How refreshing is it to know that one of the oldest creative trades is very much alive. It cheers me up to hear this. Print has come under attack from new media trends over the last decade. The rise and rise of digital marketing and the web have caused thought leaders and innovators in print to reinvent the industry and turn it on its head. 3D printing is an example of innovation at its most imaginative merging closely with the latest technology and trends. Today we won’t talk about 3D printing but the print industry as a whole.
With creative hats at the ready and the unforgettable smell of printers ink wafting around my olfactory memory banks, let us dig a little deeper and see how true this statement is. In a recent article Forbes Magazine they take a look at Print Media versus Digital Media and come up with some great insights.
Its physical, it smells, it excites many senses. Print has a shelf life that lasts longer than all digital advertising. Its green and only uses energy once. We tend to remember print because of its physical existence, we interact with it through the senses, its 3 dimensional nature resonates with us on many more levels than digital media.
Because we can touch it print brings credibility when it comes to decision making. A digital ad can be deemed as spam thus losing its desired effect very quickly. Print is a more passive medium to advertise on. Its non threatening but at the same time credible.
There is nothing that represents a brand better than print. Colours, fonts, styles can all be captured in their finest glory in print. Corporate colours for example are much more difficult to nail down on the web as pantone colours maybe restricted in some cases. The printed brand is now an enforcer of its digital equivalent. It works every time.
Countless research has shown that consumers are more engaged when reading any print material. Websites are often scanned in as little as a 15 second glance. In a study carried out by Alshaali & Varshney in 2005 it was discovered that online users read text on a screen 30% slower than print media.
Less Print Ads
Now here lies an opportunity. More and more digital advertising is bombarding us each day. The average internet user is served 1,707 banner ads per month. (Comscore). There’s a lot of noise out there competing for your attention and as time moves on we condition ourselves not to view them. This is what we call ‘Banner Blindness’. Subconsciously we are ignoring these ads. Our eyes are now becoming filters and only let in what is relevant to us at a particular time.
A successful marketing plan incorporates all channels. Digital is now so important that it can run alongside in a symbiotic way with print. One can promote the other adding to the value of a brand and reaching out at the same time in so many different directions. Finding the right balance is critical and when found can only enhance the user experience both online and offline.