In the age of digital, to some, print looks obsolete. As more marketing is going online it seems as though variable data and direct mail may be falling out of the ROI spectrum. If you think this, you would be mistaken. Although marketing has made the shift toward digital, print is not being pushed out, but has simply made room for more marketing platforms. Some marketing professionals now see this as a more “non-traditional” strategy (I am sure marketing professionals before our time cannot believe their ears). In fact, the Nielsen Company’s recent research found that more than half of all consumers use print circulars to get product and sales information; that comes to about 20 percent higher than e-mail marketing!
Using a cross pollination of digital and print marketing strategies can improve your sales and ROI significantly, and we have some techniques you can use next time you are thinking of a print marketing push to go along with your digital.
According to an ABM study, print is still highly impactful even when we are talking about B2B marketing. They conducted a study with almost 7,000 media-end participants and found that 96 percent use both websites and print magazines to gain business information. ABM also asked these users to rate their sources in buying decisions. When thinking about research for work-related purchases they found:
Websites—65 percent used this medium to find a vendor
Product information from manufacturers—62 percent
Print magazines—48 percent
Track Your Investment
Using analytics is key when starting up a cross-marketing campaign but sometimes difficult to achieve. In order to bridge the two, try using personalized URLs or QR codes in order to track the relationship between the two mediums. For example, we have even installed a vehicle graphic with a QR code where people can get deals and promotions right off the vehicle, while allowing the business to track how many customers are using that platform.
Use Social Media
Make the most out of your marketing by disseminating your print pieces onto social media, especially if you have a large following. This will consistently keep the flow of traffic in your marketing campaign from print to digital and vice versa, ultimately stretching your marketing dollars.
Ask Your Customers
Sometimes the simpler the better. Find out what your customers think about you and your services both online and in print. Call them, have them rate you on your website or social media and if you have trouble finding those that will give you that information offer an incentive.
Try Variable Data
This isn’t a new technology but it can be something that we have seen work effectively for businesses. You can identify your customer by name and specific demographic, even use information from your social media networks in order to sign them up for your e-mail marketing campaign as well as a print campaign, which can gain double exposure and further solidify your brand.
Try Using Call-to-Actions (CTAs) with creativity
Even using print marketing to gain traffic online with CTAs can gain more awareness for your brand. Ask them to visit your social media site, or rate you online by offering an incentive to visit your website. Make sure to track this by offering a special code that can help you in analytics for your cross-marketing campaign.
Online companies such as Air BnB, Politico, Pitchfork and digital blogs like Pando are all getting their print press passes by taking their publications into a more physical form. They are not completely abandoning their digital marketing campaign but opting for a real-life version in order to increase their readership.
Buyers and consumers alike are still largely using print to influence their buying decisions and big companies are following suit. They are also increasing the platforms they use for buying decisions, so in order to have the most effective marketing campaign opt in for cross-pollination of print and digital. Why not build your brand on every platform possible in order to reach the largest audience?
AJ Printing & Graphics and Wine Country Signs is a