Working with marketing departments is a regular facet of business for many print providers. Your task is to give professionals the materials they need to keep their customers interested in an era that allows shoppers to change loyalties with every purchase. How can you market your services to marketers? It involves convincing your clients that print is still the method of choice. Prove that your physical offerings can do what digital ads cannot and you can win a spot on their teams.

Color as a differentiator
Do you operate inkjet printers that enable you to create fast, efficient and affordable color documents for your client base? If so, WhatTheyThink contributor Barb Pellow has an important tactic for you to try: Highlight the fact that you offer color printing. The author stated that color has become a major focus area in the marketing field, with a proven ability to make buyers interested.

Pellow cited Kissmetrics research revealing that color advertisements are much more memorable than those in black and white. Furthermore, visual information is the major element that determines whether a buyer will go ahead with a purchase. These two facts together add up to a potent blend: If you can give marketers print products in sharp, vibrant color, you will be giving them an effective outreach tool.

What kinds of campaigns can benefit most from an infusion of color? Pellow cited direct mail, explaining that InfoTrends studied this form of marketing and determined that people respond more to mail-outs that contain color images instead of black-and-white pictures or plain text. If you can use color on envelopes, that might also make a great value-add for marketers. Pellow noted that 49 percent of customers are moderately or majorly influenced to open direct mail messages that have color images on the envelopes.

Pellow added that when you are convincing marketers of the value you can provide with your color offerings, you can't really sell the process as a new or novel approach. The use of color has been a marketing collateral feature for years, and chances are your clients have thought about it before. The author gave an alternate method, though: You can remind marketers that it is now more economical than ever to get a campaign in full color, one that can really wow the recipients.

If you can offer a run of personalized marketing messages, this would be another major point to emphasize. Pellow noted that marketers are looking for ways to make consumers know they are being spoken to one on one, rather than as part of an impersonal mail blast. By providing this kind of customized campaign for your partners in marketing, you can become a valuable part of their respective ecosystems, one that will hold on for years to come.

The importance of direct mail
The above suggestions contained a heavy focus on direct mail, as it remains a convincing and helpful marketing method. That said, it is a bit out of step with the digital revolution that has played out in communication over the past two decades. If your marketing clients have decided that they are leaning away from physical campaigns, some facts about the continued power of mail may help them make the decision to stay with your offerings and try a new outreach effort in full color. A Huffington Post piece by contributor Scott Taylor recently rounded up a few of the stats that may help you make this argument.

For instance, Taylor noted that 33 percent of people remember products best when they learn about them through the mail. Making that strong an impression on a sizable slice of the population is nothing to sneeze at. Taylor also noted that a direct mail-out is a great brand awareness tool, despite the fact that so many companies have migrated to social media – or maybe because of that fact. Standing out in the digital world may mean going analog. 

When it comes to affordable and effective print-based marketing campaigns, you can be your clients' best resource. Your job is to convince them of this fact. Print providers will remain relevant as long as people value physical marketing collateral, and all signs indicate this is still the case. In a sea of digital outreach, your partners can be proud of the distinct campaigns you print for them – in full color.