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The Purpose of Print for Modern Marketers

Last updated: 09-30-2019

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The Purpose of Print for Modern Marketers

We share a lot about the “whats” and “hows” around print marketing – where it’s useful, how to be creative with it, what’s new in the world of print magazines and catalogs. But sometimes it’s helpful to sit back and talk about the “whys.”

Carnaby Press shared a great article on exactly that – the purpose of print as they see it. And it gives some terrific examples of why print is such an important element to a brand’s marketing strategy.

“Many successful brands use print collateral to showcase the brand’s personality; taking customers beyond the products and services to introduce them to a ‘lifestyle’. Take Airbnb’s magazine, Airbnbmag,” the article notes. “A typical issue will take you through an insider’s guide to Buenos Aires, tips to enjoy a family canyoning adventure, and an introduction to the Caribbean’s most revered sport, road tennis. The premise is simple: to share travel and culture stories that humanize Airbnb and educate its audience, which in turn asserts the brand’s expertise and authority.”

This kind of effect can speak directly to your brand’s mission, elevating the marketing to impact not just the bottom line but the brand’s presence in the industry.

“Quality printed content isn’t reserved for catalogues and lifestyle magazines either,” the article continues. “Print adds a certain gravitas to robust thought-leadership pieces. Whitepapers, for example, are often used by financial and research-based organisations as a way of asserting authority within their respective fields. They are a key feature of the midway point of a purchase journey, as customers narrow down their choices and look for evidence that the brand they have landed on is the one that has real authority in the field.”

And of course, it’s important to note that print is not competing with digital – when done properly, they co-exist and amplify each other as part of a brand’s overall campaign.

“A commonality among all the aforementioned brands is that print marketing is not intended as a replacement for digital – rather, a complementary asset,” the article notes. “Research conducted in 2018 by audience intelligence agency Delineate found that 44% of respondents believed that they were more likely to remember something they read in print, with 25% agreeing that they trusted print more than digital.”

It’s good to step back from all the “hows” and “whats” of our busy days and remember the “whys.” When it comes to print in your marketing strategy, the reasons are becoming more evident in this age of digital overload.


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