Print Media Relevance in Digital Marketing

Printing Press

When FirstTracks first opened its doors in 2009, digital marketing was just beginning to make its mark in the world. Sure, we had email and a paid search advertising to work with, but we were a long way from the integrated approaches and powerful data tools that we now use. Print was still the go-to medium with the biggest bang for the buck. Direct mail, postcards, catalogs, and annual reports all helped make the difference that marketers needed and wanted. Fast forward to the current day. The digital marketing integrations that tie in email, social media, voice, mobile devices, and more have grown at an exponential rate, and will continue to evolve along with our digital lifestyles.

Constantly changing times

Our team has grown and evolved a lot since those early days when our business was heavily involved in print and, to a lesser degree, digital. Even then, the digital work we created was far from the powerful e-commerce solutions that we develop today.

Today, that balance has shifted dramatically. The print work that was once the lion’s share of our marketing mix has definitely been reduced, but that doesn’t mean it has lost its relevance. Print in many cases is the perfect accompaniment to many of our e-commerce client’s email campaigns and other digital marketing efforts.

Something you can feel and share

Printed postcards, appeals, newsletters, brochures, catalogs, annual reports, and books can help bolster any digital marketing campaign. People can still go to the mailbox to pick up a catalog, magazine, or an annual report and unplug to read without having a screen in their face. There’s a tactile feel to the paper that you can’t achieve in a digital medium. Print also provides added opportunities to tell your story or sell your products and services with large color photos and illustrations, as well as with much wider text treatments than the digital realm can sometimes allow.

Print media is a key component to our marketing mix

Printed collateral can be useful to help drive traffic to websites and bolster philanthropic appeals, and it is typically viewed several times with an increased frequency of exposure. Printed collateral doesn’t disappear after being viewed once. Because print media stays on tables, countertops, and desks, it has a longer shelf life and is typically seen many times by multiple people.

There’s still something great about the smell of a freshly printed piece and the satisfying turn of the page. You can also share or loan printed pieces to friends, family, and colleagues.

Douglas Toys Fall Holiday Catalog 2022
Douglas, a longtime FirstTracks client, publishes three catalogs a year, including a massive 262-page 8.5″ x 11″. These catalogs are sent to all of their wholesale customers. They then use the text and images in all digital communications and digital marketing efforts.
Annalee Dolls Catalog 2022
The Annalee 2022 Catalog is a 32-page 5.5″ x 8.5″ printed catalog that is mailed to the entire Annalee database. In addition, the catalog is featured as a Flipbook on the Annalee site and is featured in targeted emails.

Using a hybrid approach

Two of our longtime clients still rely heavily on printed catalogs to present their products in a different light than is possible on a digital channel. These two very different media combine to provide extremely measurable results, and this hybrid approach to marketing has proven time and time again to be very rewarding for both the client and the end user.

Each business or organization has its own marketing goals, and print can play a valuable role in that area. Research has proven that print is still viable in today’s world when used as a strategic tool within your digital marketing campaign mix.

Have you considered leveraging print media?

Contact us to learn how we can help you maximize the benefits of printed collateral to increase sales, build memberships, and communicate more effectively with your customers.

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