With the advent of online marketing, offline branding became a thing of the past. Companies saw the opportunity to target a larger group of people through online marketing and grabbed it.
But did it really work out?
Have they been able to completely ditch offline branding and survive only by online marketing?
The answer is no.
Though strategies such as Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Search Engine Marketing (SEM), Content Marketing, Social Media Marketing (SMM), Pay-per-click Advertising (PPC), Affiliate Marketing and E-mail Marketing provided companies with the opportunity to market their products to larger masses, the companies soon found out that they were not as effective without offline branding.
Offline branding was the foundation of online marketing.
The major idea behind online marketing was the concept of backlinks. If a site had maximum number of backlinks, it moved up on the ranking scale and appeared on the first page of searches. But soon, it was found that companies misused this idea and branding was considered to provide ranking to a website. Thus ‘Brand Searches’ came into picture.
Nowadays, Google ranking is based in brand searches,
i.e. if people search for your company or brand on Google, then they are interested in what you provide. Google believes that if people have shown interest in your brand and if your site has quality content, then you deserve to be on top of the search page.
So higher number of brand searches gain you a higher ranking. This has brought back offline branding in the marketing strategies. When online marketing and offline branding is done together, the results gained are much better when compared to choosing one over the other.
Offline Branding and SEO:
- Offline Branding leads People to your Website
When you are popular, people will look up your profile on social media and surely visit your website. So you need to be more approachable to people so they know you better.
- Building connections
You need to connect with people on a larger scale to gain more social following. Engage in community talks, seminars, etc so that people may know you and understand your ideas. When a responsible person comes up and speaks for the company, people’s trust increases and they will be more curious about your next product launches. This way, you will gain a larger social media follower base.
2. Take part in product exhibitions, conferences and trade events
Exhibitions, conferences and trade events are perfect place to market your products. You can distribute flyers and business cards with prospective buyers of your products. You also get to meet other industry leaders.
3. Become a speaker
When you stand in front of a crowd and engage in conversation, it puts in a higher position. People listen to you when you speak about your brand. You have an opportunity to market your brand to the targeted audience.
4. Warm calling and cold calling
Calls are a means of personalized communication. Previously, cold calling was used to sell goods to buyers. A call was placed to anyone in an attempt to convince them to buy their product. This was not a good way of marketing. Warm calling, on the other hand, is placing calls to prospective clients who were already in contact with you. There is a higher possibility of convincing them to buy your products by placing warm calls.
5. Live demonstration of product usage and consultations
When people have already seen the product and have a first-hand experience at using it, they tend to be more open towards using other products from the same brand. They look up on the website for more of your products.
When you have built a strong public profile, it automatically strengthens your social media profile. Your brand searches increase and hence your Google ranking too. Hence don’t just look at strengthening your online marketing strategies; concentrate on offline branding too.
Learn from the large scale businesses that have not given up their offline branding. If you look around, the companies that have been in business for more than three to four decades have kept up their offline branding as strong as it was earlier.
Though they have also taken up online marketing, you can also see them in television and radio advertisements, public meetings and exhibitions, banners and various other offline media. They have successfully coordinated offline branding with online marketing.
- Make sure that your Offline Branding is supporting your Online Marketing
- Concentrate on the URL
Ensure that your URL is spelt properly in your billboards, cut-outs, television ads and any other form of offline branding so that people will remember it.
- Match your keywords
Any printed advertisement should contain words that are the keywords used in your website. This will make it easier for people to land up on your website during searches.
- Collaborate your offline ads and website content
Any content you use in television commercial or printouts should be found in your website. Videos aired in commercials should also be hosted on your website and other online media.
Though online marketing took over offline branding at a time, offline branding has not lost its essence. If done correctly, offline branding can bring you higher sales. With creative ideas, you can use both offline branding and online marketing to your advantage.
Offline branding does have a place in SEO!