Remember the great outdoors? You know, that sweltering place just outside of your air-conditioned home, car, or office. The place where there are lush green lawns, (or burnt up amber & brown lawns,) big trees, blue skies, animals, nature, and such. Look away from your mobile phone. Put down the tablet. Close the laptop. Look outside. Ahh there it is, the world around you – just like you remember it or saw on Pinterest.
Yes, there is a big world out there beyond the comfy confines of the indoors. In spite of the sweltering heat of summer, the great outdoors can be an excellent place to market your business. Here are a few ideas on how you can go beyond the boredom of the board room, beyond the soft glow of the computer screen and take your brand outside.
Billboards: You see them along interstate highways, major thoroughfares, and spread across cities. Billboards are not a new concept, but they can be an effective way to draw attention to your brand. Launching a new product? Expanding to a new location? Selling something unique for the holidays? Billboards are a great way to reach large numbers of people with a concise message and a compelling call to action. What is new about billboards is that many of them are now digital, enabling you to test and measure messages, run a greater variety of time-sensitive messages, interact with customers more quickly, and be far more creative with the space provided. Whether digital or vinyl, billboards are a great way to take it outside.
Vehicle Wraps: What’s better than a billboard alongside the highway? How about one that is on the highway, the bi-way, and potentially any street or thoroughfare in town. Vehicle wrapping is an inexpensive way to showcase your brand by wrapping it around an automobile. The costs of vehicle wraps have come down in recent years and the capabilities of what can be done continue to improve. Do your neighbors know where you work or what your business does? With a vehicle wrap, they could and so could all of those other people who are stuck in traffic with you each and every day on the commute to work. Caution – those with extreme road rage may want to opt out of this form of marketing. Flipping someone the bird and running them off the road is not what I would call a solid marketing strategy. Just my 2 cents.
Exterior Building Signage: Is your brand represented on the outside of your building? Your building is a great place to market your brand, and yet many businesses fail to effectively do so. Does the logo on your sign match the on your business cards or website? Can people passing by easily see your signage? Is it visible from multiple directions or perspectives? Take the time to check out your signs and make sure that this outdoor element is serving to drive people in.
Murals: Have an exterior wall that needs a paint job? How about enlisting an artist to create a mural for your building? The mural could showcase your approach to service, your product selection, your company history, your involvement in the community, or any number of other things. Best of all you can take pictures of your extreme wall makeover and publish before, during, and after photos to the web – extending the reach of your project. You can feed a starving artist, improve your community, and market your brand all at once.
Event Sponsorship: This weekend is The Epilepsy Foundation of Western Ohio’s annual Mud Volleyball tournament – an event which The Ohlmann Group is proud to sponsor. Events can provide you with an opportunity to show off your brand in a positive light in front of large outdoor audiences. Sponsoring an event is typically very affordable and most not for profit organizations will allow you to be creative with what you can do in exchange for your sponsorship cash. Events provide people with memorable experiences, and can introduce brands to new audiences and create positive experiences for people.
Event Participation: Like event sponsorship, event participation is a great way to take your brand outside. From sponsoring a cycling team or a local youth soccer league to putting together a marathon relay team from members of your organization, there are countless affordable ways to get your brand out there. This is a great way to integrate a hobby or community interest with the need to market your business.
Promotional Items: In sprite of the hot, hot, heat, we still love to get out and toss around frisbees and balls while chugging gallons of our favorite beverages from water bottles and coozy covered cans. Why not take advantage of the opportunity to make your brand a little more playful by investing in some outdoor promotional items to pass out to customers, family members and friends. Heck give them a dry fit t-shirt or a hat to help them feel and look a little cooler out there.
In The Air: Another place to showcase your brand is in the sky. I see dozens of hot air balloons dotting the Southwestern Ohio sky each evening, all of them adorned with a company logo. These slow moving tourist attractions are a great way to expose your brand to a broad audience of earthbound humans looking up to see just what’s up there in the sky. Another option that seems to be making a comeback is banners tied to airplanes. While extremely popular in the 70’s and 80’s, this option has faded from and now returned into view. Last weekend I saw a political candidate using this method to get out the vote. (Believe me when I tell you they really are buying up all the media they can this year.) While this one is not for everybody, it is yet another way to take your brand outside.
Motion Graphics: Ok so you made it this far and you’re saying these are great little ideas, but I want to go big. Well, consider using motion graphics projected onto your building. This is an emerging art that has the ability to really wow people. Imagine turning an entire building into a moving canvas for your business. If you have the budget, the building, and a big idea, motion graphics are an amazing way to take it outside in style.
The great outdoors awaits you. So get creative and take your brand outside for a little fresh air and excitement. How are you exploring marketing in the great outdoors?
Looking for help with marketing your business in the great outdoors? From buying outdoor media to thinking up ideas as big as the summer sky, The Ohlmann Group would love to help you. Contact us to set up a meeting at our office, your office, a coffee shop or even better outside somewhere.