Some people claim that print marketing is dead.
Some of you may even be here because of my print marketing efforts.
Rethinking Print Marketing
When I’m talking about Print Marketing, I do not mean buying expensive ads, renting billboards and signs, or other traditional ad campaigns. Those can be effective for certain kinds of businesses. But for the average solo entrepreneur just starting out, print ads may not be as cost-effective as other options.
I repeat: I believe in print marketing. My day job involves creating print marketing for a media company all day long. I’ve seen its benefits when done right.
What I am referring to, for small businesses on a shoestring budget, is the simple concept of always having something on you that describes your business, how to find out more online, and any other pertinent information.
For me, this involves business cards. Because I design both for clients, and personal projects that I then sell in print on demand sites like Zazzle, I have different business cards based on the topic.
I do not just leave my business cards lying around. I use them sparingly. In fact, I only pull them out if someone shows interest.
Let me explain.
Making Connections Organically
Perhaps it is just where I live (rural Michigan), but I frequently make business contacts while out and about, either on a staycation or while running errands. It usually goes like this:
“Whoa, cool t-shirt.”
“Thanks. I designed it myself. I’m glad you like it”
“That’s great. I love it!”
“Thanks. Here, take my business card. There’s more where that came from.”
Three days later, Zazzle tells me I sold the shirt I was wearing…:)
Make the connection first. Don’t walk around in “salesperson” mode. Be a normal person, out doing your thing, and use the connections you make organically to spread the word locally.
Having a supply of business cards on you (maybe in a nice holder) helps you to always be ready if you make a connection. Help them connect with you further.
I never expect a sale when I first meet someone. Instead, I try to be helpful and to make a connection I can foster.