Integrating offline and online marketing

Wednesday - July 18th, 2012

Written by: Tristan Pelligrino

Integrating offline and online marketing

Just about every day as I walk to work, I go by the Old Town theater in Alexandria, VA. Earlier this morning, I was walking down King Street towards the theater and noticed a large QR code in the window. I scanned it and the code brought me to the theater’s Kickstarter page. I’m happy to see that they’re going to rejuvenate the theater and make it a featured attraction in Old Town again.

After checking out the Kickstarter page on my phone, I thought about how important it is for organizations to integrate offline and online marketing initiatives. In some cases, when working with an online branding company, everyone can get focused on the digital/online aspects of marketing. However, I also thought about how important it is to keep your online and offline marketing in sync.

Below is a list that includes four key considerations for any organization looking to maintain a consistent brand across online and offline marketing initiatives.

  1. Be approachable – If you have a retail operation, it is very important to be personable when greeting customers. Even if you don’t deal with walk-in customers, it is still very important to be approachable. So, when you put together your online marketing campaigns, make sure your content is approachable. Some key things to integrate include customer testimonials, case studies and in-depth biographies of the leadership. Your potential clients should feel comfortable when arriving at your place of business – whether that is your lobby or your website.
  2. Be human – It doesn’t matter what type of organization you are involved with, there needs to be a human element. Marketing and sales can only go so far. At the end of the day, people buy from people. By integrating your personal story and having a “face” to your organization, online marketing efforts can still be human. In this scenario, a blog helps to document personal stories and lessons learned – from both online and offline adventures.
  3. Listen to customers – One of the advantages of digital marketing includes the data and the opportunity to analyze how customers interact with your content. However, it is important to keep in mind that you can learn from online and offline interactions with customers. In fact, you can use information gathered from online feedback and use this to enhance your in-person communications. For example, we like to compile a list of FAQs and develop posts around these subjects. But, I’ve often found that it is helpful to reference blog posts when talking with customers on the phone or in-person. Over at 522 Productions, I frequently reference a blog post that discusses the factors in pricing video productions.
  4. Analyze and adapt – As noted in #3 above, it is important to listen. After listening, it is imperative to analyze what your customers say and adapt. Twitter and Facebook are great platforms for encouraging feedback and responding. However, it is important to not only respond, but adapt how you meet the requirements of customers. In many cases, you may need an entire section of your website restructured based upon feedback from customers. Or, you may need to create a brand new service line to solve customer problems.

Well, there are a few thoughts that come to mind as businesses look to maintain a consistent brand, both online and offline. Now, before I forget, I’m going to have 522 make a donation to the theater. After all, it’s only a block away.

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