Digital marketing is often seen as the cool younger cousin of traditional print advertising, but that doesn’t mean there’s no place for some good old ink on paper in your marketing efforts. Whether it’s a display ad or some editorial content, combining the forces of digital with print is often a winning formula.

You know the taco ad where the family are arguing about whether they should have hard or soft tacos and the little girl cleverly points out they could have both? Working across print and digital marketing sometimes feels like you’re dealing with that crazy family steadfastly arguing for their own preferred medium.

Like the happy family who settle on a mix of soft and hard tacos, successful marketing campaigns often utilise both print and digital ads to get their message out there. There is no ‘best way’ when it comes to marketing because there are always so many different factors involved.

Print’s not dead; it’s not even sleeping

When Facebook released a print magazine we knew for sure that print was alive and well. Plus scientists have been saying that the human brain seems to absorb more from a physical printed page than a screen. So the new age fools who think everything should be digital are only fooling themselves.

People still read physical books, magazines and newspapers. Perhaps not as their only source of news or entertainment, but still at a rate that makes it worth being seen in. Print works well to deliver messages that require some time to absorb, and there’s also a certain prestige to being seen in print.

We’re not quite done with paper; 82 per cent of Australians check their letterbox everyday. How often do people actually get to zero emails in their inbox? When once we’d ignore half the contents of our physical letterbox, the tables are turning to a point where we simply can’t give our attention to everything that is presented to us in digital form. This can make a printed item a welcome novelty.

Don’t ignore the opportunities that digital presents

So there’s a time and place for print, that we know, but that doesn’t mean any smart business is rejecting digital entirely. You’re not dreaming when you think people are spending an awful lot of time looking at smart devices or staring at computer screens. Attention is on digital platforms so make sure you have a presence there.

Digital advertising gives you the freedom to experiment a little more — you can post or remove an article or advertisement with relative ease if it’s hosted on your own site. Even paid advertising on other sites doesn’t last forever so you should be a little more creative with your ads.

One big advantage of digital advertising is the ability to track how well your advertisement is performing. Analytics can tell you how many impressions and clicks your content is getting, but don’t let this be the whole story. Sometimes repeated exposure to your brand is what gets customers over the line.

Why can’t we have both?

Good question! And in most cases you can and should have both. The more your customers see you and get to know your story, the more likely they will be to trust you when it comes to parting with their hard earned cash.

There’s good and bad to both print and digital advertising. At the end of the day it’s all about reaching your audience in the best way possible. Print ads in topically irrelevant publications are next to useless, and digital marketing can miss the mark too if the target audience can’t find it or it hits them at the wrong time.

With any marketing campaign, you need to do some research and think about what you’re trying to achieve and how best to make it happen. While print and digital both have their own clear benefits — like a hard and soft taco — there’s no need to pick just one.

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