Print Marketing: Dead or Alive?

Print is not deadWhen my colleague Linda Pizzitola shared her guest post “In Print We Trust: A Valued Branding and Marketing Tool” on my blog, it reminded me of a French commercial I’d seen online a couple of years ago. Titled, “Le Papier Ne Sera Jamais Morte” (Paper Will Never Be Dead), you can view it below and enjoy a good laugh.

In today’s digital world, it seems one might think that print media has gone by the wayside, but I disagree. Take a look at your email inbox each morning and be honest, are you opening each message that comes your way?

With so many emails pouring into our inboxes, I think consumers are once again welcoming the opportunity to open their mailbox and hold a printed piece in their hands. Where once they complained about too much “junk” mail, I believe they’re now paying closer attention to what appears in their “snail mail” box.

It’s a good time to be taking advantage of print and implementing direct mail campaigns as part of your marketing mix.

In her piece in the June issue of The Review, designer Connie Tran wrote “It may look bad for print marketing tools. But you would be surprised when you look deeper. By no means is print out the door for good.”

Here are some statistics that support the idea that not only is “print is alive and well,” but it’s getting results:

1. During a survey comparing the effectiveness of direct mail to e-mail advertising in the United States as of August 2014, 22 percent of respondents stated they were more likely to purchase based on direct mail than on e-mail advertising.

2. 92% of young shoppers say they prefer direct mail for making purchasing decisions. The number across all ages is 67 percent, second only to newspapers at 69 percent. More digitally inclined shoppers are actually trusting print marketing more.

3. 56% of customers find print marketing to be the most trustworthy type of marketing. If you want to build trust, the marketing statistics suggest you should invest in print.

4. Printing Industries of America found that 67% of online searches are driven by offline messages, with 39% of shoppers making a purchase.

5. Shoppers who receive a direct mail piece directing them to an online site spend an average 13% more than those who do not receive a printed piece.

6. Print delivers a higher response rate compared to email. The CMO Council found that the average response rate for emails is 0.12%, whereas the average response rate for direct mail is 4.4%.

7. According to Mail Media Centre, while 11% of marketing emails are opened, the opening rate is 91% for prospecting direct mail.

While these statistics support the ongoing existence of print, it’s not to say that print is the only medium worth implementing. In addition to points #4-7 above, in his blog post, “What Paperless Revolution?” Bill Michael reported that 76% of small businesses state that their ideal marketing mix is a combination of digital communications and print.”

Integrating offline efforts, such as print, into your marketing mix can make a big difference in leading your prospects online and converting them to customers.

What do you think? Is print dead or is it alive and well? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below because I’d love to hear from you.

Debra Jason

Marketing & writing with heart, not hype at at The Write Direction
A recipient of the “Creative Person of the Year” award, Debra educates and empowers creative solopreneurs and enthusiastic business owners to create a lifestyle business that provides them with the flexibility, fun and freedom to do what they love. She also inspires you to communicate your marketing message in a way that captivates and converts your prospects into loyal, raving fans - even if you have been struggling with how to transform your ideas into words in the past.


  1. Print has beauty from design and flow: The web has become a jumbled mess of eye straining, jump from this to that, read here, share with you, like me, twits and clicks. I see the tremendous value of the web and its relevance. And, yes, there are sites that are incredible works of art, form and function but it is not the norm as you see in this very page. Why, because the web is opened up to everyone to creating content. That is a good thing. However, ink on paper with stunning visual and organized content, designed by a skilled and gifted eye, provides visual thinking and comprehension that is missing from the web. I know Joe would agree that if you took the same ‘content’ on this page and printed it on a page it would have more communicative impact.
    Elise Forsyth Mort recently posted…Six Reasons You Really Need to Purge Your Social Media AccountsMy Profile

    • Hi Elise, I like what you’re saying about print, its design and flow. There are some captivating websites online, but there is still something wonderful about holding a printed piece in one’s hands. That’s one reason I prefer reading a physical book vs. an online version.
      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts here.
      Debra Jason recently posted…Writing to Your Prospects’ State of AwarenessMy Profile

  2. Integrating print marketing into online marketing is a comprehensive way to look at the industry. Knowing that so many online searches are driven by offline messages is useful, too. Thanks.

  3. Very nice article printing with some good tips. Very timely reminder about using a range of media for promotion of your business.


  1. […] of my favorite videos is Le Papier Ne Sera Jamais Mort. When I first saw it I wrote a blog post, “Print Marketing: Dead or Alive?” highlighting some statistics that supported the idea that indeed direct mail was alive and […]

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