If you only have a pound to spend, everyone will advise you to spend it on digital advertising because you reach more people and print is expensive. So, in a world where newspapers like The Independent are ditching print entirely, does it still have a place in your marketing campaigns?
Top ten reasons to use print
There’s something more luxurious and trustworthy about print. Think about how it feels to receive a letter compared to an email. Emails are commonplace. A letter has an air of exclusivity about it. So, if your product or service is high end, I’d strongly advise looking at investing in quality paperwork.
Print is great if you have a very specific target market. For example, if you know the names and addresses of the people you want to attract. Print is more likely to reach the desk of the addressee, especially if you use ‘Private and Confidential’. And they’re far more likely to read it.
Reading on screen is tiring. That’s why writing for the web is so different from other types of writing. It has to be short and punchy. If the concept you are outlining is complex, print is better. Don’t most of us still print it out anyway? Save your customers the money and hassle, print it for them.
If you’re meeting customers face to face (e.g. shop, conference, meeting) print also works better. For example, when you meet someone for the first time, you still give them a business card despite the existence of social media don’t you? If you have a sales team, they use printed business cards and sales collateral. They ‘re a better aid memoir than digital, they’re easier to refer to when looking at a screen and they’re a chance to reinforce your brand.
I don’t mean free! I mean print as a valuable part of a wider campaign. The most effective campaigns are designed to regularly imprint a consistent message across a number of different channels. And, with the rise of AR, it will usually be print that’s the start of a prospective customer’s journey.
Doesn’t it sometimes feel as if we’re drowning in a deluge of digital marketing? To be heard you must be different. How many letters do you get? … Exactly!
You can’t delete print as easily. If it was an ad in a magazine it can be thrown away but it’s far more likely to stick around on a coffee table. An email can be (and often is) deleted immediately. We know it takes 5-7 impressions before a message imprints on our brains and print is far more likely to last this long. The shelf life of a Twitter post, for example, is seconds or, at best, minutes.
If you do choose to write letters, they accurately target your market (see 2 above), but also, they’re personalised. If something is addressed directly to us, we’re far more likely to take notice. It’s more authentic. A simple handwritten thank you card, for example, exceeds expectations. Anything that goes above and beyond increases customer retention because it shows you care.
Only print does justice to beautiful images. If you want to showcase stunning images, they have the most impact if they’re in print.
There’s something more trustworthy about print. It’s been around forever. Once out there it can’t be changed. Print is usually used by established companies so a customer will automatically attach credibility to the brand.