How to integrate offline and online marketing to boost sales & loyalty

Ian Edwards
September 14, 2020

Considering we live in a digital, connected world, it’s not hard to understand why over 60 percent of marketers believe traditional or offline marketing isn’t important to their overall marketing efforts. 

Yet one of the best ways to maximize your organization’s marketing strategy? Merging online and online efforts.pencil squiggle

Why combine offline and online marketing?

Different marketing strategies cater to different portions of your customer base or audience. Integrating online and offline marketing lets you reach people where they are while building a trusted and cohesive brand. 

It can also:

  • Boost customer loyalty.
  • Better promote new products and services.
  • Generate more leads.

The most effective marketing campaigns use offline and online techniques together to drive website traffic and, for businesses with a physical presence, draw people into an office or retail location.

What is Online Marketing?

Email, social media, display and other pay-per-click ads, search engine optimization (SEO), and any marketing that leverages web-based channels to spread a message about your brand falls under “online marketing.” The goal is to reach customers where they spend their time searching, reading, and socializing online.

laptop screenBenefits of Online Marketing

There are many benefits inherent to online marketing as a way to attract, engage, and convert virtual visitors to customers. One of the key benefits is the ability to measure in real-time the impact of any given campaign and/or channel. Whether you call it internet marketing, web marketing, or digital marketing, online marketing is highly beneficial to your business growth and revenue.

What is Offline Marketing?

Offline marketing is any strategy your business uses to attract customers or boost sales that doesn’t involve your website, search, or social media efforts. Print ads, business cards, and direct mail postcards are three of the most popular offline marketing tools businesses use. It can produce powerful results, especially when paired with your online marketing. Aside from high-quality print materials, other successful strategies businesses have used include:

  • Loyalty and referral programs.
  • Branded merchandise and employee gear.
  • Digital signage.
  • Trade show and other local sponsorships.

desk sceneBenefits of Offline Marketing

There are many benefits inherent to online marketing as a way to attract, engage, and convert virtual visitors to customers. One of the key benefits is the ability to measure in real-time the impact of any given campaign and/or channel. Whether you call it internet marketing, web marketing, or digital marketing, online marketing is highly beneficial to your business growth and revenue.

Online vs Offline Marketing: Do I Need Both?

Brands investing solely in online marketing soon find out it’s a crowded and competitive environment. Although the opportunities to reach a wider audience can’t be beat, it can be challenging to capture the attention you need to increase sales. The best approach is to develop a balance of online and offline marketing campaigns that complement and support each other in reaching your sales goals.

The Benefits of Both

  • Quality/Quantity. Online marketing wins when it comes to quantity. Offline marketing focuses on quality. High-quality print materials and products promote your brand’s image and capture a different dynamic when compared to online content.
  • Inherent value. While you may, particularly for budgetary reasons, move most of your marketing efforts online, offline methods have one great advantage: repeated, consistent exposure that helps you tackle the “rule of seven” theory.

lightbulbHow Do I Combine Online and Offline Marketing?

How you integrate online and offline marketing depends a lot on your business goals, but there are certain techniques many brands use successfully:

  • Associate offline campaigns/events with online calls-to-action. For example, if you operate a brick-and-mortar location, you can hold an in-store event such as a sale that you promote online via social media and email.
  • Use online data to support offline efforts. The data you collect from your customers’ online behavior can be leveraged to gain insights into what your audience likes, dislikes, how they shop, and more.
  • Build your email list. Offline efforts can be used to encourage people to share their email. Just be sure to give people an opt-out option.
  • Take online content offline. Do you write blog posts that get a lot of attention? Consider pitching them to offline channels such as trade or niche magazines.

Another great example of integrating online and offline marketing? Gamification

What is gamification and how does it work?

For instance, you can gamify the in-store experience to make your loyalty program more engaging, offer store credit, launch new products, and more. Not only does it drive one-time and repeat actions, gamification lets you gain insight into customer preferences so you can better target them via mobile and other channels.

Any one of BeeLiked’s gamification solutions can be used to assist your offline marketing efforts. It’s easy to create a QR code from a unique campaign URL and then place it on your printed materials such as receipts, brochures, business cards, and packaging.  

Gamifying a customer’s in-store experience seamlessly integrates online and offline marketing and, when used in the right way, can have outstanding results.

Ultimately, any effective combination of online and offline marketing strategies takes time. Online incentives like gamification are a simple and creative way to captivate audiences, personalize customer experiences, and build trust in your brand.

How Can You Convert Customers Online?

Despite the growth of online sales, in-store experiences are still highly-coveted by customers. An ideal world is one where your in-store customers shop with you online as well. How do you convert them in order to increase sales and revenue?

It starts with using the data you’ve collected to better understand what your customers need. Offline data from loyalty cards and surveys can be combined with online data such as browsing history and purchases to gain insight into your customers’ thinking.

Some other ideas:

  • Geolocation tactics can be used to create targeted print materials that drive local customers to your website.
  • Invite customers to visit, follow, and like, your Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts so they can join “insider” conversations and get word of special promotions.
  • Everyone knows an email list is one of a business’ most valuable marketing tools and email subscribers are its most valuable followers. Reliable offline ways of collecting email addresses include trade show giveaways, business card raffles, and customer satisfaction surveys. Incentives, even small ones like a discount coupon, can be useful in getting people to turn over their email address.

About BeeLiked

BeeLiked is in the business of making the customer experience a fun and exciting one. Our customizable gamification solutions boost user engagement, build referral loops, and keep customers coming back. Get in touch with us today to set up a no-obligation discovery call and to learn more.

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