“The problem is not the medium, the problem is the message, and the fact that it is not trusted, not wanted, and not needed.” This is the view of the noted Prof. of Operations & Information at the famous Wharton School of Business regarding online advertising.
“When I am online, looking for information, the ads are in the way and I block them out.” Bill Thompson on BBC News
The fact also is that much of the advertising dollars spent on internet advertising fail. Just look at the Face Book IPO and the further fact whereas they have lost major advertisers who were able to see, or more to the point not see any worthwhile results for their online expenditures. I have found other online properties from experience to also be a waste of money.
Yes, there are ways of making online marketing (not advertising) work for you but the problem with that is one must also be or become a social marketing expert, which is still a new phenomenon to many companies. You can hire expensive “so called” online marketing specialists and there are good ones out there as well such as ZD Design out of San Diego, but as a rule you can count on; don’t trust or put any faith in SEO or online marketing gurus when your product or service depends on it as it still is like the wild west out there as it pertains to that crowd. Don’t get me wrong, social bookmarking has its place as part of the branding process and making Google happy as you show off page “relevance”, but the impact is just not the same nor as predictable as print.
There still are many reasons to hire a commercial printing company in order to get your message out for your products and services and the results, unlike when you gamble with online advertising or overly depend on social bookmarking. Let’s take a look at some of them:
With printing vs. online advertising in a head to head, printing wins hands down. If you had the money to wage both campaigns at once your new motto would inevitably become; “have you hugged your printing company today”? In order to have online advertising work you need tons of traffic and tons of traffic means spending tons of your money. It is far easier to wage smaller test campaigns or campaigns in general with the help of your printing company than to do the same on the internet. To give you an idea of the cost of an ad on Google Ad Words, it would cost you $14.00 per click to be on page one in Google for the phrase “Catalog Printing”. If you use the direct marketing adage of 2 percent return on your efforts, 100 clicks or hits would cost you $1,400.00 and 2 percent return would be 2 catalog customers and that is $700.00 off the top of the catalog printing by the printer. That is not a very cost effective way to do business, especially in my view, that this would be for a shorter run catalog with minimal profit, as the more sophisticated and larger run buyers are going to opt for searching for and discovering a company’s website from an organic placement. Organic listings have always implied a better quality of search rather than a paid for position in my opinion.
Printing and Direct Mail:
Here is an area where you can depend on the tried and true with a printing company that also offers direct mail marketing. With printing and mailing you can target your audience based on many different types of demographics from buying habits, income, location, industry or simply saturate a few carrier routes within one zip code. Targeted marketing allows you to really pin point which your buyers are and unlike online advertising, the 2% return has been verified over decades of success. Also the more you target your audience the more this percentage increases.
Age Of Reader:
While readership is not as high as it once was among younger readers printing your message still works when aiming your advertising in their direction. The quality of the printed ad or printing and direct mailing is perceived to be of higher quality content that similar on the net. The bottom line; any scammer can have a website. As the audience becomes older tradition kicks in with many beyond their youth years still like the feel of a newspaper of printed magazine in their hands. Many folks read at work and on breaks leave the computer and pick up something in print to read, whether a magazine, book, or newspaper. Lasting Impression, Lasting Use:
There is a compelling and lasting affect with the printed piece. A magazine, catalog or book will have a lifespan that not only is a long one, but also may pass from hand to hand. There is nothing like reaching behind oneself at the office for a readily handy catalog in order to reference what you need for your business. A well written magazine offers much more in depth information about a subject than an online advert. Many advertisers, although not touting it in their rate schedule, will let you know through the sales person, that an article can be had along with their paid advert. With commercial printing, the magazine, book or catalog is also portable. The printed magazine or paper “bookmarks itself” and is available anywhere in the house, office and even the john.
Quality Of Content:
Too much material that is popped out online is never a match for the quality of a magazine, book or catalog from the printing company. The thought, planning and time that goes into the printed piece is far greater than the recent online article or advert.
Nothing beats the organized content than a well laid out magazine or even a quality catalog printing in order to allow your products to be presented in the most digestible and sales inducing fashion. This can be done with sections for product or service types as well as tabbing for ease of use and indexing of product or service types. The ease of reference in a catalog or magazine many times is superior to one’s website where the location of items can be confusing and hard to find, or the simple copy of a small and expensive online advert.
In the final analysis I believe print wins hands down. Yes, you should hug your printing company as you are getting more “bang for the buck” than with online advertising. However for the purpose of branding; an online presence is of course necessary as an adjunct to the more traditional and time proven ways used over the decades.
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