It's 2017- Let's Talk About Print

It's 2017- Let's Talk About Print

Posted at 12:36h in print by James Baker

I’ve just completed a massive project for talent recruitment for one of our Utilities clients and it made me think about the use of print in the tech world we now live in.

It started when we first conceived our ideas to talk to young talent such as graduates and apprentices. These are the Gen-Z archetypes; low attention span, high tech and savvy. So, the answer was to create everything in the digital space, right? Wrong.

Not everything has to revolve around a mobile phone for these young consumers.

According to new research by Business Insider “Gen Z prefers to engage with products at brick and mortar stores to seek product quality reassurance, trust, as well as check out the overall brand experience before buying”.

Also, despite assumptions to the contrary, Generation Z isn’t on board with abandoning the physical space. Another recent survey of 3000 college students in four countries found that 92 percent would rather do their coursework in print, rather than on tablets.

The main reasons students preferred paper books; were the lack of distractions that are available on computers, as well as the headaches and eye strain that can result from staring at a screen.

Now, that makes perfect sense. But what does this mean in terms of what media you use to attract this audience?

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It certainly has to be multichannel. Attracting consumers from where they hang out to get them into the funnel is essential, but it’s not the whole story. Starting by creating content explaining why you’re special and not what you do is a massive factor. This generation, despite their lifelong access to technology, appreciate the tangible reassurance of print media based on how they value physical experiences.

Young people also have a naturally keen nose for inauthentic content. Having grown up with the digital landscape, they value authenticity, in a way that previous generations did not. In a world where web publishing is ubiquitous and misleading content is everywhere, print is generally thought of as more authoritative and authentic.

And, you know what? It’s sometimes the special things – it’s the look, feel and sometimes smell of things, that brings a different experience to the consumer. Being tactile is a completely unique experience compared to something that is ‘on-screen’ and quickly discarded. Printed materials tend to hang around longer and have a ‘special’ quality that means they are kept.

So, don’t believe for a minute that print is dead. We know that done well, a good piece of print, in a multichannel campaign can create amazing results.


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