Print Still Critical in the Marketing Media Mix

About a month ago, I reported on a study done by InfoPrint Solutions that indicated a preference for print among magazine readers. Your favorite mags may be thinner than they once were as advertisers redirect some of their print spend in other directions. But as it turns out, that may not be a bad idea.

Epsilon Targeted has just released a new study examining the effectiveness of various media. Given the gloom-and-doom reports proclaiming the demise of nearly all types of print, one would expect such a study to show how consumers are dissing print for everything electronic. But that’s not the case at all. Print, in fact, is still a favored medium, especially direct mail.

The Epsilon study is not the first to show this, and it reinforces the message that print—especially timely, relevant direct mail—is still a powerful medium. The data show direct mail to be considered more trustworthy and private than any other channel, and that the best results come when its integrated into a cross-media campaign. The findings also showed that the key factors behind media preference include convenience, trust, robustness of content and environmental values.

According to the research, the 2010 data also “…validated North American marketplace fragmentation, that is, consumers are using a greater variety of sources to meet their information gathering needs.”

Wide demographics

This reinforces the notion that direct marketers and print providers must use a fully integrated, data-driven, multi-channel approach to get the best results from their campaigns. Regardless of the demographic, marketers need to understand their audience and place added emphasis on those channels that consumers rely on most.

The study spanned 2,569 consumers aged 18 to 55 and above. It asked about preferred methods of gathering and receiving information about health issues, prescriptions, OTC medication, personal care, household and food products, travel, insurance, charitable causes, and financial and household services. Direct mail was the hands-down leader in each, with the exception of travel, where the Internet had a slight edge.

Noel Ward is editor-in-chief of packagePRINTING magazine, published by NAPCO Media. He can be reached at nward@napco.com.
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Comments
  • http://gloriaevans gloria evans

    Interesting.

  • http://Todd Todd

    Excellent article and great info! We have embraced multiple technologies here at Intelligencer to bring print into the mix. Being a “multi-solution provider” is what our clients need in a competitive market.

  • http://StevenAmiel Steven Amiel

    Everything that you say is true. However, I think the next game changing opportunity for printers will be adding automated marketing solutions to their mix of integrated marketing techniques. The software manufacturers you mention about do a good job of including multiple touch points around a print job. that means they have new . The automated software group ie., Eloqua, Marketo and MMI Edge take that same campaign and stretch it over months enhancing the revenue and increasing the potential for success.