I have been perusing the forum here and there for the past few weeks and have found a great deal of insight and advice thus far. I am ready to take the plunge into the Think Tank, so thanks for having me.
In terms of marketing for our shop, thus far we have done little in the way of print marketing. We have been featured in the news paper, sponsored sports teams, ran ads on a local radio station and walked menu’s around to surrounding businesses only (as we are in a downtown area of a town). We are ready to begin a print marketing campaign of some sort and would like to hear what everyone else on the board has had success with. I’ve looked into using CFM Concepts and having them design and print our menus and then using the USPS EDDM program to mail them out as it is cheaper then using MailWise, the mail house the CFM uses. However, I am having a little stocker shock when it comes to them.
My questions are:
In terms of print marketing, what have you found to be the highest return on investment (mailing menus, box toppers, door hangers, flyers, post cards, customer loyalty cards, etc)?
What companies do you recommend for print marketing? We do not have artwork already and would need someone to create that for us.
Thank you in advance for all your suggestions and advice, I look forward to hearing from you all!
First of all, boxtoppers give you a phenomenal return on investment. Use them with EVERY order starting TODAY. The few cents to include a menu with every order is well worth it. Doorhangers also work well in my market where we have tons of apartment complexes. The labor cost to distribute the is a bigger expense than the purchase price. As far as companies, CFM produces awesome artwork and a very high quality finished product. I also use Century Printing (www.centuryprinting.com[/url]) as well as Magpac([url=http://www.magpac.com]www.magpac.com) for boxtoppers and mailers. As far as sticker shock, welcome to direct mailing. It’s expensive. Most of my advertising money goes towards shared mailings like coupon books and such where the cost per piece is a couple cents as opposed to 20 to 30 cents each. I do some single piece mailings but the expense keeps it from being a huge part of my marketing budget. Hope this helps and welcome to the think tank.
Do not overlook the coupon books sold by schools as fundraisers. They are free to advertise in, at least the ones I use are free. People pay $10 or $20 for a book, they are going to use coupons in them. An added bonus is that you are seen as supporting the school and the offers I put in them are not much different than what I would mail. When these books hit we see anywhere from 3 to 10 coupons a day at $0 cost to put them in customers hands. It is not huge, but it has brought in several regular customers that in the past used big three for pizza. Did I mention it is free?
The one the schools here have been using lately is “Enjoy The City”
Speaking from the consumer side of things… I agree a box topper gets saved for the menu use. I agree a magnet is great for easy number location… if you are at home. Personally I hate door hangers… they tend to blow away or my daughter runs and grabs it and it ends up in the yard or her playhouse. That’s just me. Hands down the most used coupon is that school coupon book. I am not sure why but everyone seems to use the coupons in the books. I think they relate the use of the book with further support for the school system. Its like buying food products with the “BOXTOP” lables on them. Last year my daughters school… with only 165 students age preschool - 5th… the school collected over $10000 in boxtops. Once we told friends and family… they just poured in. They added 3 new whiteboards with projectors. Ok…back to topic… actually…what about a pizza “boxtop” type promotion. Not needing to have it printed on the box… but something like the McDonalds Monopoly game pieces that are just a sticker with the two peel off game pieces. Have some food prizes under some stickers and then offer discounts based on the number that you order. A loyalty program that is controlled by the customer. Say… collect 12 game pieces and get a free pizza or half off… whatever you want too offer. What does everyone think?
My wife goes out of her way to spend extra money on name brands that sport a Box Top thingy. I suggested that instead we buy the generic without one, note the price difference and then cut a donation check for half the savings to the school. We’d both come out waaaay ahead. She just gave me that “you stupid man” look.
Off topic I know, but I’m thinking about printing my own version on my pizza boxes and offer $.XX for each one the school/teacher turns back into us. My main competitor does this with a “proof of purchase” (and after seeing how well the concept works in my own life) and I think it’s pure genius.
Brad I agree you pay more for the boxtop brands… you are paying for the 10 cents per top… but they have specials with matching donations and our local grocery store chain had an event last year that at check out…if you had 10 boxtop items…they gave a coupon for 100 boxtops to turn into the schools. The kids also love finding them on items. My 4 year old reminds me daily about cutting them off and putting them into our boxtop baggie. Yes a check would be much easier… but we all would get that same sigh… I think I just heard your wife talking to mine! :roll:
As far as print marketing goes, I feel you need to have a good mix of all of the ones you mentioned except maybe loyalty cards. I’ve never really had much success with them. Door hangers are the cheapest to distribute but the key to having success with them is consistency. You really need to get them out week after week on a consistent basis. From my experience that has always been the hard part for me.