Feb 2022

The Omnichannel Brand Experience: Leveraging Print in the Modern Age

We are living in a digital age, but that doesn’t mean print can’t leave a valuable, lasting impression with your target audience. Print offers a very tangible experience that is often missing from the digital space. It’s been proven to increase customer engagement and can effectively complement a strong promotional or marketing campaign1

While print collateral can be incredibly effective, it’s not always the right choice for every touch point in your campaign. Considering the pros and cons of each medium, the ideal strategy for your brand will likely feature a combination of both print and digital content.  In this post, we’ll explore some reasons why you should incorporate print materials in your next campaign to offer your end users a thoughtful, omnichannel experience. 

  1. The preference for copy-heavy content
  2. Defines luxury in a digital world
  3. Provides a break from digital overload
  4. Customizable (despite popular belief)
  5. The combinations are limitless!

1. Ideal for copy-heavy content 

Have you ever spoken to an avid reader that prefers good, old-fashioned books? They are PASSIONATE about feeling the weight in their hands, turning each page and sometimes even the smell that comes with age. Naomi Baron, linguistics professor at American University, surveyed more than 300 university students from around the world and found 92% preferred heavier reading from paper books rather than from a screen2. It’s all about the experience for them. While some components of your campaign might be better suited for digital publication, consider printing long form stories or bios to provide customers content in a way that resonates with them. 

2. Luxurious 

Print materials offer an indisputable sense of luxury. The biggest names across the marketplace never stopped leaning on print and the craftsmanship that comes with high quality collateral. Gloss, finishing options and diverse materials to choose from provide end users an experience that represents your brand in the best light. Designing high quality collateral with that end user in mind can also increase the likelihood of prolonged exposure for your brand! 

3. Consider digital overload 

Between personal time, managing finances and working, we’re in front of a screen for most of the day and your consumers know it. According to a 2019 survey from communications non-profit, Two Sides, Americans feel they are getting too much screen time. 71% of respondents reported they value “switching off” their digital devices and reading more in print3.  

We are so bombarded with digital content; print has the potential to be that much more impactful because it’s a departure from the new ‘norm’. Content and Brand Director Ryan Battles is confident that print gets brands noticed now more than ever: “The mass consumption of digital content has elevated the printed magazine [for example] to a collectible premium product which cuts through the digital.” Even if your campaign requires a digital component, incorporating a magazine, postcard or trifold into the mix can give your target demo the break they were looking for. 

4. Customizable 

A misconception about print is that it can’t be customized but these days, that’s not the case! Here are some easy ways to customize and optimize your print ads and collateral:  

  • Data merges: They enable one or more specified fields in a document to be filled out using an Excel spreadsheet. For example, you can address each person by their first name in the intro of a mailer rather than the overused, ‘to whom it may concern’.  
  • Targeted ads: The design or call to action of a print ad can often be adjusted by your publisher based on specific demographics like location. 
  • Call tracking phone numbers: Feature a call tracking number on a piece of print collateral to measure ROI or conversions from that specific component of your campaign. 

5. Limitless combinations!  

Developing the right strategy to reach your goals requires hard work, but with a little creativity, the print and digital combinations are endless. Here are some ideas to get you started… 

  • Try adding a QR code that links to a product tutorial in a catalog or brochure. 
  • Include a print coupon in a customer’s order so they can take advantage of a special offer when their package arrives. 
  • Align the look and feel of a postcard mailer with a follow up email. 
  • Offer website visitors a form to request a hard copy of a catalog or magazine. 

What’s Next? 

We’ve covered some reasons why an omnichannel strategy is the future for your marketing and promotional tactics but these same strategies can be implemented to your business’s branding efforts, as well. Try adding a QR code to your business card that leads to your LinkedIn profile or website. The best part? We can provide you with those standard business forms and branding materials too! Think of us as your one-stop shop for the newer implementations of print in your company initiatives and the traditional uses of print for business cards, stationery, etc.  

Schedule a call with our team today to discuss the print needs of your business! 

Pro tip: Just about every modern print house carries eco-friendly options! Opt for recycled or repurposed products for a more sustainable campaign. Learn more about these sustainable products in our recent Brand Matters blog post.

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