Shout it from the Mountaintop: Print is ALIVE!

I suppose it is not wise to use the word “evangelical” in an election year. But I’m gonna do it anyway.

Folks, it is time to get evangelical…about print. Right now! Here is what I mean.

I got a rare opportunity to be a grown up and go out to dinner with my husband and another couple on Friday night. Yes, in a blizzard, and yes, I walked 20 blocks in high heels in six inches of snow. But that’s a story for another blog.

My husband’s friend chose the restaurant, Quartino, and one of the reasons he chose the place was because, “I think it’s really cool that they give you a postcard when they bring the check.”

Now this might seem like a small thing, but it’s not. There are literally hundreds of restaurants in Chicago we could have eaten in, and he chose that one in part because of a postcard that probably cost that restaurant $.50 or even less. And you know what that means?

Print makes a difference.

And we all need to tell stories like that to our customers and prospects. This is exactly the kind of thing that I mean when I talk about selling your ideas as a part of what you bring to the table. It differentiates you and makes you stand out from all the other print salespeople out there that are talking about price and quality.

So this is your homework for this week. I want you to think about a more unusual way that a company can use print to directly affect sales. (Like my restaurant example). And, I want you to build a prospecting plan around finding companies that would benefit from your idea.

Then, I want you to put that plan in motion, tell your stories with unbridled enthusiasm, as if your life depended on it. Because for print, it does.

Now working as a consultant, Kelly sold digital printing for 15 years so she understands the challenges, frustrations and pitfalls of building a successful sales practice. Her mission is to help printers of all sizes sell more stuff. Kelly's areas of focus include client recovery, retention and acquisition, and marketing communications projects.
Kelly graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in Political Science and, among other notable accomplishments, co-founded the Windy City Rollers, a professional women's roller derby league.

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  • aspireforbill

    I’m with you, Sister Kelly!!! I believe!!! I believe!!!

  • Bruce Brankle

    The beauty of direct mail is in the shelf life. So many times I will see an email or a link and not be able to find it when I need to eat, travel or utilize whatever service I liked. With print I put it in my car or with my keys and next time I go out there it is reminding me what I want or need.

  • Kate

    Quartino is one my favorite places and probably a perfect spot to spend a snowy winter’s night.
    Now, I’m off to think of how to apply this challenge as a B2B printer…

  • Teresa Leite

    Two Thumbs up for Print. Printed marketing pieces are a tangible and interactive tools. Think outside the box, in fact, if it has a few sliding doors, a bay window and glass roof on it, the possibilities are endless. Let’s choose to
    be heard and educate our customers through our creative ideas.

  • Pete Levine

    Amen, great post!! I appreciate your post Kelly, i’m enlisting ;)! As the white noise of the many varieties of digital media postcards, brochures, and mailers are a great way to break through the clutter.

  • charlie

    Interesting story but we need to remember it was a "cool" postcard. We tend to fall in love with processes, but we need to keep in mind, no matter what the channel or medium it is the "wow" factor that cuts through the clutter. If this was just a two color post card on 12pt stock with a boring graphic or message, would Kelly have traveled through a cold Chicago January blizzard just for some pasta? Still have to bring some grey matter to the party.

  • Lynda Kiikvee

    Kudos to you Kelly!! You don’t stand alone!!

  • David Leskusky

    Well said Kelly. I just came back from the PODi App Forum and there were a ton of great examples like this. The bottom line is that print is still a powerful marketing channel and becomes even more effective when it’s integrated with other channels.

  • Lorne Havisto

    Awesome Article – Preach it Sister! :-)

  • Elaine Neiss

    Great story Kelly. Especially like the part about the high heels. Curious what the postcard was all about. Was it a postcard with a photo of the restaurant that you could send to someone which would potentially generate more business for them?
    As a printer, we need to think of ourselves as solutions providers. We know what works and how to do it and we need to be sharing that knowledge with others.

  • AlfredoNegri

    Hello Kelly,
    are now 30 years working in the printing and communications, I read your article, I agree completely with what you write, in a time like this we are going through, we have to be to stimulate interest in our customers and to find points of union between the traditional media (print media, traditional media) and new trends, I think a mix of these technologies will allow us to still get good rewards.

  • Lisa Query

    Great article! Keep up the vigil!

  • Jeff Howell

    Absolutely. I love the YouTube vid from the guys over at Pazzaz that scream that they love printing. No matter how much digital media explodes, there will always be the need for a tangible beautifully printed piece to put in someone’s hands. And it’s all of our jobs to make sure that message keeps going. Nice work, Kelly…

  • Jim Olsen

    There is a great organization out there that’s sole mission is to keep print alive: