3 Reasons Businesses Should Consider Integrating Programmatic Printing in Retail and Digital Marketing
For much of the last decade, it has become increasingly important for retail chains and brand owners to integrate digital marketing into all their efforts. But now the pandemic has led to an all-time high of digital fatigue for many consumers. In fact, according to eMarketer, Americans spent, on average, 82 minutes per day on social media in 2020, a seven-minute jump from 2019. With more content at our fingertips than ever before, many are overwhelmed with the number of emails flooding their inboxes.
Luckily, marketers today can utilize programmatic printing, the next level of print marketing automation, in their strategies to help engage with target consumers more effectively – especially in a world where most are looking to cut screen time. Marketers using programmatic printing can easily leverage the full range of promotional print styles: brochures, catalogues, magalogues, customer magazines, brand books, customer newsletters, and more, delivered almost in real time.
Offering the best of both worlds, programmatic printing delivers data-driven targeted propositions with the emotional appeal of high-quality print. By utilizing programmatic printing, marketers can create a more cost-effective, personalized experience utilizing the vibrant colors and imaging only print can produce.
As businesses and retailers adjust to their new routines and marketing kicks into full gear headed into the fall season, below are three reasons they should consider tapping programmatic printing:
Grabs More Attention
Through large scale billboards created by household brands to published magazines, print continues to play an essential role in the everyday lives of consumers. Research suggests it is more effective than digital communication when it comes to delivering a direct message and attracting consumer attention.
Additionally, compared to digital, print has a physical presence. In the language of neuroscience, it's a "haptic" medium, which means people can perceive and manipulate it through touch, creating more connection with the materials. By using tools such as MRI scans, researchers have shown that our brains process printed media differently from digital. Print reaches deeper into our consciousness, even triggering activity in the part of the brain where we assess the value of products.
Considering the number of businesses that use email communications daily, there’s no doubt that there’s significantly less competition in one’s mailbox than their email inbox. According to a 2020 report from Compu-Mail, the average lifespan of an email is 17 seconds, compared to direct mail's average lifespan of 17 days. 73% of American consumers say they prefer being contacted by brands via direct mail because they can read it whenever they want.1
And in an age of information explosion, a great amount of content goes unnoticed. But print marketing can help businesses present their brands in a communicative and meaningful way to reach consumers more personally and directly.
Hooks New Audiences
Similarly, print marketing is an important part of any effective on-ground or guerilla marketing campaign – especially when businesses want to reach people on the streets or target specific demographics such as those who go to a certain type of restaurant or shop. For advertisers, programmatic printing opens doors to many of those previously untapped, non-digital audiences.
The US Postal Service found evidence that we spend more time engaging with print, which increases how much we recall the content. Also, a survey by the Spider Trainers2 revealed that “consumers who earn an annual income of less than $60,000, as well as all shoppers aged 18 to 34, are more likely to say receiving direct mail from a company makes them feel like a valued customer. In fact, 46% of the survey’s total respondents said they feel that way.” This suggests that “the goal with direct mail, whether a postcard or envelope is to engage the recipient, though the difference between personalization and relevance is subtle, it’s important."
Consumers’ reactions across different channels may be hard to predict, but research shows that print ads still matter and break through, as 82% say print is the most trustworthy medium for making purchasing decisions.
Offers an Automated Experience
Lastly, thanks to programmatic print, print is paving its own lane in the automated marketing world. As the "programmatic" label suggests, it combines programmatic marketing, automated real-time bidding for online advertising, and programmatic mail, where a customer's online interaction generates a targeted piece of direct mail.
Programmatic printing is a step towards a more streamlined, cost-efficient ad-delivery process, wherein the right message is displayed to the right person at the right time. This automated technology gives marketers access to a “premium” inventory the same way it would for digital inventory and takes advantage of all the benefits that the print medium offers.
In all, it links marketing automation platforms with the highly automated digital print production workflow. The same up-to-date customer information that sends an email or triggers a banner ad is used to generate a personalized print file that delivers emotionally appealing print to consumers — usually within 24 hours – ultimately delivering a seamless process and result for businesses and consumers alike.
Make an Impact with Programmatic Printing
Programmatic printing is beneficial for businesses as it offers marketers a way to automate specific processes of ad delivery: audience targeting, programmatic guaranteed and engagement measurement. It also eliminates, or at least reduces, the need for a human salesperson, which could be an attractive proposition for cost-conscious executives.
While email marketing alone may be the most used and cost-effective tool to engage with customers, the importance of direct mail should not be undervalued. A campaign that combines both electronic and print elements provides a much stronger, more impactful, multi-touch message, especially in today’s increasingly digital world.
Tonya started her career with Océ North America and then Canon Solutions America 9 years ago as a marketing specialist. Her background has been B2B marketing over the past 20 years. She has been in the graphic arts industry for 15 years starting at Hewlett Packard. Her first role on the Canon’s Production Print Solutions Marketing team was as a customer segment specialist focusing on the graphic arts market. Tonya now manages the Go To Market team to support all outbound marketing initiatives for the Production Print Solutions Business.