Your marketing checklist

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Critical marketing elements are key to making your business thrive and continue to grow over the coming years reveals Melissa Haywood.

Years of planning and careful consideration goes into starting any small business. Every aspect leading up to a launch date is not to be overlooked including designing the perfect marketing materials that effectively reflect your brand.

Haywood says: “Marketing essentials are universal as they ground themselves in the core ways a small business connects with their targeted audience. Designing and creating the perfect materials are vital for your business to prosper in the marketplace.”

Here are tips for designing marketing materials:

  1. Logo: As much as everyone is hoping to create the famed Nike tick, you need to view the logo as a storytelling opportunity because it is essentially the first impression for a customer. Logos communicate your brand identity so the initial steps in creating one are by discovering your brand values, voice, and unique brand attributes. You need to view the logo as a storytelling opportunity because it is essentially the first impression for a customer. If you want to be taken seriously, use a professional.

Logos are a key pillar of your business’s brand development. It sits on your website, your signature, business cards, products, stationery, and the list goes on. A logo needs to look professional and have an everlasting and powerful impact. Use a maximum of three colours and pick these based on the mood you want to create and don’t be clichéd with symbols.

  1. Signage: Catch the eyes of your potential customers! Whether it be for an office, event or market stall, signage is an effective way to get your message across and attract attention. It is important to consider the following questions; Will this sign will be used indoors or outside? If it is going to be used outside, how long are you going to be leaving it there? Will it need to withstand certain wind conditions? Will it need to stay out in the rain, or do you plan to bring it indoors overnight? Whether you are using this inside or out, how durable do you need this to be? In an ideal world, how long would you want this product to last? Are you going to bring it with you to multiple trade shows across the country, for example, or will you just be using it once or twice for a special occasion? As you’re looking for a specific product to meet your signage needs, it is very important to keep the answers to these questions in mind as you shop.

Designing the perfect sign should include: using a big and bold font, writing a simple message with a large enough font size to reach your expected audience, creating a contrast to make your sign eye-catching, and actually identify what substrate is best for your images.

  1. Business Cards: Look professional, build trust and set your company apart from others in your field. Your business card says a lot about you and your company. Your design should communicate your values, distinguish your business from the competition, and encourage people to get back in touch.

It is important to choose an appropriate size and shape creating a design that fits you. This not only influences the text size and amount of information you can include but also communicates things like whether you’re conventional or a bold non-conformist.

Be sure to add a special touch whether you include embossing, raised print, metallic finishes or choose a catchy card shape, your customers will notice the difference and your card will stand out.

Finally, ensure your contact details are easy to follow – the way your information is laid out is an important consideration. Don’t forget to proof thoroughly for typos!

  1. Brochures: Brochures are a perfect choice for saying more about your business. Whether you’re looking to offer more detailed information about your services, use it as a menu, or simply make more of a connection with customers, a brochure gives you the space to tell your story.

Even though it’s made from a single piece of paper, a brochure is one of the most flexible marketing tools a small business owner can use. It can introduce your potential customer to your business as a whole, showcase specific products, or communicate other important information about your business. Brochures can even be segmented for specific audiences, giving you the chance to offer every potential customer a message that speaks to them. The aim is to create a great-looking print asset that can demonstrate your offering at a trade show, at your office, in the mail, or on the road. Just remember, simplicity is better – keep your language clear, concise and to-the-point.  n

* As the Head of Vistaprint Australia, Melissa Haywood applies her passion for helping Australians grow their businesses to the world of customised products.

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