How to Give Print a Digital Reflection

Neuromarketing research has shown that print creates stronger, longer lasting impressions on the brain than digital communications. Its tangible presence, compared to something more ephemeral like email, holds space in both a physical and psychological sense. Yes, print – particularly in the form of direct mail – stands out, and it impacts purchase behavior.

But to consider one channel to the exclusion of others in today’s marketing landscape would be foolish. Every communication with your customers should be viewed from a high-level, omnichannel perspective. A recent comment by Postmaster General Megan Brennan spoke to this point, “We’re trying to [establish] mail as the focal point in an omnichannel marketing campaign. Mail works, we know that, and when you give print that digital reflection it enhances the likelihood of customer engagement.”

Hmm. Digital reflection.

Brennen was referring specifically to the USPS’s rollout of digital mail (another topic for another day), but let’s take that description one step further.

Getting a printed piece of mail physically into your customer’s hands creates strong impressions in the brain. It establishes an anchor for your brand experience. So why not start there? Start with print.

Viral Instagram Photo

This photo from Instagram user @tizzia went viral in March.

Much like the viral Instagram photo which challenged you to figure out how many girls are in the picture, your goal as a marketer should be to amplify your efforts. Imagine your message reflected endlessly, repeating and echoing in the mind of your customer. It all begins with something real and physical, then it’s virtually reflected from there on out.

How do you do it?

  • Start with something physical, a direct mail piece for instance. Make that your focus. It’s the anchor in your customer’s brain – they’ll remember it. You’re establishing a one-to-one link.
  • Build on it with digital reflections. Digital components in your omnichannel campaign will recall the original physical experience for your customer. Keeping it one-to-one you can add emails, household IP targeting, landing pages and more to the campaign.
  • Consider circling back with another mail piece to cement the experience. Or even a phone call.

It’s certainly not always easy to craft a successful omnichannel campaign. But try starting with print, the brain’s anchor, and then reflect infinitely out from that.

At Compu-Mail, helping customers develop omnichannel campaigns is one of the things we do best. Contact us for a one-on-one conversation to discuss how you can reach your goals.

Download our free eBook: Achieving Personalization Through Variable Data Messaging

About Karen Renzi

Karen Renzi is the Director of Marketing for Compu-Mail. Karen's experience bridges both traditional and digital marketing, including managing her own online marketing and web design firm for 10 years. She merges her knowledge of both worlds through Compu-Mail's focus on integrated, targeted marketing.
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