Dana on Marketing Messages: Promoting a New Service

The majority of printers aren’t great at self-promotion. Many still think that their sales reps handle the marketing responsibility. That’s just wrong.

For this month’s column, I decided to share some practical ideas about how to use content to promote a new service. The great thing is about this strategy is that much of the time you can write the bulk of the content once and slice and dice it in different “flavors” for appropriate formats.

Let’s say you’ve just added mailing and fulfillment capabilities. (I didn’t pick this at random, by the way. From research I’ve conducted over the past nine months, this is the #1 value-added service that print customers seek in a print provider.)

How would you promote it? Luckily, with so many digital channels available, you have a powerful smorgasbord of marketing media at your fingertips. Your goal is to share the news with your customers, as well as your prospects, so that they start sending this work your way.

But sharing the news is just the first step. After your initial announcement, you must convince your audience that you’re an expert in mailing and fulfillment. They need to know that you have the trained personnel, equipment, workflow and safeguards to handle their mailing and fulfillment needs. Your customers trust you as a printer. When you add a new capability, you have to prove you’re the best resource for that, as well.

This is where judicious use of content comes in. It’s not enough to blast out one e-mail, news release or postcard with a “We’re now offering mail and fulfillment services!” message. That alone won’t do anything.

I suggest you approach it like a pie: cut it up into manageable slices and dish it out one tasty slice at a time—and over time. Here are my suggestions for promoting your new service in eight ways.

Long regarded as a print buyer expert and trade writer, Margie Dana launched her new business in 2013 as a marketing communications strategist with a specialty in printing and print buying. Now she’s on a mission to help clients build customer communities through carefully crafted content.

You may know Margie as the producer of the annual Print & Media Conference. Although she’s exited the event production business, she’s still publishing her Print Tips newsletter. She looks forward to helping companies create and style all of their content so their potential customers sit up and take notice. For details and to sign up for her Print Tips and new marketing blog, visit www.margiedana.com or e-mail Margie at margie@margiedana.com.
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