Archive for October 2012

Loyalty Marketing… or We HEART You!

October 31, 2012

Customer loyalty programs are an easy and effective way to keep customers coming back to your business. Here are a few tips to help you create a loyalty program with a simple yet important goal: rewarding repeat customers.

* Offer custom-printed punch cards or stamp cards for customers who frequent your business. A simple reward (such as “buy five car washes, get the sixth free”) may be enough to keep customers from visiting your competition down the street.
* Utilize the back side of your loyalty-marketing promotions to advertise upcoming events, highlight exclusive offers, share helpful tips, and more.
* Celebrate! Be sure to recognize customer birthdays, holidays, and even the date your customer joined your loyalty club.
* Provide loyalty club members with special coupons for free upgrades, such as “upgrade to a premium deluxe XYZ for the same price as our standard XYZ.”
* Reward customers who buy ahead. For example, if you own a repair shop, you might offer a year-long package of oil changes for a discounted rate. Not only will the customer be happy to save money, but you can ensure the customer will return to your business all year long.
* Invite loyal customers to join a review panel group, and offer free products or services in exchange for their valuable feedback and input on how to improve your business.
* Develop creative ways to show your company’s reciprocal loyalty to customers. Send “thank you” campaigns, for example, with exclusive discounts or promotions.

Give us a call if we can help you create loyalty program marketing materials your customers will love!

We Want Your Vote!

October 27, 2012

With Election Day fast approaching, why not take advantage of the voting spirit by creating a few fun polls for your business? Here are some clever ways to gather opinions and reward your loyal customers in the process:

* Ask customers to vote for their favorite products or services. Send a postcard campaign or statement stuffer with a web link to an online ballot. Distribute campaign flyers. Post information on your Facebook page, website, or other social media channels. And have a ballot box at the main desk of your business, where customers can vote by paper ballot if they prefer.
* Encourage customers to learn more about your products by creating a game-like quest. Provide clues through various communication channels (email, direct mail, social media), and reward those who complete the quest.
* Inspire participation by offering a grand prize drawing, as well as a guaranteed coupon or smaller thank-you to all who vote.
* Create an “Election Day” sale to encourage extra traffic, and consider offering an additional discount to any customers who come from the polls wearing an “I voted” sticker.
* If you’re creating an in-house promotion, remember that food is always a crowd pleaser. Consider offering cookies, cake, donuts, or simply coffee, hot chocolate, or cider.
* Provide a follow-up marketing campaign to announce the winner, and consider running an exclusive special on that particular product or service following the election.
* Maximize your promotions by offering combo specials that include your most popular products with lesser-known or newer products.

Our creative experts are here anytime you need help spreading the word about an upcoming sale or promotion. Give us a call today!

What Declining Sales Really Mean

October 22, 2012

Many businesses are currently experiencing a decline in sales. Some owners and executives believe this is due to outside economic conditions. Although the economy may have some bearing, perhaps the real reasons for the decline are more fundamental issues that no one in the company wants to face. The economy has only masked the issues and helped sweep them under the rug.

Many in this predicament think, “If only we could increase sales, everything else would take care of itself.” Oftentimes, the declining sales pattern is not the real problem; it’s just a symptom of other underlying issues. Perhaps the issues are in management, staffing, or a lack of effective marketing and sales.

If your company is experiencing a sales slump, it may be time to do a little soul searching to find the real issues. If you decide to take this head on, here’s a four-step plan to help you lick the problems.

Step 1 — Assess your current situation. What strengths do you see? What weaknesses? Are there opportunities you might be missing? And what are your threats? The more honest you can be at this step, the better the foundation for the rest of the process.

Step 2 — Now that you have an outline of the problems, it’s time to make a diagnosis. What are the causes behind the problems and issues you’re facing? Look beyond the surface issues, and try to get to the root causes.

Step 3 — Now that you have the assessment and a diagnosis of the situation, it’s time to make a plan that addresses your diagnosis by taking advantage of the strengths you identified and establishing ways to correct the weaknesses.

Step 4 — This is where the rubber meets the road. All that analysis will lead to no good unless you follow up with action. It’s time to follow through and act on the plan by implementing the changes outlined in the previous step.

By following through on these four simple but powerful steps, you can not only turn around sagging sales but also position your company for long-term growth.

Printing Is a Responsible Choice

October 3, 2012

In lieu of a “Think before you print” email tagline, we encourage you to consider adding something like this to your emails:

“It’s OK to print responsibly. Not using paper in order to save trees is comparable to not eating salad in order to ‘save’ vegetables. Managed timberlands are similar to agricultural crops which provide clean air, clean water, and wildlife habitat, as well as millions of jobs nationwide.”

While there are many misconceptions about the paper and printing industries, we proudly stand behind them both, and we encourage you to check out these resources to learn more about why printing is a responsible choice: