For many business owners with start-up companies, digital marketing seems to be the easiest, quickest and most successful way to spread brand awareness and pull in more potential customers. But, is this true?

For many years, UK firms have been torn between using digital or print to launch their marketing strategies. To discover how the two marketing platforms compare, printing specialist of UK roller banners, Where The Trade Buys, has analysedwhat print marketing can do for new businesses on a budget.

Print vs. digital marketing in the UK today

To start, you might be asking yourself why it’s even worth thinking about which marketing platform to use — does it really matter? The answer is yes, because the competition is fierce. There are about 80 new businesses launching in the UK every hour, according to a report by StartUp Britain (a national, government-backed campaign), so you want something that’s going to be unique to your business, effectively promotes your services and is cost-effective to push yourself to the front of the race.

Many of us would assume that, alongside the rise of social media and online shopping, digital far exceeds print when it comes to marketing. However, you might be surprised to learn that advertising is big business for the printing sector.Approximately 30%of all printing is for products such as brochures, newspapers and magazines; while 34% is for advertising and marketing products including event programmes and tickets.

Despite marketing taking up a sizeable chunk of the printing industry, many marketers might still think that digital platforms are a safer bet when it comes to the success of a campaign. But amazingly, 80% of users don’t bother to click on any online banner advert they see. Bearing in mind that the 20% that do won’t even convert into a sale, is digital really that good? And is it worth paying the competitive price for the digital space? Print media also appears to beat digital when it comes to marketing in magazines: 63% of UK adults still read magazines (according to YouGov) and only 10% regularly read these online.

How brochures can boost your marketing strategy

Now, we’re going to hone in on a type of print marketing to analyse just how useful it can be for a start-up company. While there are loads to choose from — such as pull-up banners, posters and business cards — we’ll start with the brochure, whichis great for spreading brand awareness and giving your company a professional look for potential customers. To create an effective and attractive brochure, it needs to legibly detail your brand, message and services in short but informative sentences. Just ensure you’ve thought about these essential features to help you whittle down the details and create an attractive, easy-to-read design. These are:

  • Intriguing header.
  • Clear call to action.
  • Professional overall look.
  • Unique selling points.
  • Short, detailed and proofread content.
  • Understandable layout — not confusing.

Once you’re confident your brochure is looking perfect, you then have to consider order quantity. You don’t want to run out of brochures, but you also don’t want to see any go to waste. The more brochures you buy in bulk the less the overall cost in the long-run, but you’re supposed to be on a budget and you don’t want to lose money. Essentially, you must think about how many brochures your start-up needs to save yourself wasting cash unnecessarily while still maximising on your hard design work and outlay.

How direct mail can boost yourmarketing strategy

Direct mail is rarely high on many start-ups’ lists to push their brand and advertise their services — but it should be. Regrettably associated with the term ‘junk mail’, direct mail is ahighly rewarding form of print marketing that could help your start-up excel if used within a marketing strategy. 80-90% of direct mail is physically opened by recipients as opposed to just 20-30% of emails — a win for new companies looking to get their brand across to potential consumers.

Also, in a recent survey;54% of all consumers said that they’d be happy to get direct mail from brands that might interest them. On top of this, 10.7% of the UK’s advertising expenditure was on direct mail in 2009, with over 2.5 billion direct mail coupons exchanged in 2015.

While the world is digitalising, it doesn’t mean we must ignore the clear advantages of print marketing. If you want an effective platform for promoting your brand and advertising its products and services in a personalised manner, print marketing is it.