June is such a popular month for weddings that it got us thinking about an increasingly common marriage in the marketing world – the one between print and digital marketing. While the rise of digital marketing may have some marketers thinking that there's no place in their marketing mix for print initiatives, the increasing competition for attention in the digital space means that opportunities have opened up for effective print marketing once again. In fact, according to the Direct Mail Association, 65 percent of consumers of all ages have made a purchase as a result of direct mail.
So, how do you bring this power couple together for marketing success? Here are our top tips:
1. Be social. Social media is such an effective digital tool that it only makes sense to connect it to your print marketing efforts, and this can be done in a few different ways. You can make your direct mail recipients aware of your social presence by including your social handles in the marketing piece. You could also use hashtags within the piece to encourage social engagement. For example, if the direct mail is a printed invitation to a charity event, you could include a hashtag on the mailer that people can use on social media to share that they are attending the event and spread awareness about it. Depending on the message and purpose of the piece, you could also showcase content or promotions from your social pages to help attract new followers.
2. Drive traffic. Beyond just listing your website's URL on printed materials, use a call to action to drive your direct mail recipients there. Landing pages are especially helpful in these situations because you can easily tailor the content to your recipients. Just be sure to use a URL that's short and easy to type, so it doesn't take a lot of effort on the part of your recipients' to get to your site. QR codes are another option to unify your print and digital marketing efforts. These codes are easy to scan with a smartphone QR code reader and can be printed on almost anything your marketing team can dream up.
3. Leverage influencers. Influencer marketing, or using key leaders within an industry or among a demographic to spread a brand's message, has grown in popularity alongside social media marketing. Print marketing can be a great way to tap into this unique channel by sending select influencers an inventive mailer that they are invited to share on social media – and are excited to do so. For example, a furniture company could send home design bloggers miniature replicas of their new living room line that the bloggers could then creatively use in blog posts and on social media.
4. Focus on content. Content marketing is most often thought of as a digital marketing tactic, and when people think of print marketing, they commonly think of sales messages. You can defy both of these conventions – and produce more effective print collateral – by focusing your pieces on more informative, rather than salesy, messaging. You could try out this tactic through a call to action to download a white paper or view an educational video on your website, or by printing part of a blog article and then inviting recipients to continue reading online.