After two years of eyes riveted to smartphones, computers, and television screens to pass the time while stuck at home, the urge to disconnect from the internet, and reconnect with real life can be felt everywhere… even in marketing strategies!
Printed matter, in various forms, is once again finding its place inside major brands and companies, here and elsewhere, dovetailing perfectly with what was put in place during the major shift to digital.
“It’s a matter of complementarity with the internet, rather than duality,” Amélie Côte, Executive Director of Maison 1608, Solisco’s creative agency says, confidently. Still, more than ever, she believes that print matter will enable brands to create a stronger relationship with their readers/consumers, to best express the creativity of a brand and its image and, ultimately, to establish an unshakeable relationship of trust and credibility with its target readership.
Yes, it’s true: Paper can do all of that.
In Praise of Paper
A magazine, a brochure, a catalogue: that’s paper. It can also be a flyer, cardboard packaging, personalized stationery. Paper is a creative tool, because of the clever words it contains, because the content on the page is relevant, because page design is clean, and for the images selected.
“To read something on paper is to provide oneself a moment of total, delightful disconnection. Say goodbye to smartphone notifications, endless email in the in-box, and the urge to scroll nonstop on social media. We focus entirely on the content,” Anne-Laurence Jean, Content Advisor at Maison 1608 rightly notes. For her, paper helps readers retain information, but also emotion, more readily. “Printed matter is engaging and reliable, and there’s nothing more credible,” she adds.
Better still? Print matter gives companies more control over the content and the ways in which it will be presented — in contrast to the Web, where credible content is too often diluted by an excess of content, and by the algorithms that decide what the reader should see.
It’s true a brand’s identity can also be built on solid foundations by emphasizing the brand’s colours and logo on attractive paper products, but also by including relevant keywords, important concepts, and the company’s values. Indeed, following this recent Content Marketing Institute study, we can say that more than 70% of users prefer to learn of a brand through editorial content rather than a traditional advertisement. That’s a great reason to get started!
Here’s the big question: Can magazines be printed in a way that is respectful of the environment, sustainably and responsibly? Yes, absolutely!
There are several initiatives in place which make the creation of a responsible paper product possible. For example, use of recycled and recyclable paper, participation in reforestation programs, and moving to choose vegetable inks over mineral-based inks.
A printed product also ensures great longevity, if a few extras to be retained can be added, such as recipes, intineraries, posters, etc.
Some Supporting Statistics
In this 2018 study, British people voted magazines as being the most reliable, trustworthy source of information, from among all communications platforms.
According to this Reuters study, Generation Z, the Zoomers, spend approximately 1 hour per week reading magazines, and favour printed material, because that helps them stay focussed. Younger generations still spend up to three hours per day on social media, consuming content in more casual ways.
According to Finances Online, readers spend an average of 20 minutes reading a paper publication.