Advertising & Marketing

Hit The Streets: Door-to-Door Marketing Tips to Increase Brand Awareness

Are you a wallflower in your industry? Do people pass your business by, not knowing you’re there? The personal connections that can be made in your community through door-to-door marketing cannot be understated, and many local businesses can seriously benefit from hitting the streets in their local community. Want to try it for your business? Here are our best tips that will literally open doors for your business. 

Know Your Local Soliciting Laws

Door-to-door marketing has become more difficult as many HOA’s, apartments, and gated communities put in “no soliciting” policies. Even if you’re not directly trying sell at the door, door-to-door marketing can often fall under soliciting. So, before you print out your pamphlets and hit the streets, make sure you take the time to look into what areas are available for solicitation. Call up HOA’s reps and apartment building owners, take a walk around the neighborhoods to note where the “no soliciting” signs are, and even consider speaking to local government offices to ask what is technically considered soliciting in that area. Be aware, even just quietly leaving flyers at the door can count as soliciting in many areas. 

So, what can you do for those “no soliciting” areas? You can: 

  • Leave your flyers inside mailboxes
  • Ask HOA reps for special permission to post flyers
  • Put up posters in public posting places
  • Get permission to set up a promo stand in a local park
  • Solicit during parades and other local events

Pro tip: You can also draw the customers to you by getting permission from someone in the area, or a nearby public park, to throw a little promotional party! Add some loud music (check the local noise regulations,) free BBQ or hot chocolate (depending on the season,) and promote through genuine social connections. 

Who Can Benefit From Door-to-Door Marketing?

While any business can benefit from an increase in local visibility, some businesses are more suited than others for taking their marketing physically to their customers. Here are just a few examples of small businesses that benefit most from door-to-door marketing and what they can do: 

Real Estate: The real estate industry is HOT right now, between people selling to cash in on high market prices to the first-time buyers desperate to get out of the renting game, now is an important time to get your business known in your community. Giveaways like house shaped magnets and house shaped keychains can be easily distributed at the door or left in mailboxes for promotions that will stick around. 

Local Restaurants: Have lots of houses nearby but not much foot traffic? Take some coupons and show your community that good food is just right around the corner! Customers love a good deal, and once they realize they have the perfect place to eat so close to home, you’ll see a lot more regulars coming in. 

Landscaping: Once you hit the streets, you can often tell what customers need you the most just by walking by their house! Dead lawns, dying trees, underutilized yard space, and broken fencing are all signs of a home in need of help that you can see from the street. Grab some giveaways and coupons, load up the car, and take a drive around to find hot spots of customers in need. 

Home Improvement: Know some local areas that are full of older houses, or even new builds in need of some finished basements? Don’t just wait for them to find you, get your flyers and magnet giveaways and knock on some doors!  

Pro tip: Didn’t see your industry in this list? It’s not comprehensive, but the rule of thumb is that if your main target customer base is in a specific, small geographic area, and they don’t know where you are, you can benefit your business by getting the word out one door at a time. 

Pamphlets, Papers, and More

When you’re passing out pamphlets, flyers, and door hangers, make sure you’re making the most of your space without turning it into a novel on a napkin. Here are some keys to making effective flyers for your business: 

  • Focus Your Headline: What are you trying to promote? A sale? A special feature? An event? Put that front and center where it can be read and absorbed in a glance.
  • Keep It Brief: Got a lot to say but not much space? Give a brief description then direct them to your website. Use a QR code or a short link that can be easily typed, otherwise they won’t bother.
  • Get Visual: Don’t leave customers with a block of text; add a picture! Flaunt some company colors! Something simple yet beautiful is what will make the difference between pinned to the fridge or tossed in the trash. Look up other professional flyers for inspiration.
  • Make It Relevant: Are you putting up flyers every other week? Stop that. Nobody will read them after the second or third round. Save your budget for promoting events, giveaways, major sales, or other noteworthy changes that customers genuinely would want to know about.

Pro tip: On behalf of your customers, please get help to design your flyers. If you have no design experience, even just sitting down with an artsy friend will make a big difference for how your flyer comes across to customers. 

Give Them Something They’ll Keep

While flyers, business cards, and brochures are an essential way to share information about your business, we all know most people won’t keep that flyer around long after they read it. If you really want your message to stick, give your customers something they’ll keep so they remember who you are when the time comes that they need your goods and services: 

Promotional Magnets 

Get your name on your customers’ refrigerator with your own custom magnets! Better than a business card and easy to customize with essential information, these handy giveaways ensure your information is close at hand when your customers need it most. You can also choose a magnet shape that matches your industry with products or opt for a traditional shape like this Business Card Magnet

Branded Pens 

A fancy pen is a great giveaway for any door-to-door marketing campaign. Pens like this Custom Metallic Soft Touch Pen are full of features that make a go-to favorite pen for customers to use at home and work while also keeping your business logo and info in plain view. Long after your flyer has been lost, your pens will remind customers every day of the lovely interaction they had with your business. 

Custom Notepads 

Stay top of mind after every personal reminder, grocery list, and doodle your customers make on your own custom notepads! Compact and convenient notepads like this Souvenir® 4″ x 6″ Scratch Pad 25 Sheet will be used again and again by your customers, and potentially even make it to the coveted purse pocket to be used on the go! Easy to carry and share at the door, notepads are a great giveaway to leave your future customers with. 

Make the Right Impression

Whoever is knocking on doors, make sure they look the part! Customers don’t want to be solicited by a stranger in a hoodie, outfit your representatives with a uniform look that people can trust. Having that uniform look creates a sense of authority as well that whoever they are speaking to is a true professional in their field, and not some random seasonal employee looking for a quick buck. Here are some basics that every company should be using for door-to-door marketing: 

Promotional T-shirts 

There’s no need to send every representative out into the heat in a suit and tie to make a good impression. All you need to look professional is a clean shirt custom made to represent your business. Shirts like the Gildan Performance® Adult 5 oz. T-Shirt are perfect for door-to-door work thanks to its moisture-wicking, antimicrobial, and snag-resistant fabric. 

Custom Branded Hats 

Employees walking long hours in the sun should be wearing a hat to keep the sun off their face anyway, so why not make that hat work for your brand? Hats like this Good Value™ Front Runner Cap not only feel and look good, but they put forward a professional appearance to customers who otherwise might be nervous about answering their door for a stranger.  

Going door-to-door to market your business can seem old-fashioned to some, but the truth is that it is a very powerful way to make connections with future customers. Don’t rely solely on the internet to get your name out there. If you know where your customers are, if your local community is primed for your business, hit the streets and tell them you’re here!  

Katie Yelisetti

From marketing tips to product recommendations, I’m here to help small businesses be their best.

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