5 Common Print Myths Debunked

Printing press in process

There are rumors about absolutely everything. From food to celebrities, and yes, the printing industry included. It’s easy to create a rumor. One person says something and it spreads, and even if it is not true, eventually it is accepted as the truth. If you are not an industry expert, you may not know what is factual and what is a rumor, so we are here to address that. Here are 5 common print myths debunked.

Reduce, reuse, recycle being written on a square piece of paper.

1. Myth – Print is not environmentally friendly

One of the most popular myths out there is that print is not environmentally friendly which just is not true. The print industry is often unfairly criticized for being harmful for the environment, however it actually aims to protect the environment in various ways. Paper can be recycled and it is a renewable resource. Paper most often comes from managed forests or farms that continue to replant trees on a daily basis.

An interesting fact that may surprise many people is that paper-based marketing has a smaller carbon footprint than digital marketing. This is because carbon emissions are only produced once during the creation of the process, whereas carbon emissions occur every time someone uses a digital device.

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There are also a few things you can do as a consumer to help make your print jobs even more eco-friendly. Consider using stock made from recycled paper and encourage your recipients to reuse, recycle or even compost the materials instead of tossing them in the trash. When it comes to ink, you have environmentally friendly options such as soy ink that help avoid adding harsh chemicals to your material. Lastly, you could consider ditching ink altogether and opt for blind embossing or die cutting, which requires no ink. 

2. Print marketing cannot be personalized

Many people assume print marketing cannot be personalized and you have to mass produce blanket messages. Thankfully, technology has come a long way and there are processes that allow for personalization such as variable data printing. This method allows you to get as personalized as you want for each individual in your campaign, as opposed to sending the same message to every single person. When you have more detailed information on a customer and have already built up a relationship with them, it is important to serve them content tailored to where they are in their customer journey. Thankfully, print marketing does indeed allow for this kind of personalization that will only benefit your business, so don’t let that print myth stop you!

3. Print is expensive

Another common print myth is that it is expensive. There are many cost-effective ways to order your print marketing materials, and the larger your print campaign, the lower the cost per item. It’s important to take into consideration how large your audience is. For instance, if you are only targeting a small portion of people, a direct mail marketing campaign may not be the most cost-effective option. However, if you are targeting upwards of a thousand people, the cost per piece of mail would significantly decrease, making it much more cost-effective. 

According to WebpageFX, the cost for a direct mail campaign can fall anywhere between $50 to $7200. Alternatively, pay per click marketing and email marketing can cost upwards of $4000 to $10000 initially. That is a major difference. As long as you strategize and choose the option that makes the most sense for your needs and audience, you can absolutely produce a print campaign for a very reasonable price.

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4. It is not as effective as digital marketing

It is easy to fall for this one, especially in this digital age. However, print marketing is as prevalent as ever. According to numerous studies, including one done by Two Sides, it was found that 70% of Americans say they prefer to read things on printed paper instead of on a digital screen. On top of that, 67% said they like the feel of print media over other mediums. 

An effective marketing strategy will take advantage of both print and digital means. Relying on one over the other will result in you missing out on significant audience groups, as not everyone is online and not everyone will be checking their mail all of the time. You can also do things like add QR codes to your print pieces to steer your audience online to your website and social media, and encourage those print users to interact with you online as well.. Print and digital really go hand in hand when used strategically.

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5. It’s interchangeable with digital design

While you want to make sure your messaging is consistent across print and digital materials, your designs are not necessarily interchangeable between the two methods. Many web designs are not “print read” or “print friendly.” If you were to design something for digital and then print it without making any changes or optimizations, you will end up with a design that does not look how you intended. This can be the result of many factors, but one of the biggest factors is the color profile you use.

If you are designing for the web, you are likely designing with the RGB color profile, whereas printed materials should be designed using the CMYK color profile to reproduce color. The differences can lead to discoloration, resulting in inconsistent branding materials. A major pillar of a successful marketing strategy is brand awareness. An important component of brand awareness is consistency. Inconsistent branding, even if it is mismatched colors on some marketing materials, can lead to a less than seamless experience for your audience.

Another aspect to pay attention to when designing for print vs digital is resolution. Web designs tend to be lower resolution, with a standard of 72 dpi. If you were to print images at this resolution, they would be very pixelated and low quality. You want to make sure any images and graphics you print are at least 300 dpi for high quality printing.

Printing can be overwhelming, but if you find the right company that will take the time to communicate with you, you can have a successful experience. Printivity has experts on staff to help with any step of your print process, from design questions to technical questions. Reach out at any point at 1-877-649-5463.


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