Is Print Marketing Dead?

Print’s Not Dead: Print Marketing Will Continue to Thrive

Many people believe that the print market is dying and that internet marketing is the wave of the future, when in fact, the print industry is far from dead. Print marketing has continued to grow and evolve along with the upsurge of new technology. According to a Pitney Bowes survey, 76% of small businesses say their ideal marketing strategy encompasses a combination of both print and digital communication. BIA Kelsey’s study shows that direct mail marketing dominated ad spend by local retail advertising, garnering over 43% of total retail advertising in 2012 and is predicted to remain the leading advertising method in local ad market in 2017.

Print is (and will remain) an effective tool for delivering your message to your potential clients for many reasons.

Variable Printing

Variable printing allows you to customize each piece of media by changing certain elements from piece to piece. For example, we at Serious Print could run a mailer campaign and personalize every postcard with the name of the recipient, or develop unique coupons with individual serial numbers so that you could track which customers used them. In a study by Info Trends on the marketing communication needs of various businesses, found that marketing efforts featuring a higher level of personalization complexity results in a higher return on investment. Your audience recognizes that it takes more effort to customize print media than digital giving it a more powerful presence than a personalized email.


qr-code-for-tracking-print-marketing-effortsQR Codes and NFC

Print media continues to grow in its interactivity with the advancing technologies of smartphones and tablets. In the past, the only way to advertise your Web presence via print was to include the URL and hope your audience takes the time to type it into a browser. Now, QR codes and NFC technology have made it possible for print media to directly and instantly connect customers to your website. NFC (near-field communication) is a new technology that’s sure to replace QR codes down the line. NFC technology uses a tiny microchip to send a signal directly to your mobile device without the need for scanning, simply tap the print media against your mobile device and the NFC chip connects instantly to the website.

These technologies can also be used in more creative ways to play videos, distribute files, or activate augmented reality features that encourage your audience to explore, engage and share with others.

Print and Social Media

Business cards are a social medium that you’d be hard pressed to find from a serious entrepreneur without his/her Facebook address, Twitter address, or other social networking URL printed on it. In a Nielson survey, slightly over half of respondents said they use print media in conjunction with a social media advertising campaign. When using both print and social media, the two should share a symbiotic relationship. Our designers at Serious Inc. will create your print media to draw attention to your social media sites and develop your social media profiles in a way to strengthen your print campaign.

It’s also very effective to add your customers comments and testimonials from your social media networking profiles to your print designs.

Print Marketing is Used Less, so It Stands Out More

It has become very difficult to stand out in the online crowd because so many companies are now competing for their audience’s attention. Because the focus of most businesses has turned to online marketing, a void has been left in the print market that is begging to be filled.

Consider your daily ritual of going to the mailbox to get your postal mail. You set aside a few minutes to take the time to look at each piece of mail before returning to whatever you were doing before; compared to how quickly and how often you check your email, typically deleting all the “junk” emails without even reading them. This means that your print materials are likely to receive special attention, especially if they look unique.

The US Postal Service has conducted research stating that households reported that they tend to respond to about 1 in 10 pieces of direct mail. It was found in an International Communications Research that 73% of consumers actually prefer mail over other advertising methods. And 85% of consumers sort and read their snail mail on a daily basis, and 40% try new businesses after receiving direct mail, according to Research by Mail Print. In a 2010 study by the Direct Marketing Association found that for every $1.00 spent on print advertising expenditures can generate an average of $12.57 in sales. This high return ratio was found to be universal across all industries: No matter what business you in, print remains and will continue to remain an effective medium for creating sales and generating revenue.

Conclusion

Print marketing can lead to great success, but it doesn’t guarantee it. It is especially important that you develop an effective print strategy that will put your brand in the spotlight and excite your audience. Of course you could use the same boring print material as everyone else, but you will have an extremely hard time making your mark!

Here at Serious Inc. our professional designers will get creative and put real thought and effort into your print marketing collateral, making use of all the tools and technologies that are available.

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About Gary Cooke

I am a social media strategist and graphic designer with over 10 years of experience in the digital world, including web and user experience design. I have worked with and advised a wide range of clients on social media strategies, and how to present their brand in both the digital and printed worlds.

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