In this day and age, marketing strictly to an offline audience is no longer an option. Marketing online is an essential part of the game. To do it well you must maintain consistency between your online and offline brand.
Your brand is who you are as a company and how you represent your company to the world. It illustrates what differentiates your company from the competition and makes you recognizable to your audience. It is also what attaches your clients to your organization and serves not only as the catalyst for purchase, but as the basis for customer loyalty to your team, your products and/or your services.
So, how do you maintain continuity between your brand both online and offline?
- First of all, start by creating a strong brand
Understand who your current and potential clients are and what it is they are searching for. Once you have determined what sets your organization apart from the rest, focus on streamlining and strengthening your message to address the needs of your clients.
- Understand how your targeted audience prefers to receive their information.
Let’s face it; everyone seeks out information in different ways and from different sources. Research how your targeted market finds information about your industry and then focus your efforts there. Your marketing plan could include the creation of brochures, television campaigns, an interactive website and/or a Facebook account. We are all faced with time and budget constraints, so be sure to focus your energy on the right things and in the right places.
- Communicate your brand.
The next step is to ensure that every individual within your company both understands and conveys your desired message. Transparency and consistency will help to attach your clients to your company. Each and every one of your marketing materials should also convey your message and reflect your brand in its entirety. Colours, imagery and messaging should always remain consistent.
- Marketing, both online and offline, with your brand in mind.
Your online marketing should be a reflection of your offline marketing. Your message should remain the same; it’s simply the voice that may change slightly. Online marketing, at least in terms of social media, tends to have a more casual voice. Remember, your goal here isn’t to talk at people; it’s to start a conversation.
- Evaluate your strategy on a reoccurring basis.
Don’t forget, times and trends change…often. It’s imperative that you stay abreast of current trends in marketing along with current trends in your industry. Every day a new avenue for online marketing emerges and you have to evaluate, on a continual basis, if the strategy you are utilizing to deliver your message is the best one.
The key is to view your marketing strategy holistically. Once you’ve determined your message, you simply need to figure out the best way to communicate and disseminate it to your audience. As stated above, your marketing strategy should remain fluid, and remember, never be afraid to try something new; it may just be your key to success.