It’s something that screams “you.” One look — and you’ve got their attention. Customized items are a bit like your business’ fashion statement: something that sets you apart from the crowd. But they’re also something that needs to convey important information about your business. You may have hesitated to order personalized items because of budget issues. When just starting out, it’s hard to decide what you have less of: time or money. However, whether you’re starting a business with a hundred employees or running a small business entirely out of your home, take the time to spread your brand with a few affordable things you can customize.
Mail is a large part of how you reach out to potential customers, whether you ship products directly or not. For example, you may send out advertisements introducing your new business or highlighting a sale or new product. You may simply send out invoices. Personalize shipping labels, complete with your business logo or even a product image, for some extra marketing.
Over time, as you build brand awareness, your customers will be able to tell they’ve got mail from your business at a glance. Labels personalized beyond the standard business name and address help your mail stand out.
Do you need business cards in this day and age? Maybe you operate most of your business online, or even if you do meet customers in person, you think telling them about your business’s social media accounts has replaced handing out a business card. As Creative Overflow explains, the need for business cards will likely never be eradicated by the digital age.
A business card not only gives your business an air of legitimacy that a simple “find us online” message won’t, but it’s a fun way to get attention and make a statement. Gone are the days of those boring, black-and-white business cards. Personalize your business cards with colorful designs representative of what you sell. Include all that social media contact information, as well as your website, address and phone number — but don’t skip the business cards even if you operate online. You’ll pass them out to customers, potential investors and others in the industry.
Even if you run your business out of your home, there are a few things you can do to make your business seem more “professional,” more of a serious contender in the market — and personalizing your letterhead is one of them. You’ll be sending out a number of letters, to existing customers, potential customers and potential investors alike. The paper that you print your letters on should reflect your business, including contact information, your logo and an additional, relevant flourish. Even if you send more emails than traditional letters, transfer your personalized letterhead into your emails.
The label on your mail is one thing; people expect labels to be personalized with your business name and address at least. Personalize your stamps, and you get two places to advertise your business on the same package or letter.
Personalized stamps are officially offered by the USPS, and you can use shipping software to design, buy and print them easily. When deciding what to put on the stamps, think of a design or image that will grab the recipient’s attention — and maybe the mail carriers who see it along the way. Ideas include:
- Your business logo, especially if it’s particularly unique and colorful
- A picture of your latest product offering
- An image related to a service you provide; for example, if you clean houses, an image of you at work
- A graphic teasing an upcoming product release
- A graphic advertising a sale
What seems like a superfluous investment at the start of your business can make a significant impact on the long-term success of your business. Among markets crowded with other start-ups, you need to convey your business is professional, different and eager to impress. Personalized things like shipping labels and letterhead will help you do that, and they don’t cost as much as you think.
About the Author
Melanie Eckstrom is a writer and small-business owner.