It’s Not Print that’s Dead, It’s Patience

wholefoodsmarketThere’s nothing like a dog-eared page to signal real reader engagement.

Andy Seibert has seen it all in his 20+ years in brand journalism.

“I’ve seen the power of print rise, fall, and steady,” Seibert writes in CampaignLive. “The truth is, print marketing is a valuable medium. It’s tactile, it’s experiential and studies have shown that print methods demand consumer attention, are popular with ever-coveted millennials, and when paired with other methods, can even result in increased spend.”

What accounts for the hesitation when it comes to considering print? According to Seibert, it comes down to impatience. Digital metrics pour in as soon as you push go on a campaign, but print’s results are often not as immediate.

“For many brands, the key to driving sales is more complex than simply offering coupons or special offers. Instead, it’s about going beyond the commercial experience to aligning your brand with an ethos that drives a consumer towards your product,” he explains.

He gives several examples of brands that have built incredible customer relationships with their print vehicles, including Ikea and their annual catalog fervor, and Whole Foods with their Market Magazine.

These print pieces are savored, lingered over, dog-eared and highlighted, and that kind of metric is not easily captured on a dashboard when the boss is breathing down your neck for KPIs. Still, Seibert notes, “for some, print content can offer a tactile and deeply experiential engagement with a brand’s message. As we’ve seen with brands in travel, retail, grocery and more, print content is certainly worth the effort involved—even if ROI isn’t immediately apparent.”