Have you ever been to a business and thought to yourself, I’m definitely coming back? A small clothing retailer might have helped you pick a new style, a comic book shop hosted an exciting event, or a bakery gave you an excellent discount on your morning muffin.
These are all examples of on-site marketing. While the name is similar to digital onsite marketing, which refers to advertising directly on your website, this is different. On-site Marketing is all about using your physical, brick-and-mortar space to inspire customer loyalty.
With many resources dedicated to online marketing, you might not realize all you can accomplish with what you have around you. But if you want to get more business, it’s time to pay attention to in-store opportunities. Here are six on-site marketing tactics you might not be taking advantage of:
1. Provide Free Samples and Discounts
Everyone loves free samples. Offering people a taste of your products is an effective way to prove their quality and showcase your goods to people who might not have otherwise considered them. Think of free samples staff members hand out in certain grocery stores — you probably wouldn’t have given some of those products a second thought when looking them on the shelves. And yet, because you got to experience them without making a purchase first, you changed your mind.
Offer your customers free samples and generous discounts when appropriate. Allowing people to buy your products for less money than they would normally pay builds good rapport and encourages word-of-mouth marketing. Too many free samples can be costly, so be conscious of your budget, but don’t be afraid to let people test your products before they decide to buy.
2. Host In-Person Events
Do you just want to get people through your doors? Your products and services might belong to a niche that’s challenging to describe, so people won’t know what you’re really about until they can see it for themselves.
Host an event at your office or business space to attract people. The event doesn’t need to be overly promotional — simply having people present is great exposure — but make sure guests have opportunities to browse your products or information about your services. Examples of events you can throw include networking opportunities, fundraising events, holiday parties, and conferences. The size of your space will influence what kind of events you can host, but getting involved in your community magnifies your brand’s local presence.
3. Offer a Customer Loyalty Program
Another effective way to encourage word-of-mouth marketing is a customer loyalty program. According to Yotpo, 52.3% of loyal customers will participate in a rewards program, so have one in place that incentivizes consumers to shop with you instead of other brands because they can earn discounts and other privileges for repeat purchases.
Keep an eye on what your competition is doing, too. Your customer service might be exceptional, but people will consider offers from other brands if they promise big enough savings. Set competitive prices and provide a comprehensive loyalty program that saves people more than cash, but gives them convenience and dependability.
4. Launch Contests and Sweepstakes
Similar to hosting events, launching a contest or sweepstakes can promote your brand to a broader audience. Nothing motivates people like a little competition.
You will likely need to leverage digital channels to spread the word about this unique marketing idea, but once people are aware of what you’re doing, you can host the event itself on your premises. Hold a raffle, host games, or ask your community to create content and judge the best submissions (such as photos, videos, artwork, or written pieces). Offer some of your products or service vouchers as prizes. The prospect of winning something incentivizes people to participate in your contest and increases the number of opportunities you have to advertise your merchandise or services.
5. Partner with Neighboring Businesses
People often appreciate a good two-for-one deal, even if it requires going to separate businesses — as long as they’re close together. Do you have a neighbor looking to tap into a new customer base? Offer discounts to their customers, and ask them to do the same for yours.
For example, if you run a bookstore and your neighbor is an ice cream shop, offer 10% off select books to people who come in with a receipt indicating they just purchased a single scoop in a cone. The promise of a discount encourages ice cream shop customers to come check you out even if they hadn’t originally planned on buying a book. Best of all, you don’t need to use digital marketing for people to take advantage of your partnership.
6. Use Digital Signage
Digital signage brings your business into the modern era. 65% of the population are visual learners, which means you need to leverage visual marketing as much as possible. Pictures, images, and videos might seem more at home and cost-effective online, but TV screens with digital signage software enable you to bring visual media into your brick-and-mortar location.
Use digital signage to share customer testimonials, link your social media feed, promote deals, and show demonstration videos. TV screens are eye-popping, so customize your signs to create attention-grabbing visuals that communicate important information that’s valuable to your customers.
Effective marketing tactics often require going online, but you have more options than you realize when it comes to marketing right where you are.