Over the past month or so, a number of consumers throughout the United States have received catalogs containing hundreds of seed options. Gardening enthusiasts are looking to fill their 12-by-12 nurseries with colorful, tasty produce.
The rise of specialty crops
According to the Augusta Free Press, people want to regard their yards with a sense of attraction – the more vibrant and rich it looks, the better. Tony Banks, a commodity marketing specialist for Virginia Farm Bureau Federation acknowledged that people are favoring variety more than anything else, the source explained. For example, many boutique tomato plant breeders are selling fruit that turns a brilliant orange or multicolored hue when it ripens.
"With today's renewed interest in vegetable gardening and greater access to gardening information and seed sources, there is a demand for these so-called designer crops," said Banks, as quoted by the source. "Color sells, so plant breeders and seed companies are offering a great selection of colors such as yellow and boldly striped tomatoes, purple and yellow radishes, pink pumpkins and more."
Direct mail enables fast decision-making
The layout and design of the average catalog enables people to compare and contrast a dozen or so vegetables at once. Print manufacturers have made an effort to develop materials that are more visually appealing, making it easier for readers to view information regarding specific plants as quickly as possible.
Although some people prefer to take their time when flipping through a catalog, many consumers have gotten caught up in the pace of the times. Digital media has certainly influenced the manner in which individuals make decisions.
At the end of the day, customers are used to receiving thorough information quickly. The easier it is for them to absorb what's on the page, the more favorably they'll regard the brand that created it.
A popular practice
Even though Restoration Hardware isn't in the produce industry, its practices are a testament to the success of print marketing. Entrepreneur referenced the company's 3,300 page catalog, which contains numerous "source books" that provide information on items ranging from refinished wooden tables to antique gas lamps.
Restoration Hardware CEO Gary Friedman asserted that the materials "cannot yet be replaced by the Internet," as quoted by Entrepreneur. Since the company sent its first 84-page issue to consumers in 2001, it has expanded the length of its catalog considerably.
One would believe that the Web would enable Restoration Hardware to market thousands of products more effectively than a direct mail booklet. Entrepreneur acknowledged this criticism, but asserted that Restoration Hardware actually allows people to browse for products more efficiently because it's easy to find the item order section in the catalog.
In light of the practice, Restoration Hardware informed investors that it anticipates revenue growth to increase significantly in the second half of this year. The company has the numbers to prove it. In Q1 2014, comparable-store sales rose 18 percent.
Print marketing provides specialty brands with the ability to display their wares in a comprehensive, unique manner that other retailers are largely neglecting.