Print in renaissance says Salmat

Medium sized companies in Australia will be looking to printing and mailing for marketing in 2017, as Salmat’s Mid-Tier Marketing Index (SMMI) lists letterbox drops, print catalogues, and magazine advertising as the top three new channels marketers plan to invest in this year.

While the top three channels that saw the most investment in 2016 were online, offline channels are expected to experience a renaissance in 2017. When asked what channels they plan to use in the next 12 months that they do not already use, letterbox drops (14.9 per cent), print catalogues (12.4 per cent) and magazine advertising (12.4 per cent) came out on top as the new channels mid-tier marketers are planning to invest in this year.

Benjamin Hillman, head of marketing at Salmat says “It is not surprising to see mid-tier marketers turning to letterbox drops and catalogues, considering how popular these channels are with Australians. Catalogues reach around 21.8 million Australians every week, and 58 per cent of readers do end up buying afterwards. Letterbox campaigns are now more cost-effective and relevant to consumers than ever, thanks to the invention of online platforms that allow for granular targeting based on target market location and demographics. However, the best results happen when letterbox is linked to digital and vice versa,” Hillman said.

He says, “You cannot say print is a declining medium when people are looking to it as a new method.”

Hillman says for printers to take advantage of this surge, they need to be compelling about selling the mixed model, thinking holistically about the power of print combined with digital.

“Talking about how we can deliver the best results as a combination is going to be powerful”, says Hillman.

He says more marketers are realising that the best campaigns do not eschew print instead of digital, or vice-versa, but leverage the strengths of the mediums as a duo.

“You can now upload the printed materials digitally, which lets you see what people are focusing on, what has the best impact, and what people are clicking through on. This can then be fed back into the design of the printed product.”

Salmat says while mid-tier companies are prioritising investment towards digital marketing channels, more than a fifth of respondents had invested in printed catalogues and letterbox drops in 2016.

The three print-based advertising methods topped the list for new investments planned, beating out email, television, SEO, SEM, online, social, and events.

SMMI also notes that 59 per cent of businesses will increase marketing spend in 2017, while only 4.6 per cent had plans to decrease spend.

Hillman says, “I think it is a resurgence, and there is an increasing balance between offline and online. They are looking at what is cost effective, and what their competitors are using well.

Salmat says the SMMI draws on research conducted in December and January by SSI on behalf of Salmat and that there were 250 mid-tier businesses surveyed.

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