Print and digital advertising aren’t mutually exclusive. In fact, the most effective marketing specialists use print and digital ads combined, maximizing the effects of their campaigns. Print marketing is one of the most important channels for improving brand awareness and recognition.
A couple of days ago, a survey question popped up on my LinkedIn app. “When was the last time you saw an ad from HP?” The corporate giant that once ruled the tech world and was valued more than Apple and Google combined was doing a survey about brand awareness. For me, the better question for that survey would have been, “Do you know what HP is?”
Brand awareness is beyond crucial for a business of any size. It helps the new companies grow, and the big companies thrive. Today, it has never been easier to create a unique brand identity and increase your brand awareness. With social media platforms and their tools for custom targeting, you can quickly create buzz around your brand, new product, or service.
Even though the most significant focus today is on digital, print advertising is still equally important. Some research numbers show that it might be even more important than we might think.
Why is print marketing still relevant today?
Digital marketing and print media marketing do not exclude each other. In fact, the most efficient marketing campaigns use a mix of print and digital ads. Digital ads have great numbers when it comes to impressions. Still, if you consider that 88% of people spent at least 2.8 seconds looking at the print ad, compared to only 4% of those who looked at digital ads, you can clearly see the winner.
Print media is far from ineffective. Even though the public image is that everyone and everything is online now, people still prefer print. In research from Marketing Sherpa:
- 82% of interviewed individuals said that they like print ads (newspapers, magazines),
- 76% said that they prefer direct mail (brochures, flyers, and catalogs),
- 69% chose outdoor advertising (posters, billboards, etc.)
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What is a print marketing mix?
What print materials you might use really depends on the type of business you are having and the desired outcome of your brand awareness campaign. A luxurious hotel or a spa retreat might rely more on catalogs, elegant brochures, and print merchandise. On the other hand, real estate agencies might be focused more on flyers, brochures, and banners. All printed materials can be divided into three categories:
- Print advertising (newspaper ads, magazine ads, catalogs, brochures, outdoor ads, etc.)
- Print collaterals (menus, flyers, price sheets, discount coupons, etc.)
- Stationary (business cards, envelopes, letterheads, notebooks, etc.)
Print marketing and brand awareness
The time when brands had the ultimate monopoly over their image is long gone. In the era of Google, Yelp, and Facebook, users have maximum power. Brand, in essence, is a collection of perceptions and emotional connections from the users, which is why they need to manage brand recognition, awareness, and image carefully.
You manage this by ensuring that each advertisement, brand merchandise, and touchpoint reinforces the brand’s core message and image. Print advertising is considered a top-of-the-funnel medium, which means that it is usually used to influence the customers at the beginning of their buyer’s journey. However, since most print materials and other stages of it.
Print can be a powerful ally in reinforcing the brand message, establishing brand identity, and raising brand awareness in few ways:
It makes it more memorable
One of the most significant advantages of using print advertising is the easy absorption of content, in a study conducted by a Canadian company specialized in neuromarketing True Impact. They discovered that a person needs 21% less cognitive effort when processing information on print ads compared to digital ads. This study also showed that 75% of people reading the print ad could retrieve the information on it, compared to 44% who saw a digital version of the same ad.
It creates an emotional bond
Physical ads also create an emotional experience with your audience. Print ads last longer in our minds because of the tangible and personal interaction we have with the medium. When we hold a newspaper, magazine, brochure, or flyer, parts of the brain responsible for storing visual information are activated more frequently than when we interact with digital ads.
It brings better marketing results
According to the study from Temple University and U.S. Postal Service, printed ads also outperform digital ads. This study showed that the same print ads influence potential customers twice through their buyer’s journey. Since people prefer to save print ads for later reference, especially when purchasing expensive and luxurious products, they also influence the purchasing stage of the journey as well.
It helps you address your audience directly
Digital ads are a great way to reach large audiences and target people with specific interests. However, with direct mail and ads in magazines, you can target the audience directly. Combine this with a personalized message, and you are opening a direct communication channel with every potential customer.
Some 79% of people prefer direct mail over emails. They also spend almost half an hour every month going through direct mail. Also, buying ad space in publications that reach niche audience is as effective as targeted ads on social media at a fraction of the cost.
It boosts brand recognition
Print merchandise or customized advertising tools like tote bags, stickers, shirts, hats, etc., can help brands create awareness about their new products or services and the brand itself. Using the brand logo, colors, and other brand identity elements improves your brand’s visibility. An excellent example of this is shopping bags from luxury brands. They are not just paper bags to carry things. They are also moving billboards for the store. Each one of these bags is carefully designed to promote the brand.
How to make your print campaigns more effective?
Just like with digital ads, you can monitor and optimize the print ads as well. Maybe you won’t get real-time results, but if you plan things in advance and know how to measure the metrics, you can easily adjust each iteration of the physical materials, making the most of the print campaign. These are just a few tips on how to optimize your print advertising campaigns.
Like digital advertising, you can track the performance of a print marketing campaign with the help of key performance indicators. They will help you see if the campaign is performing as expected and if you need to make any changes.
You might not have the precise real-time analytics tools. Still, you can measure the efficiency of your print materials. The tools you can use for tracking the performance of your print marketing strategy are:
- Unique landing pages; Place a shortened link to a specific landing page focused on bringing traffic from print ads on your materials so you can easily track the visits in Google Analytics. Alternatively, you can use QR codes created with a QR code generator, that have UTM tags applied to the URLs.
- Promo codes and coupons; Discount vouchers and coupons are perfect for use on flyers. You can easily track the sales of discounted articles.
- Monitor foot traffic and sales;
Pay attention to the design
People get dozens of flyers and brochures each week, which means that it is getting increasingly hard to get the attention of your target audience. It is not enough to use free templates from Crello or Adobe Spark and change their copy. You must pay special attention to the design of your printed materials because people spend roughly 2.8 seconds looking at printed materials, and you need to grab their attention quickly.
Every piece of advertising or communication material that comes from your business serves as an excellent opportunity to amplify your brand identity and message. Therefore you have to use the company logo and colors on each of these materials. Doing so will help raise brand awareness and build brand recognition over time.
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Provide value to your audience
This is by far one of the most overlooked things when it comes to advertising in general. People forget that advertising is about providing value to the customers, not about promoting the company or the service. Each product that you advertise has the potential to help your target audience. Your job is to know your potential customers well and make ads that will provide them with the necessary information and solutions to their problems.
Have a clear call to action
Every advertising campaign has a clear goal that it needs to fulfill. These goals are not always sales-oriented. Sometimes goals of the campaigns can be focused on getting more leads, informing potential customers that there is a new business in town, that the company is changing its branding, etc.
No matter what the final goal of your campaign is, having a clear call to action will help you reach it quickly, efficiently, and without any confusion. Think well about the desired outcome of your campaign and create calls to action accordingly. You can have more than one call to action, each made specifically for the advertising channel you might use in one campaign.
Finding suitable designs for your flyers can take some time. You want to select a solution that represents your brand, and that speaks to your target audience. Using free templates might be the cheapest solution. However, it won’t help to improve your brand recognition. Original designs created especially for your brand can boost your brand recognition and improve your campaigns’ results.
Our team of designers at MenyPixels is dedicated to helping you get perfect designs for your brand. If you want to learn more about how our designers can help you achieve greater brand awareness, book a free demo session.