Web-to-print marketing via distributors

05/04/2011

It would be an obvious choice to cut the middleman out and go directly to consumers with your web to print offer. After all, this is what you bought it for.  Think again.

Web to print on it’s own is worth only as much as it saves you on prepress work. It doesn’t sell anything for you, on the contrary to what web to print vendors want you to believe. So, you need to market it. Can you? Really?

Niche web-to-print

Not everyone is good at sales or marketing. Many of us would rather cut code or run a press. This is where the middleman comes in.

Let the middleman market it for you. Take for example the “bridezilla“. They ain’t ordering no invitations online. They go to a wedding consultant or some other agency. Then the consultant would handle the ordering.

Forget about marketing directly to “-zillas”. Target wedding agencies instead. Offer them something exclusive. Hide your beautiful web-to-print wedding invitations behind login and password and make them available to the agencies only.You still benefit from someone promoting your service and using an interface that saves you money on pre-press.

Offline marketing for online service

Search engine marketing is a zero sum game. Are you good at it? The chance is you ain’t, but it’s not the end of the world.

An alternative strategy for our bridezilla example would be investing your marketing budget in beautifully done samples and freebies to

  • get wedding consultants on board
  • or establish a special relationship with a wedding publication
  • or find an ambassador in a celebrity.

Then, as it happens, you can feed the news back to the online world and get links helping you grow traffic organically.

You simply get more for the same amount of money. It’s not just about being #1 in Google.

Letterpress – deserves a personal touch

One of niche products that may be a hard sell online. You need to hold it in your hand to appreciate it. Photos via Flickr.

Apple Letterpress Tree CardApple Letterpress Tree CardApple Letterpress Tree Card

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