Given the rate at which advertisers and marketers have been jumping on electronic media bandwagons these days, it seems that print (still the most effective communication medium thus invented) has to justify itself. The Print Council’s recent “Why Print?” campaign of “Top Ten Ways Print Helps You Prosper” is a case in point. While there are certainly more than 10 reasons for advertisers and marketers to prefer print, we’ve taken a tip from the Print Council and present our own top 10 reasons to use print.
1. Print Gets Delivered. Studies have shown that even requested e-mail marketing is not delivered as much as one-fourth of the time by ISPs’ spam-blocking filters. Yet the Post Office—so-called “snail mail”—boasts 99% deliverability. Imagine: the marketing campaigns you have worked so hard on can actually be delivered!
2. Print Generates Higher ROI. Studies conducted by the Direct Marketing Association and the Wharton Economic Forecasting Associates have found that advertisers spend $167 per person on direct mail marketing and sell $2,095 worth of goods per person. That’s an ROI of 13 to 1. And an RIT study found that 67% of respondents said they liked receiving printed mail about products from companies with whom they do business.
3. Print Drives Other Media. Studies have repeatedly found that customers who receive a printed catalog from a given retailer are nearly twice as likely to go to that retailer’s Web site and make a purchase. Print’s role in “multichannel marketing” is a crucial one.
4. Print Is Credible. Print takes time, skill and money to produce. This imparts a sense of importance and credibility to printed messages that electronic media lack. Anyone with a computer can send email; it takes effort to produce a print mailing.
5. Print Is User-Friendly. No one has ever received an error message trying to read a catalog. No one has ever needed to consult a help file to figure out how to use a postcard. Print is the ultimate in user-friendliness.
6. Print Is Permanent. Batteries die, computer screens go black, email gets deleted and disk drives fail. Electronic files are ephemeral, but print endures.
7. Print Is Portable. No one needs a special device or application to use print. Print never suffers from file or platform incompatibility. Flyers, catalogs and brochures are the ultimate in “grab and go” and can be consumed anywhere at any time. And when the power goes out, print will still work.
8. Print Respects Privacy. Print never interrupts someone’s dinner. “Do not call” lists have reduced the effectiveness of telemarketing, and government regulations have made “cold emailing” difficult. Print is the perfect medium to open the door to other media, introducing a potential caller or emailer. Customers can specify thee best time to call, or indicate that they don’t mind receiving email. This “respect for the customer” leads to a more meaningful relationship-and a sale.
9. Print Is Personal. Customer publications and personalized printing can give customers exactly what they’re looking for. Research has found that 66% of people surveyed read custom publications and 80% agree that custom publications contain “useful information.” And the average response rate for customized color direct mail campaigns is 21%, rising to a high of 75%. Customized, personalized printing is not just for digital presses either. Offset printing is often used to produce effective and higher quality, customized materials.
10. Print Is Pretty. The beauty of print has never been in doubt. At heart, printers are craftsmen, and advances in software, presses, inks and substrates, and printers’ skills have made printed materials even more attractive, appealing and effective. High-quality imagery and typography and special effects enhance the beauty of print, which in turn enhances the customer’s message.
These are 10 compelling reasons, but the 11th and most important reason is simply that print works.
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