Digital photography has helped both professional and aspiring photographers immeasurably. Normal folks who would have shied away from the complexities of film and darkroom printing can easily pick up a fully-fledged pro DSLR and start clicking away. In today’s world, studios may find it difficult to attract customers when most amateurs think they can pass themselves off as the next Ansel Adams or Annie Liebowitz.
Here are a few tips on improving the marketing reach of your photo studio and positioning yourself above the weekend photographer:
Conduct workshops at schools, colleges, and photo clubs
One thing amateur photographers have is enthusiasm. Not only are they not your real competition, but they can actually be a profit center for you! Host a workshop for half a day, or even just one or two hours. Print flyers and posters and post them at cafes, local colleges and community centers to attract more students.
Reach out to high profile authors who need headshots for dust jackets
Romance novel authors require different portraits compared to history writers. You can pitch your services for free, as word of mouth goes a long way. You might even be able to get a string of jobs from the publisher. Soliciting large companies for headshot work can also be lucrative as more companies are trying to humanize their organization by featuring photos of staff members on their websites and marketing materials.
Host photo shoots for a cause
Non-profits and charity organizations always need new publicity shots for new projects. Try to contact these groups and offer your services for their brochures, posters, calendars and websites. Not only will you be helping yourself, but also those in need.
Cover community events like Special Olympics, local races, and fairs
Participants and organizers of these events would really rather have a pro snapping away to highlight memorable moments. You can also use the opportunity to advertise your business by having a booth or table display setup near the registration area.
Organize contests on social media for free photo sessions
The power of social media is undeniable, but the draw of free stuff is even more potent. You can promote your studio by holding online competitions for free photo sessions every few months. You can simply ask your fans and followers to share your posts or invite their friends to follow your page to rev up word of mouth for your studio.
Any combination of these marketing techniques can help a photography studio immensely. Just remember that not everything is confined to the digital realm. Even though film cameras may be gathering dust, good old printed marketing collateral like flyers and brochures, combined with a lot of goodwill, still have a place in every industry.
Its not a secret that the restaurant industry is highly competitive. Attracting new customers in an often crowded field can be very challenging. But it is possible to stand out and promote your restaurant without having to spend a fortune on marketing. Here are seven effective, but relatively low cost, ways to get more customers for your restaurant.
Improve Your Yelp Listings
According to a recent study 90% of people say that a positive review impacts whether they buy or not. Furthermore, 72% of consumers say that they trust online reviews as much as they do a personal recommendation. With statistics like these it easy to see why it is worth investing time in improving your Yelp listings. The easiest way to improve your yelp rating is to check that positive reviews haven’t become filtered out. Yelp uses an automatic algorithm to determine whether they think a review is authentic or not. Reviews that have been filtered out can be found at the bottom of the page. If a review has been filtered out contact the person who left the review and say how much you appreciate their feedback. Then ask if they will update the review. This will often get it out of the filter. Another approach is to follow the yelp user. This is sometimes enough to add credibility to their profile so that the review is allowed. Even getting a few reviews out of the filter can help to lift your overall rating.
SMS marketing is one of the most effective promotional tactics that a restaurant can engage in. According to a study conducted by consultancy Frost and Sullivan 98% of text messages are read. This compares to only 22% of emails and 12% of Facebook posts. One effective way for restaurants to use SMS marketing is to send their customers vouchers and deals. For example, the restaurant could send a text up to their existing customers with the code D1SC0UNT and ask them to bring in the code to receive a 15% discount off their next meal. One of the great things about using a discount code is that you can measure how effective your SMS marketing is.
Create A Recipe Blog
Restaurants have a unique opportunity to use content marketing to promote their business by creating a recipe blog. A good example of this is Williams-Sonoma with their “Taste” blog. This lifestyle / recipe blog provides advice to help people can use their products to make beautiful and delicious meals. Restaurants can use the same concept by creating blog posts around the cuisine that they offer. For example, a Mexican restaurant could offer recipes and cooking tips for authentic Mexican dishes.
Have A Mobile Optimized Site
One half of all local searches are now performed on a mobile device. Therefore, if a restaurant does not have a mobile optimised website it is virtually invisible to half of all customers looking online for somewhere to eat. A mobile optimised website will have a menu that is clear and easy to read on a small screen, the ability to call with a single tap of the phone and mobile optimised restaurant booking.
Enlist Local Food Bloggers
Local food bloggers can be some of your best advocates for your restaurant. Local food bloggers love discovering little-known restaurants and undiscovered gems. Often these local food bloggers are highly influential with the “foodie” community. Also having a review on a local food blog is another way for people to find your restaurant when they search on Google. You can even consider becoming an advertiser for their blog to increase your reach with their readers.
Create An E-mail Newsletter
E-mail has some of the highest return on investment of any form of marketing. According to The Power of Direct report, by the Direct Marketing Association every one dollar spent on email marketing provides a return of $41. Creating an email newsletter is a great way to get repeat business and build loyalty with your customers. You can keep customers up-to-date with changes on the menu, specials that you’re running and reward them with a special birthday meal. Run a loyalty program to get people to provide you with their email address.
Distribute Your Menu
Menu or flyer distribution is one of the most popular promotional tactics for restaurants for one simple reason – it works. Distributing menus with promotional offers allows you to target customers living in your local area, people who are most likely to visit your restaurant repeatedly if they have a good experience. This is low cost marketing tactic that can produce big results. Target a specific geographical areas and use limited time offers to get people to act quickly. The key to effective menu or flyer distribution is to focus on specials and deals that will be compelling to new customers. United Reprographics offers affordable ways to print flyers and menus. Visit our online print shop for an instant quote.
Using multiple promotional channels to market your restaurant will allow you to reach the widest possible audience. The key to success with marketing your restaurant is to worker smarter not harder. Make the most of every opportunity to attract new customers and to keep bringing back your existing patrons.
Small bakeries are wonderful for the personal touch they often add to each cake or sweet they offer. Anyone who can bake and decorate pastries could start a bakery, but that’s the easy part. Providing quality products, an exceptional experience, managing cash flow, and of course building a customer base is the migraine-inducing side of the business. Hanging up your “Open” sign is rarely going to be enough to grow your sales. As a bakery owner, you’ll want advertising specific to your business if you want to succeed. Look beyond the typical advertising methods used by most businesses to find opportunities for spreading the word about your yummy treats.
Use your mom connections if you have kids. If you don’t have kids, contact your friends or family members who do have kids. Go to sports games, concerts and other events with the child to hand out flyers. There are plenty of moms who are looking for alternatives to the everyday, streamlined treats for kids’ birthday parties. If you cater to food allergies, that’s even better. Many moms, even those who have children without food allergies, are looking for someone to help them put less additives in their children’s food.
Churches and Non Profits
Volunteer everywhere you can. Church dinners are always in need of desserts, and some churches offer coffee with cakes for an after-service fellowship. Ask if you can leave business cards next to the cake or treats you make for these functions. If you make a dessert for your church, ask if you can post a flyer on the church community board. Let the organizer of the dinner or fellowship meeting know that you are interested in selling treats. It is highly likely that they will tell other church members about you. Offer to create something for a non profit group for free, especially if you do not have a church affiliation. A number of non-profit groups have yearly fundraising dinners, so it’s easy to find out who might need a free dessert. Of course, you’ll want to make sure you can leave a stack of business cards on the dessert table.
Consignment is a great idea for smaller bakeries. You can consign whatever you want, and you can help a fellow business generate customers. You can pair up with the clothing store down the street, for example, and reserve a spot for a few items of clothing in your store. You’ll pull in two customer demographics for both businesses. You can consign your treats out to other businesses and share in the profit. A great place to consign treats are smaller diners and local restaurants. Encourage your partner business to leave flyers or business cards with you, and vice versa.
Approach small businesses with your services. Send them a postcard in the mail that they can refer to for their next business lunch. Perhaps they offer their employees or guests a small lunch once a month. Offer to be their primary dessert maker. The small business angle is the only angle on this list that will pay you full price, but don’t make that a reason to ignore the others on the list. After you’ve sent the flyer, stop by with a free sample for the whole office. Get them hooked so they think of you next time they need a special treat for any aspect of their lives.
If you need help printing marketing materials for your bakery, visit www.unitedreprographics.com. You can order online or tell us more about your project and we’ll provide you with a custom quote.
So you have a great promotion that you want to share with your customers and the people who should be your customers… now what? In addition to creating some awesome social media buzz, you might want to think about putting the details on a flyer, jazz it up to make it look spectacular, print ‘em and hit the streets! Here are a few ideas for blasting out those flyers and getting them into the right hands.
Post at Local Shops
One of the best ways to get your flyers seen is to post them at local shops nearby. If your company sells health-related items, for example, the flyers should be posted at gyms, weight loss clinics, health food restaurants, and other similar locations. The type of business you are advertising should determine which shops and places you post your flyers. After all, you want to attract customers who you know are actually interested in buying the type of products you are selling.
Include Them in the Newspaper
Many people either pay to have the paper delivered, or they pick up a copy at a nearby location. Having your flyer in the paper would be an easy way to ensure it gets seen by numerous people. You can bring a copy of your flyer to a local newspaper and pay them to include it in their distribution. Many newspapers offer geo-targeting for flyer inserts so you can focus on the locations that make most sense for your business.
Leave Them at Restaurants and Cafes
A sure-fire way to have your flyers seen is to simply leave them at restaurants and cafes in the area. Many people frequent their favorite restaurants on a regular basis. By leaving your flyers at these locations, you are ensuring that they will be seen by plenty of people.
Many companies take a simple door-to-door approach. They simply walk around nearby neighborhoods and place their flyers in each person’s door. This may be time consuming, but it is the best way to ensure as many as possible people who live close by your business see the flyer and learn about the business.
Use a Flyer Distribution Service
If you have limited time to focus on delivering the flyers, there are actually services that will do the work for you. Simply pay them a fee, and the flyer distribution service will ensure your flyers are delivered to a number of locations. They often have special deals with local shops, restaurants, newspapers, and other businesses that will allow them to post a variety of flyers in regular intervals.
Effective business marketing will ensure customers are being brought into your business. Using flyers is one marketing technique that will continue to work well for companies. As long as you are getting your flyers out to the right people, you will find new customers who are interested in what they see and want to check out all the company has to offer.
Print has seen some awesome new design trends in the last few years and 2014 has great changes in store as well. It’s always exciting to see which trends emerge and take hold and continue to redefine the world of print design. You can expect to see everything from updates in typography to new printing methods. Here are some of the trends to look out for this year.
Type Only Flyers and Brochures
Flat design has taken over the web this year and the sparse and careful use of design elements is becoming more prominent in print as well. Many companies are switching from image-heavy marketing materials to clean and minimalist designs that feature just black and white text. Choose an interesting font and let the words speak for themselves.
Image Only Design
Alternatively, some companies are opting for a single, eye-catching image to grab the attention of consumers, without cluttering it with text. This effect can be very striking and if you choose an image that conveys information about your brand, you can accomplish a lot! Sharp, pretty Instagram-esque images are going to continue to trend in 2014.
Along with crisp, simplistic photos, people and other subjects photographed in interesting, real-life settings are also gaining in popularity these days. Stay away from stock photos as the idea is to elicit stronger emotional connections in your marketing material.
Purple seems to be trending as one of the most popular colors in print design this year. Whether it’s a radiant orchid, lavender or violet, purple is a favorite for print. It seems to express sensitivity and compassion as well as stylishness and individuality. Consider a purple background or font in your design schemes this year.
Type-Lock refers to the recent method of organizing text into easily readable blocks by using different sizes, colors and weights to differentiate ideas, sentences or words. It has become an immensely popular way to convey and show the words that have the most meaning within a block of text. It’s used in many ways and blended into it are design elements like arrows, swirls, logos, etc.
Pepper some of these new design trends into your next print job for marketing materials that will make a lasting impression!
When it comes to employing a time-tested, power-packed marketing tool, you would be hard pressed to find one as efficient as the brochure.
A brochure in its simplest form is a representation of your brand. They are like mini sales people who travel along with your prospects, allowing them to take in your marketing message at their leisure. Think of every time they pull out your brochure, as if they’re stepping into one of your storefronts to browse around.
When designed correctly these powerhouses have the ability to not only attract your target market, but to educate them about your company, your current product, and your plans for future projects. A well designed brochure is capable of breaking down barriers and drawing out new leads and then delivering that new business right to your digital or physical doorstep.
So, what does it take to design a brochure that works?
1. Understand that, like your marketing message, each brochure needs to be targeted.
While you can put together a general brochure that lays out who you are and what you do, the key to standing out in a crowd is to find a way to relay that special thing that makes you different.
Instead of going with a generic or generally themed brochure, define each of the areas in your client’s lives that your products help to improve. Then, based on those benefits, you can purpose a separate brochure to target each of those micro-audiences specifically.
2. If you haven’t done so yet, define your brand.
Use the attention capturing color scheme, the same images or image styles, and your unique logo to create consistency in your brochure message.
3. Know your competition and your budget going in.
Your brochure will doubtfully be the only one passing through your target customers’ hands. Know your competition, understand their brand positioning, and familiarize yourself with their marketing efforts.
The great thing about a brochure is that this cost-effective piece of marketing collateral, when produced well, can easily level the playing field and allow you to present your organization as equal to the competition in a way that you may not be able to achieve with more expensive mass media. Few small businesses can afford to produce a slick television ad, but everyone can find the budget to create a quality brochure.
Knowing your target audience and its general size is one of the key components in running a successful business. Not only does it allow you to project possible earnings, it allows you to determine just how many of your new brochures you’ll need to print. Also, don’t be afraid to test market your pieces by running several different versions of your brochure and going with the one that produces the best overall response.
4. Quality marketing produces quality leads, keep this in mind when developing your imagery.
Finally, you want to be sure that your marketing piece relays your message in a way that doesn’t turn off your audience. If you use unflattering, poor quality, or boring images in your piece, then you may negate all the hard work you’ve put into creating a lead generating brochure. This rule applies to the text you use as well.
If it’s in the budget, put a photographer or graphic designer to work creating the unique images you imagine will represent your message in the best possible light. If your budget only allows for stock photos or graphics, look for ones that don’t look or feel like they are stock. Seek out images with unique angles and clean effects that catch the eye.
The same thing goes with the text you use. You need to be able to speak through your brochure in a way that pinpoints your message and clearly communicates your call-to-action so your potential customer knows what step to take next, whether that’s to call you to schedule an appointment, visit your store to check out your sale, or visit your web site to download a demo.
Flyers are an essential part of of almost all small business marketing strategies. Flyers are easy to produce and relatively inexpensive compared to other marketing tools. They also can be used to promote a wide variety of products and services. Flyers can even be used to re-market to existing customers by informing them about current promotions. But the effectiveness of flyers can vary significantly depending on how well they are designed. Below you can find five copy writing tips to help you maximize your flyer response rates.
1. Use A Headline That Demands Attention
David Ogilvy, arguably the world’s most famous copywriter, once noted that “On the average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. It follows that, if you don’t sell the product in your headline, you have wasted 80% of your money.”
A successful flyer needs to have a captivating headline. If the headline doesn’t inspire the customer to read further, it won’t matter how good the offer is. Types of headlines that get attention include -
Benefits – What is the most powerful benefit that the customer will get if they take up the offer in the flyer? Include this in the headline and show the reader why they need to keep reading.
Questions – Asking a question in the headline is a great way to make the reader curious. Our brains are designed to be unsatisfied when we have an unanswered question. Take advantage of this by piquing the curiosity of your customers with a question.
Urgency – Ever heard of F.O.M.O? It means Fear Of Missing Out and it’s something that almost everyone suffers from. If you are running a special, limited time deal include it in the headline.
Lastly, make sure that the headline is large enough that it can be read from several feet away and can fit on a single line. You only get one chance with your headline so spend some time getting it right.
2. Leave Some White Space
White space should be included around the different elements of the flyer. White space makes the flyer easier to read and allows the images, headline and bullet points to stand out. To make room for the white space you may need to reduce the amount of sales copy. Rewrite the sentences on the flyer until you can express the same point in the minimal amount of words. A good flyer will usually have no more than five sentences.
3. Include The Benefits Not The Features
One of the most important copywriting concepts is features versus benefits. A feature is a specification of your product or service, a benefit is the advantage that the customer will get from using it. For example, a feature of a juice blender might be 400 watt power motor. The benefit is smoother juices in less time. Customers care about benefits not features. They want to know what purchasing a product or service will do for them. List the five major benefits of using your product or service. You can then list these in bullet points on your flyer.
4. Reduce The Number Of Fonts And Graphics
When it comes to designing a flyer more is not always better. One common mistake is using too many or unusual font styles. Font styles should be kept to a minimum of two different types. For the headline be sure to use a bold clean font style, preferably sans-serif. For the details below the headline you want a font that is easy to read. Stay away from ALL CAPS in your body copy as this is difficult to read when there is a lot of it. Stick to something simple and clear.
A good flyer will not have too many images or graphics. Try to use only one or two images. A well chosen image can help to attract attention and reinforce the benefits in the sales copy. Too many images can distract from the sales copy including the headline.
5. Include A Call To Action
You are sending out your flyer because you want customers to take action. But customers need to be told explicitly what that action should be. Examples of call to action may include visiting your website, making a phone call for more information or visiting your store. No matter what the call to action is it should be clear and to the point. This call to action can be included at the bottom of the flyer.
Finally, even the best written flyer will struggle to make sales if it is poorly printed. The printing is a direct reflection of the quality of your brand and so you want to make sure that you are sending the right message. Choose from a selection of gloss and matte paper stock that clearly demonstrates you are a business that pays attention to the details!
If you’re a small business owner, you know how difficult it can be to make the most of your marketing budget. It isn’t always easy to find the best values, and some advertising investments never pay off. Here are a few ideas to help you get the most marketing bang for your buck.
Get online and get social
Social media can be a very viable—and extremely economical—means for marketing your business. Dedicate time to creating a branded Facebook page and use it often to create genuine relationships with your customers, strengthen the brand bond, and make them feel like insiders. Develop and maintain an active presence on Twitter, as well. Use social media as your central marketing hub. News, promotions, events and any other marketing endeavors should link back to these profiles and vice versa, giving your audience a comprehensive view of your organization.
Don’t limit your marketing to the digital realm. On the contrary, in our technology-centric world, tangible items can have more of an impact than ever. Flyers, brochures, business cards and postcards are still relevant and effective tools; you just have to find ways to mix up the way they’re presented. Include them with give-away items, or distribute them at networking events—or perhaps even at a branded fundraiser that you’re sponsoring.
Vehicle wraps are one of the most cost-effective ways to get your brand noticed. Did you know that a single wrapped vehicle can generate 70,000 impressions a day in a heavily populated area? This creative approach turns even a trip to the supply store into an advertising opportunity at a fraction of the cost of a billboard.
Get in their mailbox
Composing and distributing a monthly newsletter is another simple, effective way to market yourself to your customers long after the first sale is made; it will keep you on their mind for future needs. Promotional postcards with discounts and special offers will peak interest. While e-newsletters are great, in-boxes are often overwhelmed. These days, a physical mailbox is the place to be.
DIY marketing doesn’t mean sacrificing a professional image. Present yourself like a pro by designing a cohesive campaign that establishes your brand’s identity, then leave the printing to the experts. United Reprographics uses state-of-the-art methods that ensure all of your printed materials are top quality. From stationery to signage, brochures to vehicle wraps, we have a solution for your needs.