Print media lived a long and glorious life, but it's time to say goodbye. 0805wileycartoon3Perhaps you remember a time when prestige was being featured in The Times or Vogue. Those names still hold merit, but circulation is down. The days of tuning into current events with a newspaper or magazine are over. With the growth of internet users coupled with the cost of producing printed materials, many popular publications have moved to the web or died. What does this mean to small business?

Optimize for Web

Now is a good time to take a good look at your marketing strategies and optimize them for the dominant media platform, the internet. Far too often, we see entities beginning to create a web presence, but fail to use it for what it is. We are not just moving our print media from paper to web page. With the birth and growth of the internet, print media is no longer restricted to a piece of paper and ink. This doesn't just shake things up for your marketing team, either. The internet is so versatile. It has also proved to be a more efficient platform for assets like internal training and even a supplementary aid in the hiring process. But more on those details later.

Social Media

You could still hold out for a spread in your most regarded publication, but AARP is the no. 1 magazine in business right now. That's a pretty niche demographic. We recommend assessing your web presence to make your brand look exceptionally professional and relevant. Facebook should be used to display your logo and give long form updates about your company--aim to do this bi-weekly. Twitter should be used to share in-the-moment, short form updates. Consequently, the more frequently you do this, the better the chance of creating a bond with your followers. Instagram is a tricky beast. Corporations and individuals have mastered the medium, but it can be a bit trickier for a small business. Screen Shot 2015-02-09 at 2.53.32 PMWe really admire Pake, a local Austin jewelry maker, for her Insta-presence. Her account is all about her product and customers. It's all very beautiful, but she's mastered continuity. Instagram is a pretty basic app, offering only square pictures and an optional caption. 'Grammars are more likely to be long-time followers of a business if they feel they can expect a level of consistency in the content. Obviously, your company's website is the most important part of the equation. Leave nothing out, but don't overload visitors with too much information in one place. Take a look at our Design category to read some of Velvet Cartel's design suggestions.

Think outside the [Paper] Box

Stop printing coupons, but keep making them. Since we've established that the circulation of printed media is down, your small business most likely will not get a good ROI with coupons. If invited to buy a block in a coupon book, opt for the digital version if available. Generate your own coupons. Circulate them in your email list or offer them on your shopping page. More new customers will make a first time purchase with a digital coupon than with a traditional, printed coupon. Check out the stats on digital v. traditional coupons from Knowledge Networks right HERE. One of the problems with print media is that it doesn't do much once you're gleaned information from it. Though ads in newspapers, magazines, coupon books and pamphlets are no longer worthy investments for a small business, circulating physical items can still be an effective way to draw in business. Visit VCmerch.com to find out more.

How VC Can Help

Here at Velvet Cartel, we want to see small business succeed. We study and hand-craft marketing solutions for clients, often relying on the internet to allow us the flexibility to create beyond the limits. To learn more about optimizing your brand across the web, send us and email at info@velvetcartel.com and visit our website at www.velvetcartel.com.

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