Remember all of those forecasts about the demise of print? They haven’t come true. Like most offline channels, direct mail took a hit during the COVID-19 pandemic, but it is still remarkably effective. Research by PFL found that, even during the pandemic, marketers were 18% more likely to see “good” or “very good” ROI when direct mail was in their marketing mix than when it was not. 

Let’s look at five reasons why print continues to thrive, even in our digital and multichannel world.  

  1. Recipients can’t miss it. If your email doesn’t get opened, your message never gets seen (which happens more often than not). With postcards, clear envelopes, windows, and exterior envelope printing, however, they see at least part of your message—if not all of it—as soon as they take the piece out of the mailbox.  
  1. It’s visually appealing. Online graphics can be lovely. However, a beautifully printed piece will blow away your screen graphics every time. 
  1. Print amplifies the message. According to the Online Marketing Institute, it takes six to eight marketing touches to generate a viable sales lead. Repetition is critical, and print is an essential part of the mix. 
  1. Print causes people to buy. Marketers once thought that with the growth of e-commerce, printed catalogs would fade away. History indicates the opposite. Studies find that consumers who receive printed catalogs are more likely to make purchases at the retailer’s website than those who do not. 
  1. Consumers trust print more. Unless an email comes from a known brand, people are skeptical of claims made by email alone. Because print incurs a production and mailing cost, it carries a weight and authenticity that digital marketing does not. People continue to trust messages communicated in print. 

Print remains irreplaceable in today’s “what’s in it for me?” world. While e-marketing is a necessary component in any multichannel marketing campaign, print carries benefits that online channels can’t touch.