Despite the digital takeover, print is still thriving in the marketing mix. Typically, companies rely on print collateral to talk about products and services. However, its value in boosting brand recognition shouldn’t be overlooked.
Here’s how you can leverage print collateral to build brand awareness among your target audience:
Your Brand Recognition Relies on Making a Good First Impression
Consider the ways print may be your prospect’s first impression with your brand. They may get a piece of direct mail, or grab a business card at a trade show, or see your signage at an event.
The question is this: What is the first thing you want your prospects to feel about your brand?
Some companies use color to evoke certain emotions from their audience, such as blue to build trust or red to spur urgency. High-end brands may include raised lettering or luxury paper to establish themselves as upscale and exclusive.
Print collateral lacks the auditory sense, so consider how to play to your audience’s other senses to get your message out.
Speak Your Brand Through Images
While we’re on the note about visuals in brand recognition, consider what types of images can best reflect your brand. Some companies may use a funny or emotional image to “humanize” themselves and seem less like a corporate identity. Others may opt for a similar style of images to establish brand consistency (HelpScout has perfected this art with their blog and newsletters).
How can images define your brand? Think about the qualities that make your brand special, whether it’s your sense of humor or professional edge.
Create a Graphic Style Guide
It’s a good time to have established graphical guidelines to help your design team stay on brand when creating new collateral. You could outline specific font requirements, Pantone color palette, and a visual hierarchy that details which elements should appear on each piece of printed collateral.
Brand Your Copy
Do you know the tagline for Wal-Mart, McDonald’s, or Subway? Most likely you do. That’s because these companies made it a point to drive their brand into your mind every time you viewed one of their advertisements, whether it was printed on your receipt or packaging, or voiced on a television or radio commercial. It would be tough to find a Fortune 500 company that didn’t take brand recognition seriously.
Every piece of your printed collateral should include your branded copy. Think of it as an extension of your logo. Each time your prospect sees your tagline, they’ll have something else to associate with your name. Yes, a tagline can be as powerful as a logo when it comes to brand recognition.
Tailor Your Print Collateral to Your Audience
If you’re at a cocktail party and want to get someone’s attention across the room, how would you do it? Wave? Shout “Hey!”? Or would you call out that person’s name?
You’ll likely have more luck if you’re specific in your actions, both at a cocktail party and with your printed collateral. And while you don’t have to put a real person’s name on your marketing pieces (like Coca Cola did with their Share a Coke campaign), it helps to tailor each campaign to specific interests and attributes.
Variable imaging adds personalization and increases the ability to build relationships and trust with your potential customers.
For instance, a company who sells bedding could create a series of marketing pieces targeting new parents, college students, and newlyweds. Each of these speak to specific audiences, and would likely use vastly different copy and images to get the point across. Yet these three campaigns are likely to be much more effective than a generic advertisement that speaks to no one, even though everyone needs bedding at some point.
As a result, your audience segment will associate you as a company who gets their individual needs. Using the bedding store example, college students may look to you for other dorm room needs because you spoke directly to the college segment. New parents might seek additional baby room essentials since you clearly offer items for babies.
Print is far from dead, especially given its versatile nature. From direct mailings to billboards to posters to business cards and more, there’s no shortage of options when it comes to creative print collateral uses. If you have questions on how to make your print collateral pop, consult with one of our design experts today.