Print: The magic medium

Print media consumption has declined, and digital consumption has increased. The way we should now be communicating with our customers is clear…or is it? Print is still the magic medium that drives the message home to customers.

Print is dead, apparently. In the past 6 years print’s share in media has decreased from 9% to 3.5%, and print powerhouses like Heidelberg have seen their share values plummet. Eek.

Digital shift

Statistics from digital and mobile arenas don’t make for much happier reading for the print industry either. With 19% of the world’s population already an active Facebook user and an increase of 19% in mobile information consumption since 2009, it seems pretty obvious which way the world is moving.

Information overload

However, there’s a silver lining around the digital cloud. Over the past 10 years people have been suggesting we’re now capable of absorbing more information. Because there’s now more information available to us than there ever has been before, our brains are adapting to be able to consume it. Technology is making it easier to digest, and our busy lifestyles are making it essential for us to be able to take it all in. But because we’re seeing all this information, it’s all starting to look a little bit the same. Information overload is meaning the more information we absorb, the less chance it has to stand out.


Technology is more advanced than it’s ever been, but as it goes faster and faster it can have a tendency to leave the people behind. Personalisation gets ignored in favour of production. That’s where print can play a part. We can engage with people on a one-on-one level, highlighting quality without diminishing quantity.


55% of brands are increasing their spend on creating content. On average, 28% of their marketing budget is going into this area, but how many of their customers are actually engaging with it? Wouldn’t it be nice if that content actually stood out? Instead of pushing more and more, how about if we focused on better and better? In a recent survey carried out by Royal Mail’s MarketReach, 40% of people said they felt more valued by a brand when they sent them something printed, as opposed to emailing them. 55% said it made them feel better about the business. And consumers don’t just open mail, they interact with it. On average, advertising mail is kept for 17 days.

But how effective is it?

As a direct result of receiving a relevant and timely piece of printed direct mail, 43% of people download some information, and 87% are influenced to make online purchases. Overall, 86% are driven to connect with the brand in some way. Print is not dead – it’s evolving. If we want to be successful in a digital age, we need to think differently about how we approach things. Digital content is no longer just an addition, it can be the main channel. But with print you can deliver real quality, add extra value and give your digital content a unique advantage.


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