Integrate printing into your marketing mix

Don’t miss an opportunity to integrate printing … It’s a winning combination

Text7Much has been discussed about what is the right mix of media (or shall we call them channels?) when developing an integrated marketing strategy. There are lots of options, including print (both static and variable), email, search engine optimization (SEO), social media (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube to name a few), billboards (both digital and static), TV, radio, magazines, and newspaper advertising that companies can use. Should we add sky writing to the mix? As you can see, our customers have a lot of choices and are often confused on what is the right mix for them to use to meet their business objectives.

Is print dead?

With many declaring that “Print is dead!”, it makes you wonder should you even consider using print? The overwhelming answer from the market is YES! Print is still a viable solution for many marketing requirements, but we all have to think differently when we consider using it. A workflow, or shall we say strategy, that many use today is based on a more database driven implementation for both the print and web components. You probably have heard about personalized urls (pURLs), but you may not have leveraged this technology yet. Just to recap, a pURL is a microsite that is connected to a database and allows for the web page to be dynamically reconfigured based on what is in the database or how the responder interacts with the microsite. Therefore, many campaigns are using variable data print (VDP) that includes a pURLs for the recipient to go to as a response mechanism.

The internet will provide the responder the “immediate” interaction that a printed product can’t provide. According to the DMA, over 30% of people respond to direct mail by going online. And I could argue that this number will increase as more people use an integrated marketing strategy. Bottom line is that direct mail is still viable and becomes a stronger solution when integrated with the internet. Both are here to stay, we just need understand the best way to use them together and how  consumers ultimately want to get their information and interact with your company. The two provide more value when used together than each can when they are used by themselves. I leave you with this thought…”Integrated marketing strategies are the ONLY strategies to use to grow your business opportunities!” To use any media as a stand alone solution is short sighted and will limit your opportunities. It all becomes very simple when you start thinking like this. So, go forth, integrate and grow!

Best of Days to You

Audrey Ferrante
Ferrante & Associates, Inc.

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