Marketing Beyond the Mouse: Tips for Boosting Brand Awareness in the Physical World
Considering the high level of marketing activity that currently occurs online, it can be easy to forget that up until quite recently, offline marketing was all we had.
According to a recent report from Statista, roughly 72% of UK-based marketers state that the majority of their advertising budget would go towards online channels. 10.5% state that the lion’s share of their budget would go exclusively to offline advertising and the remaining respondents were equally split.
Looking at these stats, it’s plain to see that most contemporary marketers prioritize the digital world. But that doesn’t mean you should give up on boosting brand awareness away from the screen.
When it comes to brand awareness specifically (the corporate art of generating social cognizance around a brand), the physical world is just as advantageous as its digital counterpart. After all, as much as we are glued to our devices, the real world is the one we live in most of the time.
Here are some tips for elevating brand awareness in the physical world and getting consumers to notice your brand. No matter where you are or what your online following is like.
Attend Networking Events and Gatherings
It’s always a good idea to show face and connect on a physical level with the other businesses in your industry. If there’s a networking event or social gathering happening in your area, make an effort to be there and be ready to represent your brand in a positive light.
There are many positive potential outcomes to be experienced through attending networking events. You can forge and nurture professional relationships, discuss market forecasts, and even arrange powerful collaborations that further the reputation and revenue of your brand.
Get Involved in Your Local Community
Arranging and hosting community events in your area is beneficial on a number of levels. For one thing, it gives you an opportunity to give back to your community and serve as a catalyst for positive change.
For another, it helps establish your brand as a trustworthy and purpose-driven entity. Activities like a beach clean-up, charity drive, fundraiser, or free upskilling program are all great ways to cultivate brand awareness while uplifting and supporting your local community.
Try Cold Calling – But Be Strategic
Hear us out before ruling it out.
Cold calling has gotten a notoriously bad rap in the past. But that’s large because it’s executed in poorly researched and ineffective ways. The most common reason people dislike cold calling is that they get called by brands that aren’t relevant to them.
However, when brands are more strategic about who they call, the results can be a lot better than you might expect. In fact, many consumers respond positively to cold calls if they are approached in the right way. You should only ever call numbers of people who fit into your target market.
Ironically, cold calling should also be executed in a “warm” way. That means using comfortable language, being friendly, and speaking with calm confidence while remaining professional.
Utilize Guerilla Marketing
Guerilla marketing is a bold form of unconventional marketing that involves displaying and promoting your brand in a physical place. It typically implicates attention-grabbing promotional products such as giant inflatables or large posters. But it can also describe a wide number of different promotional products:
- Flyers and Pamphlets – there’s a reason why this type of marketing collateral has been around for so long. They’re affordable, easy to distribute, and effective in promoting a message. You can pop them in post boxes, leave them at cash desks, pin them on notice boards, hand them out to passersby, or opt for any other distribution method that works in your area.
- Trendy Stickers – for younger demographics like Gen Z or Millennials, stickers are a popular way to promote favored brands and movements. You can use your logo, fun or funky product photographs, or a combination of both for good-looking stickers that organically spread brand awareness in your area.
- Business Cards – for networking events or impromptu business opportunities, you should always have attractive, updated business cards on hand. You never know when you might need one. These cards may seem outdated, but they’re still very much in demand and an easy way to boost your brand awareness in real-life situations.
- Vehicle Graphics – millions of people are stuck in traffic every day, and they’re often looking for attractive distractions. Adding eye-catching branding to your car is a smart way to market your business while you’re out and about. You can opt for a car wrap, stickers, or magnets that are easy to stick on and off.
Guerilla marketing is all about finding unique ways to stand apart from the crowd and get people to look at your brand. These promotional products might seem subtle, but they are an effective strategy for embedding your brand in the public’s mind.
Hire an Artist to Paint a Promotional Mural
Taking guerilla marketing one step further, an interesting mural is another fantastic way to grab the attention of local consumers.
This is especially true if your target audience is under the age of 40. It isn’t difficult to get municipal permission to paint a mural in a public space, and the result can be both beautiful and effective.
Hire an artist to create an original brand-inspired design and paint it somewhere central with plenty of foot traffic. You can add your brand’s contact details and social media names for anyone who’s interested in learning more, thus promoting your brand even further.
If the mural is interactive, you can encourage passers-by to photograph themselves next to it as a creative form of user-generated content. Not only will you paint your brand in a positive, contemporary light, but you’ll gain a whole new audience through the artist’s individual following.
Bring Your Brand to Life Offline
Cultivating brand awareness is one of the most important steps any business can take. Without brand awareness, the relationship a brand shares with its consumers is likely to fall flat. And while digital marketing efforts are certainly advantageous in this day and age, there is more than one method to try when connecting with customers.
Embracing physical marketing doesn’t mean letting go of digital marketing—it simply means diversifying your approach and widening your organic reach.
People do spend a lot of time online. But fortunately, there’s still plenty of activity going on in the physical world, and that’s not likely to change anytime soon. By leaning into both physical and digital marketing methods simultaneously, your brand can have the best of both worlds.