Many online businesses take for granted the power of traditional offline advertising, believing that the revolutionary resources of the Internet are all they will ever need. However, offline media such as newspapers and magazines still play integral parts in people’s daily lives. Therefore, they still provide unlimited promotional opportunities even for businesses that operate primarily through the web.
Newspapers are still very much viable and in some instances more effective than online advertising. Although recent reports show that people increasingly prefer to read their news online, conventional paper-based newspapers still maintain prominence as primary content sources. Given that not all residences have permanent Internet connections while most households have ready access to the daily editions of several local and national papers, it is not difficult to imagine how advertising your online business in your local paper has the potential to reach a wider base of prospective customers.
“Content is king” is the truism by which all websites manage their businesses, conveniently forgetting that this has always been true for offline media as well—long before the Internet was even born. Many offline publications accept contributions from independent writers in exchange for an ad space, as a feature of the publication, or even as a way for freelancers to earn. Submitting a press release, a well-written feature article encompassing your business niche or products, and the like will guarantee a significant source of visitors to your online business.
A more direct and less costly method of offline advertising is with flyers, posters, and business cards that are distributed to the public. Create simple but professional-looking flyers and distribute them on the streets, in markets, parks, and other areas where there are no legal restrictions. Put up posters in equally unrestricted places. Give business cards to your friends, family, and associates for them to use or give away.
Business cards in particular are widely accepted as a professional means of introducing or providing essential information about your business. In the world of business, they are ubiquitous and time-honored devices.
If you are willing to spend more, then television and radio advertising are also guaranteed ways of providing customer recognition to your web-based business. Radio reaches far and deep into communities with news, music, and forum programs. Watching television is still the biggest pastime. Advertising with these mediums, if you can handle the costs, will lead to more profits than if you only rely on web resources.
Finally, do not forget the potent promotional power of your own speech. In this technologically driven time, we often forget that word-of-mouth, coming from a reliable source, is enough for someone to be hooked on the products or services you offer.