Small business uses Google Maps to construct customer list

Imagine constructing a recipient list for your next printing and mailing initiative by leveraging mapping tools such as Google Earth. While not all businesses' products and services could benefit from the visual information this tool provides, it is just another way companies are combining traditional marketing methods with new technologies.

In a recent article for Technorati, writer Alan Blume describes how one day he received a letter from a local swimming pool company inquiring whether his pool needed servicing or care. However, this wasn't what caught his attention.

The letter began: "We noticed your pool on Google Earth, and we wanted to invite you to get in touch to discuss your pool service needs." Blume found this concept intriguing and innovative – blending the "truly low tech, snail mail direct mail marketing method" with a "high tech internet-based tool."

Google Earth is not the only way small businesses are taking advantage of technology to see higher return rates on print marketing campaigns. Quick response codes are growing increasingly popular, as they allow consumers to scan a barcode with their smartphones on an ad, poster or package, among others, and be directed to online resources.