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Every so often, someone makes the statement that “Print is dead.” Despite the technological advances in communication and online marketing, print is still one of the most effective forms of advertising. It’s highly trackable, easy to analyze and provides a clear cost/return accountability.

Print is tangible, engaging, and inspirational. Print is all about consumer engagement. Most people prefer to read print communications rather than reading from a screen. Magazines and flyers have a longer shelf life and can stay in restaurants or offices for months or even years, while Internet ads can disappear into cyber space at any time.

A successful print campaign involves more than an actual printed piece. It begins at concept—an idea that helps you sell your products and ends with a printed piece that is created and distributed effectively.

The real value in print advertising is in brand awareness and perception, and in getting your message or special offer to your prospective client. By using direct mail, flyers and catalogs arrive unexpectantly, interrupting the reader’s thoughts and reminding them of your brand. The customer doesn’t have to go out searching for your online presence, you have made it simple by sending them something tangible that can be viewed over and over again.

A well-produced printed flyer or catalog offers a sense of legitimacy. It assures the customer that the company truly exists. Searching for companies online can be discouraging. The infinite number of popups and banner ads saturating the web can be overwhelming to someone looking for inspiration or trying to find a solution to their problem. Using print to drive target customers to your website produces more effective results than when customers stumble over your website, unintentionally.

Print is one of the best ways to complement your online presence. Research reveals that 31% of shoppers have a catalog with them when they make a purchase online. To extend your brand and enhance your website, you can add a digital version of your printed catalog to your site.

When you really want to stand out from the crowd, combine your print campaign with a mobile app to bring your products to life. Apps are perfect for demonstrating the use of a product. Nearly 81% of shoppers use an app to educate themselves on products before they purchase them.

The best marketing campaigns involve print, web and mobile apps. This strategy usually offers the best return on investment and renders the best response rates.

  • Paul G

    May 3, 2016 at 6:46 pm

    I love your article and I love print but… It’s highly trackable?????? Seriously..
    This is the biggest problem of the industry.

    • Margaret Crum

      May 6, 2016 at 11:56 am

      Paul, thanks so much for your comments about the article. We at CFI love print, too, and wanted to offer some answers to your question about it being highly trackable. Many customers use special codes on the back of their printed piece that connects to a specific sales flyer or they apply custom codes to items that allow them to track the sales for that item back to a flyer or catalog. We also recommend tracking sales of items in the printed piece in the weeks following a direct mailing.