Media Usage Survey: Print Stays Strong

By | March 31, 2016

Every year, Target Marketing surveys its readership to find out what media they are using and where they are spending their marketing dollars. Here is a look at five takeaways specifically as they affect multichannel and print.

1. Digital media continues to grow.

As we would expect, digital media show the highest levels of growth when it comes to future investment. The fastest growing areas are online advertising (54% of readers planning to increase investment), email and social media advertising (49% planning to increase investment, respectively), and social media engagement (55%).

2. Direct mail continues to hold its own.

In a world dominated by digital, direct mail continues to hold its own. In fact, it does more than that. It continues to grow, with 25% of respondents saying they plan to increase spending on this channel this year. In addition, 11% plan to increase spending on insert packages and the DR (magazine, newspaper) space.

3. When it comes to how readers slice up their budgets, print maintains a huge chunk of the pie. 

The top spending goes to online advertising, with 37.1% of the budget. But print (including direct mail, magazines, newspapers, circulars) comes in not too far behind, with 28.5%.

4.  Personalization is on the rise.

Whether in digital or in print, 44% of respondents say they are planning to increase their use of personalized content as part of their strategies to increase ROI. Twenty-seven percent (11% increasing, 16% staying the same) are focusing specifically on variable-data printing.

5. Use of direct mail for acquisition and retention marketing is up.

In 2015, 54% of marketers responding to the Target Marketing survey were using direct mail for customer acquisition. This is up to 58% in 2016.  For retention, this rose from 51% to 55%.

It’s important to remember that print is a mature channel, so it makes sense that the largest increases in spending are coming from digital channels. The fact that there is any growth in print — let alone significant growth in some categories — is noteworthy.

Print is still a good business to be in.


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