With so many digital marketing tools available, it’s easy to forget that our customers are out there in the real world. Especially since online efforts are easier to measure than ‘traditional’ marketing tactics.
But savvy marketers know that offline and online marketing aren’t mutually exclusive. Each channel feeds into the other as we move through the buying journey.
Channel hopping continues even after we become customers. Whether it’s a tweet to customer services, or a ‘#humblebrag’ on Instagram, the conversation isn’t over when we make a purchase.
As smartphones start to feel like extensions of our bodies, you could argue that we’re never really offline. Most of us have social media, augmented reality and - dare I say it - QR code readers at our fingertips. With these tools, marketers can use physical experiences to drive online engagement.
Here, we’ll take lessons from the brands who have done just that.
#1 Building brand awareness with experiences
Offline experiences don’t just drive brand awareness. They also have the power to drive online conversions – whether that’s starting a conversation, downloading an app, or making a purchase.
During a three-day scavenger hunt, the brand 'hid' three giant backpacks around London, sharing clues to their whereabouts on its social media channels. On each inflatable backpack, there was a QR code which participants could scan to enter into a lottery for a £5000 prize.
The campaign did wonders for brand awareness, which translated into real-world sales. Web traffic to the brand’s ecommerce site skyrocketed by 80 percent, with a 95 percent increase in bag sales. Sales at the brand’s flagship physical store also shot up.
This campaign is a perfect example of diverse channels working together. Fans were notified of the campaign via social media, took part in a physical experience, amplified the message through their own social networks, and went on to make physical and digital purchases.
#2 Networking across channels
B2B marketing has a reputation for lagging behind B2C in terms of technology. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
LinkedIn has long recognised the potential of turning offline interactions into online connections. The networking site gives each user a unique QR code that they can share as an alternative to exchanging business cards.
But it’s not time to ditch business cards just yet. A printed card is a great opportunity to show what your brand is about. It can also be handed over quickly with no need to take out a device.
So why not add a QR code to your business cards, to further bridge the gap between offline and online? You can even skip LinkedIn altogether and give new contacts the opportunity to send you a voice message directly. This gives prospects the personal touch of a phone call, while allowing your team to respond at a convenient time.
#3 Adding value to purchased products
The customer journey doesn’t end when someone buys a product. Digital media can be used to bring users back online, or even recruit a new audience.
Take Spotify Codes as an example. These increase app usage by making it easier to share music with friends. Your bestie just has to show you the special song code – a bit like a barcode – for you to scan and start listening. The same codes can be used by artists to promote their work through offline channels.
Creative greeting card designers have been making the most of this feature to enhance their own service. Customers can send personalised cards, with codes linking to a special song. To listen, the recipient just has to scan the code with their phone.
Let’s take the idea a step further. Using similar technology, greeting cards vendors could help you send loved ones a pre-recorded voice message. Much more personal than a song, right?
#4 Getting customers talking
Loyal customers aren’t just your best marketers. They can also provide valuable insights into your products and services.
Customers are more likely to interact when they feel engaged - so it’s a good idea to ask for feedback during an event, or while they eagerly unbox your product.
Cosmetics brand Glossier is a firm favourite among millennials thanks to its digital roots and engaging content. It’s also renowned for its Instagrammable packaging.
Deliveries come in the brand’s signature pink, along with a helpful makeup pouch and cool stickers. By creating an instantly recognisable, visually pleasing experience, the D2C giant encourages customers to share their unboxing experience online.
This is a brand that knows the value of joined-up channels. Product designers learn from two-way conversations with fans who, in turn, get a customer experience worth sharing.
Luckily, you don’t need the world’s sexiest packaging to get customers talking. A strategically placed QR code can proactively nudge customers to share their thoughts. This could be in the form of anonymous feedback, or user generated content to share with your community - it’s entirely up to you and your audience.
Giving customers a voice
The above examples span a range of industries, and each focuses on a different stage of the customer journey. But they do have one thing in common.
By joining up offline and online marketing channels, these brands are offering customers new and engaging ways to express themselves - whether that’s through social media, sharing content with friends, or interacting with the brands they love.
Telbee’s aim is to help you interact with customers in the way that they want to be heard and spoken to. Voice messaging deepens engagement with your in-store visitors and users of your products, so that delivery doesn't have to mean the end of the conversation.
To find out how our voice messaging platform can supercharge your marketing efforts - by bringing more of your offline customers online - get in touch with Telbee today!