If you’re a super fan of the original 1984 Ghostbusters movie, you may remember Egon Spengler’s presumptuous remark that “print is dead”. Made whilst setting up a now ancient looking computer, the comment embodies the growing sentiment amongst the young start-up generation that has seen the rapid growth of digital and left the print industry in a game of catch-up.

There’s a common misconception that when marketing your business, it’s now all about digital, and it’s true that it certainly dominates thanks to it’s ability to constantly track your ROI. But despite being the old dog, print still very much has a place in the modern marketing mix, it’s simply that it now has to embrace its much younger counter part to enhance itself.

If you’ve been considering condemning your marketing to life lived only online because you feel as though you haven’t got anything back from your investment, it’s time to ask yourself if you’ve been doing it the old fashioned way, or considered a more targeted data lead approach that the digital world takes?

Have a Purpose

Rather than the old-fashioned scatter gun approach of generalised marketing, customers and clients alike are now well accustomed with everything being personalised to them.
Many small businesses are unfortunately in the habit of being another junk mail sender, where everything is sent out to large quantities of unfocused groups.

But who in their right mind would really do this?

We’ve all been on the receiving end of useless leaflets that just end up in the recycling bin.

This approach is a total waste of money, and has no purpose.

Whether digital or print marketing, the ingredients are all the same and each project should begin with a goal. What are you trying to achieve?

Using analytics and audience insights which can now be gained via digital approaches, can dramatically improve direct mail campaigns because it’s giving you the information on your clients wants and needs.

Once you begin to use a targeted approach such as this, you can then create your print to be more useful.

Think about Conversion

There’s no worse downfall of a marketing campaign than the lack of a call-to-action.

The very reason digital has become so popular is due to it’s easy of gaining that item or getting a response. It’s just a click of a link.

But the same can still be said for print, it just needs to be more thought lead.

Whilst designers will argue over how it looks and the placement of products, your main aim should be making the details clear of how they can receive your goods.

Make it easy for customers to buy direct by giving them various options, this could include a Call Tracking number at the bottom of each page so you can determine which page layout is more popular, or implementing a QR code on a particular product so that they can instantly purchase it via their smartphones.

People have their preferred method of contact, so don’t just limit it to a website. Including an email and a phone number can help you to establish a better relationship in the long run, than a quick purchase through the website.

It’s not about how you want your customers to contact you, it’s encouraging them to initiate a relationship in the first place.

Design Matters

Online content has had a resurgence thanks to the inclusion of images and GIFS, and it’s because we love looking at them. It’s easier on the eyes, takes far less effort than reading a massive bunch of text, and is much more sharable.

As many content marketers are now also adding graphic design to their portfolio, there’s no better time to embrace our love for a great piece of art than in the very marketing material that we’re handing over to our clients.

When you have an interesting brochure design for example, it can capture the imagination and excite the senses.

Many of us can’t deny the nice feeling of flicking through a well finished printed document and getting the scent of fresh ink.

Adding a more sensual touch to your marketing campaign may just break up the clutter and noise that’s happening online.

The fact is there’s no such thing as print vs digital in marketing. They should be working together to form a unified marketing strategy which has a clearly defined goal.

Don’t waste your time or money for the sake of it, use each element where it’s appropriate and you will see better conversions than marketing on a whim.


By Ali White, Marketing & Sales Director at CallTracks

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