How (Digital) Print is Making a Comeback
For years, digital marketing has been taking over the market share that print media used to dominate. The popular refrain states that “print is dead.” However, the numbers are clear: print is alive and well. Through the success of direct mail and the resurrection of certain print publications, we can see that print media is actually making something of a comeback these days. However, the print of today looks somewhat different than the print of yesteryear. With the advent of digital printing, print materials can be more targeted and refined. The personal touches are what is drawing people back to print in an age where online is king, and print’s resurgence is here to stay.
It may be hard to remember a time without it, but the internet is not really all that old. Many adults can still recall their pre-digital lives with a certain fondness, and Millennials, in particular, are highly primed for an emotional connection to print, having spent their childhoods with it and transitioning into our fully digital world on the cusp of adulthood. A perfectly targeted piece of direct mail or the right print advertisement can pull on the heart strings with a healthy dose of nostalgia that is unique to this medium.
Even though the internet is a wonderfully powerful tool that provides nearly unlimited information at our fingertips 24/7, there is something to be said for the concept of “less is more.” Many consumers these days actually prefer to look at a hard-copy catalog instead of browsing a website. With so many choices, it can be hard to narrow things down if you are not looking for something specific, and it is all too easy to shift your attention to a different online task. Browsing a catalog can hit that nostalgia button again and can be used to direct the reader to what you want them to see in a more straightforward fashion. Digital printing can also allow you to customize mailers with scannable QR codes, targeted coupons, and personalized offerings.
Print as a Luxury Item
Whereas online advertising is everywhere, some forms of print are not as in our faces as they once were. However, absence makes the heart grow fonder, and the retreat of print has actually made it more desirable. Print marketers have taken this opportunity to make materials that are actually in demand because of their limited availability. In this case, limited quantity means higher quality.