Print marketing - who knows the facts?

We chat with our resident print expert and MD, Roger Paterson, on why brands should consider print

Roger Paterson
By Roger Paterson
  • 13 June 2017
  • Reading time: 7 minutes
Print marketing

A golden age of print

When it comes to corporate brand marketing and communications, print often gets pushed to the bottom of the pile. We regularly attend print conferences and exhibitions, searching out the latest innovations in print. Many of these events aim to appeal to the younger generation, those with minimal experience of print as a medium. 

So, is print thriving and why are some of the world's biggest brands embracing it as the medium of the moment? 

Why should brands consider print?

Your brand may not want to launch a campaign based solely on print, but it definitely has its place as part of a cross-channel marketing campaign. It's an important place too; brands are proving they achieve a higher ROI when using print alongside digital. 

Unlike digital, print is a tactile, tangible medium that evokes trust. Did you know that over 50% of customers find print marketing the most trustworthy of all marketing materials? Research shows tangible marketing materials are more likely to engage customers too, as there's a physical connection with the brand and product that you simply don't get with digital. 

Over 50% of customers find print marketing the most trustworthy of all marketing materials. 

So, why are more brands not using print?

The fact of the matter is, people tend to follow the general trend in marketing, which is why digital appears to have taken the lead. There's definitely something to be said for standing out from the crowd and trying something new, though. Whilst it may once have been commonplace, print is now considered to be non-traditional marketing. It's the innovative approach that can help brands to engage and retain clients, outshining their competitors. 

Isn't print dead?

There are those who say, 'Most printed media will be gone by 2020', but it's simply not true; print is actually seeing a rebirth. The evolution of the internet and digital marketing won't kill off print (just as it didn't kill off TV). Instead, it makes consumers look at print differently. Brands that stick to tried-and-tested marketing may be unwilling to try new things, but they will soon realise harnessing the power of print is an excellent way to attract and retain client attention. 

What makes print such a successful medium?

The current generation of millennials have grown up with digital - from Twitter to Facebook, Instagram to LinkedIn - everything is online, immediate and offering instant gratification. However, this means that millennials are actually more likely to be impressed by print media. Printed brochures, labels, flyers - even branded products such as mugs and t-shirts - offer something different to the onslaught of website content and email newsletters that have become second nature. 

A print brochure or postcard will be kept, referred to multiple times and even passed to other people, making it a valuable marketing tool. According to research by Print Power (www.printpower.eu) printed catalogues and customer magazines allow brands to engage with customers for up to 25 minutes per session. 

Print is clearly an untapped medium that brands are starting to take notcie of. 

Should you commit to print? 

We believe that in order to be 'significant', a brand message should be costly. Not just in terms of financial spend, but also in terms of quality, uniqueness and creativity. Yes, printed marketing pieces are a costly demonstration of an organisation's commitment, but by investing in more costly marketing, brands are demonstrating their long-term investment in their products, services or cause. After all, if someone invested enough time and money to print it (and mail it), it must be important! 

So, how can brands use print to build customer realtionships? 

Marketing your brand is increasingly about landing customers online but expanding your business relationship with customers offline, for B2B and B2C businesses. It's why catalogue shopping brands still send customers print catalogues and it's why you'll still find printed brochures, flyers and promotional products in almost every office, showroom and reception in the country. 

We believe companies shouldn't be afraid to try something new when it comes to marketing in order to reap enhanced ROI. In our opinion, print is, as yet, an untapped medium in today's increasingly digital climate. 

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