Thoughts and Adventures

The Evolution of Investours Marketing

A lot of my focus with Investours has been on the web development side of things, but another strong focus of mine is in developing the marketing materials and trying to make the communications with our customers be uniform across the organization.

When I first arrived in Bucerias, I realized that our marketing material was limited. The weekend after I arrived was also the first farmer’s market. We arrived there with some business cards, a sign up sheet, a flyer, some pictures on a computer and a table.


First Farmer’s Market

Realizing how unwelcoming our presentation was, I quickly went to purchase an inviting table cloth to brighten up our table and try to talk with people walking around the farmer’s market. Through our experience, we realized that people aren’t going to just come over and talk to a table unless they think they might want what we are selling. Our problem was that you could not tell what we were selling from a distance so people would just avoid the hassle of figuring it out. Every other table had a product that was easily viewable from a distance. We needed to make our product obvious as well.


Second Farmer’s Market

While Yifan was here interning, she helped us improve the table by creating a sign to hang on the table that included our slogan: “Tours That Fight Poverty.” People now knew what we were selling. Our problem became getting them to buy our product. We needed them to come over to the table to discuss it with us, stay at our table, then sign up and commit to a tour. We needed our table to be more professional and we needed it to tell a story.


Third Farmer’s Market

There have been too many horror stories cycling that dont paint a good light on Mexican tourism. People can’t just trust anyone with a sign. They need to know what they are getting and be able to trust their tour provider. Having a professional presentation and proof of great past experiences makes a tour legitimate. We were lucky enough to have the support of some great photographers in the area along with my Mom and Aunt Maggie.

Elizabeth Lloyd Photography and Prema Photographic took some great photos on our first tour in Puerto Vallarta that were instrumental to improving our marketing. We had a banner professionally made that was clean and simple with pictures. We selected our favorite photos that gave a tourist a good impression of what an Investours experience was like and Aunt Maggie printed them out and laminated them for us. My Mom was coming to visit us the following Saturday, which was just in time for the next farmers market where we could display our new material.

In addition to the banner and the photos, the biggest improvement that I spent the most amount of time on was creating a marketing book that walks the user through an Investours experience. The whole process is displayed through pictures with the businesses of several entrepreneurs highlighted. I think the book provides the most valuable tool for getting people to become interested in the work we are doing and is most compelling for getting them to sign up for a tour. They can get a clear picture of what an experience is like and directly see the change we are making.

Mom brought the first iteration of the book and we found some minor improvement areas. Beth worked her magic again and came on another tour with us. She had a ton of excellent photos that could be incorporated into theĀ next iteration of the marketing book which was recently sent to Anna Ruman to bring to a conference as a marketing tool and forward on to Boston for additional marketing materials there.

We would like to make a similar marketing book for Tanzania and highlight the work being done there as well. Katie Ranhorn is currently working in Tanzania and will begin work on the Tanzania marketing book.

Lastly, I am looking forward to getting our final brand identity work completed by Erik so I can begin working on developing the rest of the marketing material that will be used across the organization for house parties, flyers, emails, etc.. It will be important to send a similar message no matter which Investours location a tourist goes to.

Let me know if you have any other ideas for marketing materials that we should implement or if you are interested in helping out with graphic design work.

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