When you market your business, there are a number of goals you are trying to accomplish: building name recognition, branding, acquiring more customers, and developing goodwill. However, in order to be successful in these endeavors, you need to think about your customers before you prepare your marketing materials. Know Your Client or Customer Who is your client or customer? Are they conservative, wealthy, and classy? Or do you cater to people who are outgoing with a sense of humor? Your customer will dictate the theme for your marketing materials. You wouldn’t want to turn away the discerning customer with fluffy and cheesy brochures. Rather, choose colors and wording that appeal to their sense of class and style. Printed Literature What do you want to say to your customers? How do you sell your business to them? As in the example above, your target customer will dictate the color, tone and theme of your literature. The size of your printed marketing materials may be determined by your customer. If you sell complicated services, a booklet may be a better choice than a one-page brochure. Always make sure your printed marketing materials are tailored to your customer base. Promotional Gifts A great way to brand and promote your business name is by giving promotional gifts as marketing materials. Pens, coffee cups, T-shirts, all these and other ideas make great promotional gifts. However, consider to whom you give them. A colorful rainbow pen may be great to promote a kids play arena, but not for a serious attorney. The attorney may consider, however, giving an executive desk accessory to clients, or an environmental firm may design and give away eco-friendly items, such as recycled paper notepads or recycled plastic travel mugs. Do Not Offend When you design your marketing materials for your target customer, be sure to avoid anything that could offend them. For instance, even 30 years ago, most businesses could get away with giving away matchbooks with their name and logo. However, in the 21st century, smoking has become quite taboo for a majority of Americans. Be sure to think twice about marketing materials with controversial subjects. Promotional and marketing materials are important for businesses to get name recognition and advertising. However, don’t let your personal tastes and ideas get in the way of designing marketing materials targeted specifically for your customers.