Of all the hats creative business owners wear, the Marketing Hat is the least liked. We dream up our products and services, we write our books (yes, authors, your book is your business), we have everything ready to go and then we have to get it out there into the world. It’s especially difficult for creative folks because many tend to have the belief they’re solitary, behind the scenes workers who shy away from the spotlight.
Bringing the product or service is half the battle. If you don’t market it, no one knows it exists. Keep working with the door shut and no one can hear you.
Marketing is all about starting a conversation, breaking the ice and building a relationship. Today we’re going to talk about marketing materials. These are the printed or digital pieces that help break the ice and open up communication. People like having something they can walk away with, a tangible reminder of who you are. A little visual stimulation goes a long way to cementing your product or service, especially when it’s done well.
The Business Card
A business card is the most common marketing material you’ll have in your arsenal. A small, 3×5 card with your logo and contact information carries a big punch. They’re easy to carry and easy to hand out. You can print them out yourself or you can go to a company like Moo.com and choose from a variety of lovely papers, inks, foils and card styles to make your card stand out from the rest.
Whether you write fiction or non-fiction, book marks are a staple for authors. Go to any book festival and you’ll see bookmarks stacked on every table. They’re portable, inexpensive and have plenty of room for graphics and information. Many readers at these shows collect bookmarks and use them over and over. Think of how often they’re being reminded of your book each time they use it!
Post cards are fun and eye-catching. They’re big enough that you can advertise two different products or services on each side with much more information than the business card or book mark. Use them to advertise your most popular products and services.
Posters and Banners
Here’s where marketing materials become fun. There’s nothing more exciting than seeing your brand on a big, bright poster or banner. At trade shows and festivals these draw attention and get people talking. If you’re an author and have a great book cover, why not turn that into a special edition poster for fans to buy? Posters and banners come in all sizes and materials for all kinds of budgets. Invest in a vinyl banner and you can use it over and over at every show. The same goes for posters printed on quality paper, though a little more care and attention is needed to keep them in good shape.
Brochures are the ultimate in information. If you have a lot of services or products you want to share quickly the brochure is a perfect addition to your marketing materials. The brochure is like a mini-catalog with a taste of your best offerings all in one place.
Click here to download the brochure we did for Wendi’s painting classes.
Promotional Apparel and Items
Who doesn’t like pens, t-shirts, notebooks and tote bags? Though these items may be a bit more expensive than the printed materials, people love them. T-shirts and tote bags are great advertising at shows. Tote bags especially. People need something to carry all that swag in, why not make it your tote bag with your business on it?
What is a media kit? It’s a one stop information packet that introduces you to potential clients and stores that shows who you are and what you do.
Media kits come in many shapes and forms and each one is going to be different depending on your needs. Some people may need printed versions and others digital downloads, or both. Stay tuned next week when we go into more detail on the Media Kit, how they’re made and how they can help you.
Marketing is a full time job in itself, but if you take these basic steps you can make it easier on yourself and your potential clients and customers. All of it serves as a starting point for building that crucial relationship and making a memorable impact long after you’ve parted ways.
Need help with your marketing materials? I’m glad you asked. Contact us today and set up a free one hour consultation with us. Tell us how we can help you.
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