A Different Look at Print on Demand

By | October 21, 2011

There is a lot of talk in the marketing world these days about inbound versus outbound marketing. Here are some stats from the 100 Awesome Marketing Charts and Graphs (free download) from HubSpot:

  • 61% of B2B marketers are shifting their budgets toward inbound marketing such as social media, virtual events and marketing, and SEO.
  • More than half of marketers increased their inbound marketing budgets in 2011.
  • The average budget spent on company blogs and social media has nearly doubled in two years from 9% to 17% (from 2009 to 2011).
  • Inbound marketing costs 62% less per lead than traditional, outbound marketing ($143 for inbound marketing vs. $373 for outbound)

What does this mean for print? Print is still a critical part of the marketing  mix. It will remain critical for lead generation and other outbound pushes. At the same time, these are numbers are a reality, too. So while your clients want to continue to print, how they use that print might be changing.

Instead of sending a prospecting letter, for example, you might want to encourage your clients to beef up their SEO, draw people to their websites, and let them request a printed follow-up materials on demand. Instead of sending a calendar or poster, they might draw people in through social media, then encourage them to input their personal information on the online request form and receive a personalized version instead.

There are lots of ways to use print as a follow-up to inbound marketing. Stirring that into the marketing mix might be a great way to encourage your clients to start thinking differently about print.

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4 thoughts on “A Different Look at Print on Demand

  1. Adam

    Good article. I agree that there has been a big increase in inbound marketing, almost to the detriment of outbound marketing. The important thing to remember is the tone with which you engage with a client. Depending on the industry, this can still be best acheived through print, often in conjunction with online.

  2. Dick Rossman

    Heidi, you talk about ways to promote print as a follow-up to inbound marketing, but customers need to be drawn to a website first in order to generate the inbound interest. So using a personalized print direct mail campaign to get people to go to a website would be another way to improve your inbound marketing communications.

  3. Joe Manos

    Great post Heidi.

    There’s no doubt that marketers are shifting their marketing mix to include more interactive touches from a variety of media. Forrester research reported that marketers are shifting 60% of their budgets from traditional marketing use cases to interactive and 40% of that will come from a reduction in traditional direct mail.

    Two important considerations of this transformation is that most printers aren’t aligned with the marketing decision makers so they aren’t at the table discussing the opportunity for an integrated approach for success.

    Second, print as part of a multichannel, integrated approach is delivering excellent results – much better than traditional approaches.

    Today there are many different avenues available to the marketer but marketers leveraging an integrated approach across all media use cases are out performing those working in silos.

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