print-based marketing

So you think you know about how marketing channels perform? A new infographic published by Print Power sheds new light on the effectiveness of print-based marketing and highlights some surprising statistics.

The Print Power infographic looks at three different elements of print-based marketing:

• Engagement levels
• Effectiveness
• Campaign ROI

Even experienced marketers might be surprised at some of the statistics highlighted in the infographic.

Print is engaging

The infographic begins by quoting former CEO of WPP, Sir Martin Sorrell. He said, “We’re starting to see with traditional media, particularly newspapers, a bit of a pendulum swinging back because the market will realise they are more powerful.”

In fact, a 2017 study by Lumen found that newspaper ads are viewed for 2.5 times longer than the average digital ad. What’s more, when we read print-based copy more of our attention is directed solely at that medium.

Print is effective

The infographic also highlights how marketers’ perceptions don’t always match with the reality of channel effectiveness.

It cites a 2018 Re-evaluating Media study by Radiocentre and Ebiquity that show the top five most effective channels as TV, radio, newspapers, online video and direct mail.

This contrasts with the top five as advocated by advertisers and agencies: TV, radio, paid social, online video, direct mail. While TV and radio might be way out ahead, this study makes it clear that funds currently being spent on paid social advertising could be better spent elsewhere.

Print boosts campaign ROI

Of course, Print Power isn’t advocating a switch to the sole use of print-based media. Every marketer knows the alchemy of creating the right marketing mix can’t be limited to one channel.

However, perhaps we do need to reconsider the components of the mix.

Mark Ritson makes the point in Marketing Week that we “must feel some sympathy for news media, which are perceived as having little to any impact on ROI. In reality, they offer some of the most significant campaign lifts for those clients that can look beyond the bullshit of the ‘death’ of the news media and see both the continued potential of print advertising – the campaign of the year so far, KFC’s FCK ad, was a newspaper ad, lest we forget.”

The infographic goes on to cite a 2017 Newsworks IPA Databank study which found that campaigns that include print are 67% more effective at delivering new customers than those without.

While it is true that marketers should assess which each medium brings to each different campaign, this infographic makes it clear that our perceptions of what works need backing up with the statistics.