Print is Not Dead

The onset of social media and the detail we can capture from the digital world is truly quite amazing. Being able to pinpoint someone based on their social media behavior and the websites they visit seems like it should be out of some futuristic sci-fi movie, but the reality is this capability is here today.

As the digital world continues to develop it’s important not to forget about utilizing additional tried and true marketing methods, such as print, which has been around since 1440. (Actually, long before then, but not in mass form.)

We hear quite often that “print is dead”. We’re here to tell you, it’s not. Yes, publications are now offering online editions, but print itself is not dead. The only difference between using print now versus 15-20 years ago is the strategy behind how you use it.

As with every newer medium, it can also become saturated (and sometimes obnoxious) quickly. So we’ve put together just a few benefits to considering using print.

3 Benefits of Print Advertising:

  1. Longer shelf life. You’re probably not receiving as much mail as you used to? It’s most likely now all coming to you email inbox! Print mail is tangible, something people can hold onto, giving it a longer shelf life versus a digital ad which lasts up to 30 seconds at most.
  2. Sensory play. Print allows you to use an individual’s senses and engage with a piece. They hold it, feel it, maybe peel back an offer or remove a coupon to put in their purse or wallet. You can’t do that with digital. Everything from paper type to folds is engaging with your future customer, giving them an experience to talk about or better yet, bring into the office to show others!
  3. Full attention. Print allows you full focus of your audience’s attention. You don’t have to share your print add with another advertiser or compete for attention on a webpage or in your email inbox. It gives you more space (depending on what you’re mailing) to inform and educate. Apart from in-person or a phone call, direct mail is the next best medium for a sales pitch based on engagement and space to educate. Plus, you can always list your website to drive traffic.

3 Ways to Strategically Use Print Advertising:

  1. The same as digital, you can purchase lists based on just about every demographic available. The most effective print advertising is that which is targeted to your audiences. What do they enjoy doing? What do they read? How many kids do they have? What is their household income, etc.
  2. Marketing Mix. Your marketing plan shouldn’t be all or nothing. You need to have a marketing mix, which means using cross-channel mediums driving home the same message or call-to-action. Print should be combined with digital, email and other tactics depending on cost such as radio or billboard. A strong marketing mix will make you top of mind.
  3. Think out-of-the-box. Direct mail and print doesn’t have to be the oversized postcard. If you’re mailing a small number, think about spending a little more on the piece to create more engagement. Also consider the types of cues you use to open mail. Is the mailing address handwritten? Is it in a nice envelope? Is there more than one piece?

Here are a few out-of-the-box prospecting direct mail pieces we’ve helped put together that received great results!

Risk Game:

Slide6Purpose: AFR Insurance (now Gallagher Insurance) wanted to set-up meetings with new prospects. MI helped them identify their “Top 10” prospects and developed this campaign idea involving a vintage RISK game and a wrap band. The band said, “RISK is fun in a game, but not in life.”

Results: AFR Insurance sent 10 RISK games and set-up 9 meetings.

Umbrella Mailer: 

Purpose: Merit Resources wanted to set-up meetings with new prospects. MI helped them identify their “Top 10” prospects and developed this campaign idea involving an umbrella in a nice case. A card in the box said, “Merit Resources offers an umbrella of services to keep you protected.” The follow-up plan involved sending messages based on the daily weather patterns.

Results: Merit Resources sent 10 umbrellas and set-up 8 meetings.

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