EarthLink Web Hosting customers can take advantage of several effective tools to promote their business websites online: EasySiteOptimizer and OneList for website SEO, Announcer Pro for email marketing, and Social Stream for social media marketing.
But don’t forget about marketing your business website offline. Just as online marketing can drive offline business, offline marketing out there in the real world can help support your online presence. Here are 15 ways to do it:
- Business Cards: Put your website URL and domain email address on your business cards. You may even be able to show a thumbnail screenshot of your website on the back side of the card (but make sure it looks OK at that reduced size before you print). There are even free business card options available.
- Other Printed Items: If you use letterhead or have brochures or other printed items related to your business, make sure your website address is displayed on them prominently and have a plan to distribute these items to promote your website.
- Office Signs: If you have a brick-and-mortar store or office that customers visit, use it as an opportunity to cross-promote your website. Ideally, include some motivation for customers to visit the site: an online-only offer, coupons, tips or other valuable information.
- Swag/Giveaways: Print your website address on pens, calendars, coffee mugs, and other low cost giveaways; you can also produce some more expensive items to use as contest prizes. Get some ideas for customized promotional merchandise.
- T-Shirts: This could be in the swag/giveaways category, but I’m breaking it out because this is one promotion you can do yourself by personally wearing your customized T-shirts (or other shirts, sweatshirts and jackets). It can be especially effective if you are wearing your shirt around likely customers.
- Event Sponsorship: Sponsor a local sporting event, school, festival, etc. Make sure you pick one that allows you to promote your website (maybe in an event program or by distributing your giveaways).
- Conferences & Conventions: Get out there and go to events like conferences that are relevant to your business. Be social, network, and have plenty of business cards and swag handy to give out to the people you meet.
- Teaching: Volunteer to teach a class/seminar at local library, school, or other community location. Ideally, get the venue to print your business website URL when they are promoting the event. And make sure you have business cards, brochures, giveaways, etc. available to distribute to those who attend.
- Vehicles: If you have a company car or truck with a logo and or phone number, you can promote your website address there too. Even if you don’t have a company vehicle, there are custom car decals, bumper stickers, and magnets that are easy to apply to your personal car. Or make a really big splash with a full car wrap. Get some vehicle marketing ideas here.
- Press Releases: You may need to hire a writer or PR service for this (and you may not get it picked up), but if you’re doing something new or exciting with your business, see if you can get the offline media to pick it up (if they do, you’ll get online promotion too). If you are writing a blog on your website, you may be able to repurpose a blog post for this.
- Local Newspapers & Magazines: See if you can get an article or opinion piece in a local publication. Make sure they print your name and website address with the article (a link to your website from the online version of the paper or magazine would be great for SEO too). Again, you may be able to repurpose a blog post for this.
- Coupons & Direct Mail: Depending on what you sell, a coupon or other small promotional ad distributed in something like a Valpak may help you promote your website offline. There are many other types of direct mail opportunities as well.
- Door Hangers: Print up door hangers and have them distributed in neighborhoods with your target customers (this is easiest and most cost-effective if your website caters to a local audience).
- Paid Advertising: You’d have to think about the ROI for this since it may be one of the costliest ideas, but some local radio or newspaper advertising may be cheap enough to make it work for you.
- Voicemail & Hold Music: If you have a voicemail system, include your website URL in the outgoing message. If your phone system plays hold music, add some website promotion into the mix.
As always, tell us what you’ve done to market your business website offline. We’d love to know what has worked.