TRMC Power of Print focuses on the power of the letterbox

The latest Power of Print webinar, facilitated by The Real Media Collective, focused on how printed materials for the letterbox can and are returning a higher return on investment for brands as the digital world becomes increasingly confusing, busy and unpredictable.

Mark Davies, managing director, Whistl (Doordrop Media Ltd), used this week’s webinar to discuss how the UK letterbox print market bounced back after COVID in regard to letterbox parcel deliveries, leaflets and flyers.

Davies shared his international learnings and came live from the UK for the webinar to talk about how the letterbox rebounded in the UK and how print provided brands a much needed physical touch-point as lockdowns wore on.

The Power of Print webinars are held each Wednesday at 11am. To view the recording and see the Class Notes, please click here.

In summary, Davies provided an overview of how the letterbox channel held up last year during the extraordinary times of COVID.

“We didn’t see COVID coming but we realised there was evolution ahead and that is why we developed our business in the way we have but the last 14 months have been extraordinary both for our business and the globe,” Davies said.

“The immediate impact was pretty much all negative. There was carnage this time last year.

“But one thing was really importrant was the UK Government decided communication through the mail box was important and key to keeping the company connected. So we stayed open and while we slowed down, we didn’t stop.”

He said research shows a printed piece of marketing can live in a home for an average of seven days and that research also shows it can reduce the costs per lead by 36%.

The woes of digital

Davies pointed to ‘viewability’ of digital marketing as a key issue for the channel, along with risk of fraud, brand safety issues and the prevalence of fake news.

“There are massive issues around data in the UK the Cambridge Analytica scandal swept waves around the world, and now with COVID we have the anti-vaxxers,” he said.

There are also questions about digital ad spend and whether it is effective. He pointed to American multinational consumer goods corporation, Procter and Gamble, which has cut its digital advertising spend by $200 million and experienced no impact on sales.

He also pointed to trust issues with Facebook and social media and said digital advertisers face the risk of having their ads positioned against material that may not be what they want.

Privacy concerns of digital marketing and whether data gathered by cookies is being used illegally is also a concern, he said.

Power of Print
Mark Davies referred to this slide to explain that the cookie is crumbling for digital advertising.

Print effectiveness

Davies said it is time to get real and have a more evidence-based view of what is actually driving effectiveness.

“Analytics does not give us insight into what is driving those interactions and it is very lazy, easy advertising. But they don’t really tell you what is working, they just get in the way and try and interpret,” he said.

Davies said letterboxing achieved significant success last year in the lockdowns and pointed to a number of examples including a campaign run just before Christmas by an online fashion retailer.

Davies said we need to dispel the myth that print is not just for older people as tech-savvy millennials are pretty good at using ad-block technology. Home owners and families are also big users of letterbox marketing, he said.

We must use the word ‘algorithm’

“We’ve got a huge opportunity which has been highlighted by the pandemic. Audiences are responding to our channel in ways they haven’t before. We have done targeting for years we have been using algorithms for years, so we need to embrace this language because it is our language,” he said.

“We know marketers love a dashboard so portray your results in the same way, that will cut through the attract the attention of the advertiser.”

Next Wednesday’s Power of Print webinar features Jayne Paramor, sustainability partnership manager, APCO. Jayne will discuss packaging – what we need to know for the future of sustainable packaging.

To register, click here.

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