“He’s not dead, he’s just mostly dead.” Compared to conventional print marketing, paperless marketing is cheaper, easier to target your audience and transparent in it’s effectiveness. You can actually tell if someone has clicked on your ad, opened your newsletter or visited your website. When you place an ad in your local newspaper or in a magazine, you can only guess how many people looked at it, or acted on it.
Another problem with print marketing is that it’s expensive. You’ll spend as much or more on a single placement as you might spend on a month or two of an AdWords campaign. If your printing and mailing your promotion, there’s design, printing, shipping and postage expenses to absorb. The general trend across most industries is to move half to three quarters of your annual print budget into online marketing and website development.
The natural question becomes, why not stop print marketing altogether? I don’t suggest stopping. Scale it back, sure. Move some of those dollars into interactive media. But there is still an audience for print, we just need to be more selective about when and where we advertise.
In print media, bigger is better. Place one full page ad instead of 3 quarter page ads. It’s more impactful, generates greater response and is remembered longer. Special editions are more valuable than standard issues; a Summer Guide, Winter Guide or “Best Of” publication has a longer shelf life. Say yes to sales and special offers. Magazines will sometimes reach out with a great price for a great placement. I find those hard to pass up.
Would you believe me if I said junk mail is fresh again? I’m not talking about the wad of newsprint coupons stuffed weekly in your mailbox. Handsome pieces of well written collateral are getting opened again. Imagine an embossed invitation or colorful brochure with a special offer. The USPS offers a single-price delivery to individual postal routes, that’s a great innovation. The irony is that everyone is so over spam in their inbox that physical junk mail is being perceived as personal and special. I don’t think anyone saw that one coming.