How to Combine Your Print and Digital Marketing
By: Rachel Pollard 03/19/2015
In the age of digital media, many people would have you believe that traditional advertising (such as print) is completely obsolete. But the reality is that print marketing continues to thrive and is still incredibly necessary—especially when it’s used in combination with digital.
In fact, print and digital marketing are much stronger together than when they’re used separately. Here are a few tips for creating a marketing campaign that’s stronger than the sum of its parts.
1. Use print to connect people to your web marketing
Print mediums (such as direct mail) are typically viewed as more personal and unique, which can help direct audiences to your web media who wouldn’t normally take notice. If you’re not already promoting your web presence in your traditional media campaigns, you’re missing out. A Burst Media survey suggests that print ads are significantly effective when it comes to encouraging engagement with a brand’s social media presence.
Getting audiences from your print ads to your web content is easier than ever with the advent of QR codes, NFC and augmented reality. Incorporating technologies such as these into your posters, brochures and other printed materials allows audiences to instantly access your website or even video ads for your company on Youtube.
2. Use web marketing to direct people to print ads
This is a less common tactic that’s only applicable in certain situations, but it’s useful when you want potential customers to go to a certain location, such as your brick-and-mortar store. For example, consider creating posters that feature a special daily promotion or a code customers can use to receive a discount. Then, use a web ad to help direct people towards that poster’s location.
You might also allow audiences to digitally sign up to receive print materials in the mail, such as a newsletter or information booklet. Since print collateral can’t simply be deleted or dismissed with a click, it’s harder to ignore and often lasts for a longer period of time, so these provide something unique that an e-mail newsletter can’t.
3. Use consistent branding across both mediums
Using web and print marketing in tandem works best when it’s clear that both forms of marketing are part of the same brand. It reinforces your identity and lets your audience know what they can expect from you, which ultimately gives you more followers and a stronger customer base.
Consistent branding doesn’t just mean using the same fonts and colors (though that’s a good start). It can also mean using similar shapes when it comes to the medium itself. If your website has an angular look that makes heavy use of diagonal lines, for example, you might want to choose a presentation folder style with diagonal die-cut pockets.
4. Show off your web testimonials in print
Testimonials are one of the best ways to establish trust with your target audience, and social media platforms such as Facebook and Google+ have made it easier than ever to collect positive testimonials and reviews from the web. Give your favorite ones extra exposure by incorporating testimonials into your brochures, folders, signage and other printed marketing collateral. Testimonials are particularly effective in direct mail marketing; it’s a more personal mode of communication, so it calls for a personal appeal. And few things are more personal than a recommendation from a fellow consumer.
The ideal marketing mix will make use of both printed and web materials in healthy proportions, but neither will reach their true potential unless they work together.
Do you know of other techniques for synergizing print and web marketing? Please leave your thoughts and ideas in the comments below.