First of all, print is not going away any time soon. While yes, digital marketing gives you the ability to be a bit more nimble and oftentimes allows for better measurement for ROI, don’t count out print marketing just yet. There is still a place for this tactic in your overall strategic marketing plan; just be sure you’re following a few best practices. If you’re currently doing print marketing or are considering it, you want to make sure you’re making the most of your print marketing efforts. Read on for some helpful hints and best practices.

Your printed materials should complement your website, not compete

Whether you’re creating a brochure that serves as an overview of your products or services, or you’re creating individual flyers or “slicks” for your sales team to use, be sure that the content of the printed piece complements the text already on your website. While a printed piece should stand alone, that doesn’t mean it should contradict what’s on your website, or any other marketing message anywhere else, such as email, etc. When it comes to your marketing efforts, be sure it matches, or at least is consistent.

Keep in mind who your audience is for print marketing

audienceYou should treat your printed piece as you would treat any kind of content marketing effort you do. Don’t push out unwanted, unhelpful information; provide information people are looking for about our company. To do that, keep your target audience in mind when creating the content piece. Who is the decision maker and what information would resonate with them?

Define your expectations for the printed piece

Yes, print marketing can be expensive if you simply send out a mass mailing with no goal in mind and no measurement in place. Before you create a piece ask yourself what you are trying to accomplish when leaving this piece behind? A phone call? A meeting? A purchase? Be sure to include a call to action so people know what to do next (visit the site for more info, call, etc.). If you identify the purpose of the piece, as well as how to measure the success of it, you’ll likely be pleased with the outcome. This really goes for any printed marketing materials:  postcards, brochures, sales slicks, etc.

Keep your marketing voice consistent

Not only should the information you put in your printed marketing complement what’s being communicated in other marketing channels, all of your marketing should have the same “voice”, so look at your website, your print material, your social media, etc.; it should all sound the same (formal, informal, conservative, funny, whatever). Your marketing “voice” needs to be consistent across all platforms. The last thing you want to do is confuse people by presenting your company’s personality in different ways on different marketing platforms.

Be concise in your marketing

People have a very short attention span. Most consumers are “skimmers”; they skim through the content to see if it’s of interest to them. Too many words and people won’t read the content piece. Only give people the information they need. If more is needed, encourage them to visit the website or call.

Let them know how they can contact you or get more information

Depending on the purpose of your printed piece, this could be a top of the funnel, general overview piece, or it could be very specific content about a very specific product or service. Regardless, help them understand how they can get more information or get questions answered. Reference your website, social channels and a phone number. Make it easy for them to take the next step.

contact usGive them several ways to reach your or learn more about you

Just like people consume information in different ways, people want to interact with a prospective vendor in different ways. Don’t limit them to a phone call or a website address. Give them several options to reach you (phone, email, social media, website). That opens the door to continued dialog, but you have to make it comfortable for them to do so.

Give them a reason to hang on to it

This is especially useful if you’re creating a mass mailing piece, or a piece you’re handing out at a trade show or conference. Make the printed piece “sticky”; give them a reason to hang on to it. Historically, that used to be a printed calendar. That still works for some, but for others, it might be helpful tips, a checklist, a resource list, a local sports team’s home game schedule, whatever. It’s a reason to keep the piece even if they don’t feel they need your product or service at the moment.

Print marketing is still a very viable option for small business marketing. Making the most of your print marketing efforts increases the chance of success. Need more insights on how to make print marketing work?  Check out

Patty Hughes
Follow Us!