketing materials is so large that you have plenty of choices when it comes to selecting what is best for your marketing goals.
Some of our favorite custom printed items are those that people use in their everyday lives: USB drives, tumblers, even license plate holders for cars. But don’t let our preferences influence you.
Instead, use our three questions above and browse our catalog to select what’s right for you. Then, with a little customer research and a little luck, you’ll be well on your way to building your brand – one marketing item at a time.