Thing of the past? Print is Back in Fashion!
You might be thinking that print is a thing of the past, that it’s a bit ‘retro’ in this extremely digital age. You’re right, it has taken a back seat to new and technological methods, but you’re wrong in thinking it is redundant. I’m here to tell you that print is making a comeback!
Much like music, print has come around full circle. For Christmas just gone, I received a vintage record player and a Queen Greatest Hits album. This was amazing for me, as not only did it take me back to when I bought this album the first time around, but it also reminded me of how music should be heard. We’ve lost that physical connectionwith music. Now we can click a button to buy an album, it downloads automatically and we can listen to our music on the go, often while we’re doing something else, and we just take this for granted. Digital music has become background noise, rather than an event. Who else remembers the joy of buying your favourite album, the excitement you had while sliding the record from its sleeve, blowing off the dust and placing it on the turntable before dropping the needle?…..that soft crackle before the music bursts into life and of course a lot of the time you could read the words of the songs that were printed onto the sleeves. If you are not old enough, I’m sorry you’ve missed out!
This is exactly the same for print. As more and more people are working, reading and living online, most companies have targeted their marketing arsenal digitally. Although this is an important and effective way of marketing, it’s only a part of the story. We have lost that connection with our clients and this is why print is back in fashion.
Print is exactly like that vinyl album. It’s physical, and it evokes emotion that we are more likely to remember. With so much online marketing, it is easy for messages to get lost and for people to turn off their devices to quiet the noise. Print is the only way to cut through that noise and make a lasting impact.
Why Effective Print is so Powerful
It is Tangible
The most important benefit of print media is the sensory experience. Think of the kindle as an example. Although many people agree it is more convenient while travelling and in storing books, many others strongly feel that something has been lost. Having print in your hands makes the content real and in turn it makes the message more effective. Again this is to do with the emotions and senses that are triggered, from feeling the paper or smelling the ink, it makes much more of an impact.
It is Credible
Many of us are still weary of spam and viruses when using the internet so business can be lost through fear of the unknown. When interacting with marketing online, there is also a sense of this is a “cheap and easy” method resulting in a weaker impact. There is also a lack of trust of the digital world. We are all aware of recent events and the cry of FAKE NEWS.
Print gives a sense of legitimacy to your business and to your message. People know it’s taken time to craft, it’s had a lot of thought put into it and money has been invested. Print has an added bonus, as it also transfers this credibility to your online materials too. So something as simple as handing out a quality business card, a postcard or brochure makes customers more confident in your business and reinforces all your other online activity.
It solidifies your brand identity
When all of your printed materials are branded, i.e they have the same logo, colour theme and font, you are establishing a relationship with your client. Consistency in your materials helps people to easily identify you and reassures them that they are on the right website when they see the same branding. Consistency builds trust with your customers.
It is Engaging and Stays Front of Mind
We all know that print is still part of our daily routine, despite all the digital options, from reading the newspaper in the mornings and finding brochures in the post, to flicking through a catalogue or reading a good book before bed. This is because print makes us more engaged and stays with us long after as a physical reminder. Studies have found that readers of print have the capacity to read longer articles due to the lack of distractions, such as links or ads that we would be presented with online. Surely you will have more of an impact with your clients if you have their full attention?
It Sets You Apart From Your Competitors
Print is going to become the leading part of marketing strategies again over the next couple of years, so why not get ahead of your competitors and start making an impactnow? Big companies such as Waitrose and John Lewis are already starting to utilise print, claiming that it is their most effective advertising method! This says a lot considering they are both known for their TV ads. People are obviously getting fed up of ads and digital information being thrown at them, they are tuning out, so go back to the basics and tell a richer story.
How To Create Effective Print
So we’ve established that print is an extremely powerful tool, but how do you know if your print is effective? Put simply, if you can address all of these points below, your print will have an impact on your potential customers.
Identify your ideal clients
Create a message that engages and captivates them
Create a design that’s impactful and memorable
Choose quality material and finishes that stand out and reinforce your brand
Understand your goal and the purpose of your print
Know what constitutes success and measure it’s effectiveness
Print may be back in fashion but we can’t use it like we used to, it is just a part of the story. Your print now needs to reach those audiences that still want that connection, giving them the option to contact you direct or driving them to your website. Marketing is after all more effective when you compel your clients to buy (get them to come to you) rather than when you try to convince them to buy (sell at them).
Hopefully now you are thinking “Am I using my print effectively?” If you’re not, it is worth investing the time to make sure that you are. Using the power of print alongside your online strategies is the ultimate recipe for success. By utilising as many channels as possible, you are reaching a wider audience and making a lasting impact while doing so.
If you want to talk about which print is best for your business and how to make an impact, feel free to give me a call.
Andy Rogers at Xpedient Print