Build Website Traffic with Print (Cheaply) | October 24th, 2011

Build Website Traffic with PrintMost businesses know that simply having a website is not enough. They are aware that much needs to be done to get found. Sound SEO practices should be adhered to, social media must be given a fair amount of attention, and a Google ad words campaign may even be added into the mix. However, one major source of website traffic is often overlooked: good old-fashioned ink on paper.

Print advertising still plays a major roll in marketing a business. Take a moment to think back to the last few websites you looked at. Were you prompted to look at a website because of an ad you saw or a business card that someone gave you? Chances are a printed piece influenced at least a percentage of your web viewing.

So why don’t more businesses use print to drive traffic to their website? One of the drawbacks is cost. To launch a full scale advertising or direct mail campaign can be very costly, often with little return on investment.

How do you effectively market your website through print without breaking the bank? Here are five different ideas that might work well for you:

1. Write an article. See if a community paper or magazine is looking for contributors, or submit an article to your chamber of commerce newsletter. Offer useful advice or an entertaining story that will build interest in your company. I can tell you that this works. My mother doesn’t have internet and is constantly sending me newspaper clippings with a website to look up. The best part of this method of advertising? It only costs is a little of your time.

2. Make your business card compelling. You need a business card anyway. Why not make it work a little harder? Give people a reason to want to visit your site. Don’t just list your Web address beneath your phone number. Explain the benefits of visiting your website, or offer an online contest. Perhaps something like “visit our website to enter our monthly drawing for a free gift certificate”. Think you don’t have enough room for all that text? Many printers are now offering two-sided business cards for no more cost than single-sided cards.

3. Vehicle lettering. Okay, this isn’t exactly ink on paper, but it works. Stick your website across your tailgate or back window with a line of text about what you do or why they should visit your site. A word to the wise though. Don’t cut people off.

4. Distribute posters or flyers. These don’t have to be overly elaborate or large. Find stores or businesses that will allow you to place a small poster on their bulletin board. You can also team up with businesses that offer non-competitive services. For example, a cafe might allow a neighboring gift shop to leave their brochures near the cash register.

5. Sponsor an event or class. There is a local cooking class. You own a specialty kitchen store. Offer to pay some or all of the printing costs of the class materials in exchange for a small ad at the bottom of the page.

The best way to let potential customers know about your business is to get it in front of them, no matter what the method. Build your website, do the SEO stuff, and get on Facebook, but don’t neglect the obvious. Print is still a very valid way to inform people about your business.

Post a comment