DT&G Business Department
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Promotion opportunities

with creative cards...

bookmarksMaking sure your customers know what services you offer will greatly increase your volume per purchase ratio. I've been told countless times that someone "didn't know you could do that." Folks, this is nothing but missed opportunity. Mama's arms ain't working if you don't stay in touch with these people.

Get your business name and your product offering into the marketplace by participating in events like health fairs, home shows, bridal fairs, and travel shows. Don't be afraid to offer a hand.

Be a good guy.

Look for nonprofit organizations who are already hosting a promotion. Wrap your promotion around theirs, and you'll get the added benefits of tagging along on their skirts. If you're not already a member of your chamber of commerce do it now. They've got the list and calendar for all those promos you're looking for. Target the organizations whose benefactors and members have deep pockets. The organization distributes your message for you!

Free distribution

Throughout your upcoming printing projects, take a look at the overall picture and ask yourself how you can integrate some of your own promo pieces into the job.
      If you're printing business cards for clients, or perhaps even yourself, try a few of these "extras" around the scrap on the press sheet. Then let a nonprofit organization put them into the hands of potential customers:
  1. Reminder cards - printed for the non-profit to send out and distribute for donations. Your name, and a kicker line printed there as the 'good guy sponsor.
  2. Bookmarks - are wonderful. They don't have to be much wider than 1.5 inches, but can carry a big story. Print vital information for the charity or nonprofit you're supporting, and make sure your name and specialty is included.
  3. Outreach Cards - almost all organizations are looking for members, volunteers or sponsors. How about a handy card that they can pass out letting people know about their organization, or how to get involved.
  4. Invitation Cards - Almost all organizations have meetings, or service events. How about a card that a member gives to a nonmember inviting them to a meeting?
Creative cards make friends

Problem/Benefit! Right?

  1. Helpful tips and hints - Almost all organizations have a tips collection. How about a book mark or telephone card that has these tips on a helpful reference card.
  2. Sports calendars - Your local high schools all have sporting events. How about a wallet card with the games schedule on it. Hey, a good way to put your name into the hands of every student's mom and dad!
  3. Car ID - give vital tips on calling for help, or first aid in case of an accident - provide the card for people to carry in their glove compartment. An added touch provides a place for their name, phone and persons to contact in case of an emergency. (These are nicer when they're laminated!)
The variations are limited only by your imagination. Go for it.

Piggy-back promos...

Here's one you can use for yourself, or you can peddle it to likely clients, and get the business producing the promotion. Or both.

Look for non-competing businesses who have parallel products or services, and approach them with a piggy-back promo idea. Chat with them and learn their experiences on what their customers want as well as their reasons for saying no. (You may even get some new insight into your own business.)
      The two, three or four businesses can now pool your money to pay for a promo that will work, possibly better than if you did it on your own.

The Block Party

A client of mine recently trucked around his block and incorporated the help of four other businesses to do a piggy-back promo they called a 'block party.' They were totally unrelated businesses so each enjoyed a bit of market overflow from the other.
      They shared the newspaper media and printing costs for hand-outs, which saved them 75%. College students were called in to distribute the handbills on the campuses of several local schools.
      Each of the businesses kicked in a prize for a drawing, and came up with some drastic sale prices on certain items. The real kicker was each business wrapped a discount or 'freebie' into the other's promotion. Sort of like... The whole idea is getting 'A's customers who might not normally go into 'B's store to go there to register, or pick up some other perk.

A simple letter-size hand bill was printed -- one side with an ad, and a map to the 'block' and the other side with four coupons to be redeemed at the stores.
      Across the bottom of the sheet was yet another coupon that was separated from the stack at the printer and held at each store for promo day. When a customer redeemed a coupon, they were given another coupon good for certain further discounts at any of the other stores. (Our subscribers will get full working templates for this promotion on their disk this month.) Don't forget, you can bump your press sheet size up to legal size and pick up a few inches of printing space at about the same price. Use this for printing bag stuffers. (see sidebar)
      This promotion can get into some real fun and profitability. Be creative, and always promote things that your targets will be looking for.


In another similar promotion, a pizza restaurant was involved and the coupon was a punch card that when punched by the other merchants, the holder got a free slice of pizza and a small drink! In return, the other merchants picked up the pizza parlor's media tab. This really worked because that word 'free' drove the shoppers into an obsession to get the cards punched. Variations abound... be creative.

The Template

The postcard grid
This shows several cards ganged onto a single work and turn press sheet. It illustrates printing a reply card for a business to send to existing customers after the project is done, a general post card where the owner hand-writes the note to the client, and two piggyback bookmarks.
      The printer prints the first side, then trims off the book marks -- turns the sheet over and prints the other side with the same plate! Presto -- lots of cards. All these come out of a single sheet of 110-pound index card stock which is very inexpensive to print at most any quick-print shop.

Don't forget about Valentines

You want a cool promotion that won't cost you much?

Take along a card everywhere you go from now until February 7th.

This is the "Wonderful Person's Nomination Card" -- give them away freely. Include them with billing. (Bagstuffer, perhaps?) Drop them at client offices, at school, at the mall, where ever you go. Fax them to the receptionists at all your clients' offices, vendors, etc. Encourages the holder to freely make copies of the card and distribute it to their co-workers with a hint to nominate them.

The card incourages the holder to vote for a person at their workplace who really deserves to be taken out for a first class evening on the town. They must return the cards for the drawing to select the winners of the night out.

Now, you go to work with a local restaurant or hotel who wants some real promo power, and get them to kick in a heafty discount on a group dinner. You print their logo and kicker on the cards. With this promo you'll have people all over town talking about your business.

You draw some names, (as many as you can afford,) then take them out for a nice dinner at your co-sponsor's expense!

Guess what: a golden follow up opportunity - a short fax or letter about the winners and the great evening they had, perhaps a snapshot. You can bet they'll be looking for that card next year!


The Business department of DT&G is for YOU! Please let us know what topics you'd like addressed ...and be sure to visit often, because updates and new articles will be posted as they're complete, and may appear before actual DT&G publication dates!

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