The power of print in a digital world

So did you think print marketing was dead?  

Far from it. The latest research shows that people are 70 per cent more likely to remember a brand they see in print compared to online. 

Print marketing is still entirely relevant even in this digital era, and smart marketers take advantage of the direct line this form of communication still has with the human brain. Yes, the way we consume and share news and information has changed dramatically in the last 20 years alone. And, yes, digital marketing has somewhat stolen the limelight from traditional print communications. But, despite these challenges, print marketing is still driving incredible results; many of them surprising.

Not convinced? Hear us out. Here are four very good reasons why you shouldn’t discount print from your marketing strategy:

1. Trust & Credibility

We’ve all grown up with books, magazines and newspapers, as will people for many generations to come. For this reason we tend to place a great deal of trust in printed materials and the content we read within them. UK statistics show that printed media such as newspapers were the second most trusted source of advertising after television, with digital sources such as websites and social media falling behind.

Information found about a brand in a newspaper or reputable magazine is generally viewed as safer and more credible by customers. This is as opposed to the ever rising tide of pop up adverts and retargeting ads that chase us around the internet wherever we go, which are often viewed as a nuisance or a virus risk. Despite how far online advertising has come, print advertising still demands more effort and reputability to achieve, which naturally creates a higher level of trust and credibility compared with the ‘easy-come-easy-go’ culture of online marketing.


2. Local Targeting

Print marketing and advertising is still a key form of communication for businesses looking to target specific audiences in local areas. Localised print marketing such as newspaper adverts, brochures, flyers and posters are more likely to be seen by the intended target audience than a social media post, which makes perfect sense when you consider the fact that these people are likely to pass by and see the material on a daily basis.

Social media and online marketing can, of course, be targeted to people in specific areas, but marketers still cannot guarantee that enough of the right people are seeing the information. A well-placed advert or poster in a local town, on the other hand, is guaranteed to be seen by the people who matter and can be placed in areas or publications that are directly relevant to the campaign’s purpose.


3. Easy on the Eye

Staring at screens all day is a necessary evil for most of us, and it really takes its toll on our eyes. Printed materials, on the other hand, are much easier on the eye and much more comfortable to look at. This is especially advantageous when the information you want to get across is a little more wordy, or if it requires the attention of your audience to be held for a little longer. A neurological study by Temple University in 2015 also found that people are more likely to remember an advert (and where they saw it) one week after viewing it when the advert was seen in print rather than online. In other words, there’s something about printed information that the human brain enjoys and connects with that online information simply can’t always match.


4. Longevity & Value

Information on the internet is fleeting. An advert you post online one day may be gone by the next, lost to cyberspace and well out of sight. Printed marketing materials, on the other hand, can linger for days, weeks, months or even years depending on what and where it is. This gives it all the benefits of prolonged exposure to a huge number of people, and all for just a one-off cost.

There is also something to be said for the way we humans love and value physical materials and keepsakes. We will always be tactile beings, and being able to physically touch a brand can create a stronger sense of familiarity and value than a fleeting web banner or a series of hyperlinks on a screen.

Don’t get us wrong, we’re not saying that anybody should ditch online marketing – that would be crazy – but rather that you shouldn’t underestimate the power of print. In actual fact, the scenario here is not so much ‘Digital VS Print’, but rather ‘Digital AND Print’. The two can work together to give your brand the best of both worlds if you know how to blend them properly.