Who says print is dead?

Printed materials are one of the oldest forms of marketing, but people today view it as a dying medium. There has been growing stigma around it as an “old school,” “antiquated” marketing tool as the so-called “digital revolution” has kicked into full gear.

Who can blame them.

Most of us now opt to read the news and our selected magazines via our phones and tablets. Email and texting has replaced the need for people to communicate via snail mail or even over the telephone. And who needs to print photos anymore; you can share them over the web.

Marketers have recognized this and jumped on the digital trend. And why not? Digital media is cost effective and marketing pros can more easily track consumer behavior. Plus, it is easy for any company or individual to reach a segmented audience in minimal time. The list of advantages continues to grow as software and algorithms continue to evolve.

It may look bad for print marketing tools. But you would be surprised when you look deeper. By no means is print out the door or gone for good. In fact, all of the statistics tell a different story.

In 2014, U.S. companies spent an estimated $44.5 billion on direct mail marketing – yes, we are talking billions. This range has been steady over the previous five years, too (“Direct mail marketing spend in the U.S. 2014 | Statistic“).

For every $167 spent per person on direct mail, companies earn approximately $2,095 in goods sold. This is an average of a 1,300 percent return on investment (“25 Direct Marketing Statistics Prove Direct Mail Works“). In regards to reaching new customers, 39 percent of consumers are more likely to try a new business after receiving a direct mail (“Ten Print Marketing Statistics You Should Know“).

With everyone shouting at us over the web, digital media has become impersonal. Every response seems like a pre-programmed message. This is where snail mail can make a bigger impression. Since people are sending less mail, it has become a less saturated media. People either prefer or are more likely to read content that is printed. In a survey by Epsilon, 73 percent of consumers said that they preferred receiving communication through direct mail. Consumers said that they liked how you are able to save printed pieces and revisit the information at a later date.

While we nicknamed it “snail mail,” 79 percent of consumers are actually more likely to act or read direct mail immediately compared to the 45 percent with email communication (“Direct Marketing“). Another surprising fact is that consumers between 18-34 years old are more likely to read mailed offers instead of emailed campaigns (“Direct Mail: Alive And Kicking“). This is huge when it comes to companies trying to reach Millenials.

Philosophy developed a marketing campaign for our client American Appliance to communicate with its customers on a regular basis and to encourage them to keep their appliances running at peak performance. Each mailer was unique in both the execution and concept to keep customers engaged. Overall, the campaign has resulted in sales that were five times the marketing investment.

Don’t be fooled by all the shiny new gadgets or the next big social media site. Communicating with your customers is key to building and maintaining brand loyalty, and print marketing tools have become the stand-out in a world saturated with the real-time, right-now content. It’s safe to say that print marketing tools are far from being a thing of the past.

Denver Direct Mail Campaign



25 Direct Marketing Statistics Prove Direct Mail Works. (n.d.). Retrieved January 29, 2015

Direct mail marketing spend in the U.S. 2014 | Statistic. (n.d.). Retrieved January 28, 2015

Direct Mail: Alive And Kicking. (n.d.). Retrieved January 29, 2015

Direct Marketing. (n.d.). Retrieved January 29, 2015

Ten Print Marketing Statistics You Should Know. (n.d.). Retrieved January 29, 2015

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