The debate over the life of print has been happening since the beginning of the digital age, and yet at Mount Vernon we see companies that still rely heavily on magazines, newspaper, billboard and direct mail ads.
Every year, marketers consider how many resources to put towards print verses all of their digital options, or whether to eliminate it altogether. The experts have their thoughts on the future of print advertising, and so do we.
- Print is a target-specific channel. It will continue to be valuable in places of customer presence like events, in-store marketing, or a waiting room – where people still like to kill a few minutes flipping through colorful, tactile magazines or brochures that give actual weight to a message or an ad.
- Augmented Reality. AR will give advertisements the opportunity to be part of a seamless omnichannel experience. As your audience becomes more desensitized to digital ads, advances with AR and image recognition can be a real differentiator for your brand.
- Successful print already encourages a digital interaction. Using a strategy that incorporates print into digital campaigns has proven to be more effective than digital alone because it engages your audience even further to interact with your brand online. Or, try both and entice consumers with a physical interaction, like this Indiana University Day “Super-Secret Decoder Message” direct mail piece (see pic). What could be better than sending recipients rose-colored glasses encouraging interaction in which putting them on reveals hidden text launching a clever fundraiser campaign?
- Print media will re-engage consumers via influencers and offline methods. Even though print is in the process of an evolution (or revolution, as I like to say), I believe that the outcome will lead to greater levels of engagement. If funding your print strategy is in question, you should consider testing the waters of offline partnerships to see if this can work for your brand. As newspaper and magazine production continues to decrease, direct mail might still be the best way to reach your audience.
No matter what you think about paper, the key is to find the right balance between digital and print for any given campaign using the omnichannel approach. We would love to help you with that!