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Print is Not Dead. Long Live Print!

Tammy Green

Once upon a time, long long ago, a caveman scratched a message on a stone wall. And just like that…print was born! 

Fast forward thousands of years to the present day. A myriad of both print and digital messages flood our daily lives. The average consumer is bombarded with advertising everywhere they look. As a result, business owners are often left scratching their heads about which market will give them the most bang for their buck. It’s easy to see why business owners would be attracted to the glitter of digital marketing, but a closer look at the outcomes proves that print is not only “not dead”, it is thriving in modern marketing.

Print is More Credible

Recent studies show that consumers rate print advertising as 70-80% more trustworthy than any other media. Social media ads were ranked as 40-45% trustworthy. This is not to say that social media doesn’t have value, it simply means that its allure is limited. Studies also indicate that consumers subconsciously place a higher value on products and services advertised through print.

Print Ads are More Permanent

Just look at any kitchen counter in a typical American household and you will likely see a pile of mail that is filled with print advertising. Mailers are typically handled at least twice by the consumer: once when they bring it in from the mailbox, and again when they sort through the pile on the kitchen counter. Newspaper ads can remain in homes for several days. Print ads in magazines can remain in homes and offices for months before they disappear. Digital advertising, however, has a very brief lifespan. These ads may appear as pop ups in our social media scroll, and can even be considered a nuisance. As a result, most people have become blind to digital ads and scroll past them without a glance. 

Print Ads Are More Effective

Studies show that 80% of customers are likely to take action on printed advertisements vs. only 45% on electronic advertisements. This is because print media can be used to target a specific audience. A glossy ad in a sports magazine is likely to result in more sports equipment sales than a digital ad on social media that disappears after 30 seconds. You’ll pay more for the magazine ad, but you’ll reap more profits to offset the cost. 

So, What’s The Best Marketing Strategy?

A good marketing strategist will tell you that it’s best to not put all of your eggs in one basket. A balanced approach that combines both print and digital marketing will yield the best results. Digital marketing casts a wide net and reaches a larger audience; it’s a great resource for increasing product recognition. Print marketing targets a specific audience demographic and is more likely to result in consumer action. Your marketing specialist at Department of Marketing will advise you on the best course of action for your particular needs.