Although it has become clear that the average marketer is viewing print and digital assets completely separately, even at odds with one another, this type of one-dimensional concept can hold a brand back from truly making waves in its industry. On the flip side, companies that focus on creating synergy between their digital and print marketing processes will likely be able to reach a larger, more diverse audience, while simultaneously getting the brand name in the mix for a wider variety of channels.
Now, first and foremost, remember that recent studies have indicated that print marketing processes such as traditional mailings are still highly effective when they are crafted in such a way that aligns with both corporate objectives and recognized best practices. The same goes for digital but, as many marketers know, the initial planning and development of print-based items will need to be a bit more on point, as the margin for error is somewhat smaller.
These types of differences between digital and print marketing efforts should not be pushed a side of overlooked, but rather embraced by individuals who are taking part in the strategy itself. Playing to the strengths of each is the first step toward creating an entirely integrated and consistently successful marketing program, and this begins with the simple knowledge of how to use each autonomously and in concert.
Here are a few tips to get you rolling on these matters:
Let's say you have a new product or service that you're ready to begin marketing to your current and prospective clientele. This will be an exceptional opportunity to begin piloting an advertising program that brings together digital and print collateral into one integrated pursuit. Rather than trying to re-invent the wheel, begin building out the objectives of this specific marketing initiative, then outline which items would be best served in physical formats, and the others that are better-suited to digital channels.
It is often difficult to maintain consistency of voice across content, social media, email and other digital marketing campaigns, and even more so when working to link print assets into the equation. As such, make this a high priority, developing all of the various communications and production components in unison, then reviewing the verbiage itself to ensure that the voice maintains its form regardless of which medium the recipient chooses to use.
Make one know the other
Although you do not want to necessarily get caught in a trap where your digital and print advertisements are doing little else that talking about one another, it is definitely worth making it known that both are in the mix. Consider including a statement somewhere in each the digital and physical iterations of the documents and other communications that alludes to the availability of the opposite medium.
Create a multi-dimensional storyline
You will certainly want to learn to walk before you can run with respect to building out a cross-platform marketing initiative, but that does not mean you have to wait so long to fly. For the first advanced step in optimizing these strategies, consider having the print and digital communications play off one another, so that each tells a story autonomously, but the two combined provide a more robust image of the initiative at hand.
Again, extensive planning from the outset and coordinated distribution of the various documents and communications will need to be a priority to make sure it all is understandable in the eyes of your prospects.
Once you have these projects in motion and out in the market, consider running evaluations and assessments incrementally following the initial distribution. First, get a baseline of what your most recent pursuits had entailed and how they performed, then begin to build a measurement system that is more relevant to print-digital hybrid initiatives. This will provide invaluable information to marketers and others involved regarding how well-received this first pursuit was, as well as what needs to be done to improve the next time around.
With plenty of planning, research and support from a qualified provider of print products, you can quickly begin taking your company's stature to the next level.