Submitted by: Sam Upton September 30, 2020
With digital taxes for online platforms about to be passed on to brands, companies are having to reassess their marketing mix. We look at why print media should be part of your marketing mix.
This year, the first of November will mean many different things to many different people. Around the world it’s World Vegan Day, in Mexico it’s the first Day of the Dead celebration, and for Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, it’s his 60th birthday.
Whether one of the world’s most important people in the world of digital technology will be taking the day off or not, it’s likely he’ll be keeping an eye on the changes Google are making to the way they charge advertisers who use the platform. Following the UK government’s introduction of the Digital Services Tax in April, from November, both Google and YouTube will charge its clients an additional fee of 2%. It may not sound like much, but for many advertisers, it could add thousands to their marketing budgets and boost Google’s bottom line in the UK by £120m.
Right now, companies are frantically reassessing their marketing spend, juggling already stretched budgets with established strategies having to change following another government announcement. The finely tuned balance of digital, social and print is being looked at carefully, with any new charge or tax likely to shift that balance towards a different platform or medium.
With uncertainty a key aspect of every part of life, many people are losing trust in online advertising and especially social media. A recent survey by Ofcom, the UK’s communications regulator, found that traditional media sources such as newspapers are both the most-used and most important source of news and information. Almost nine out of ten people (87%) turn to traditional media as a source of Covid-19 information, with those turning to social media decreasing from half (49%) at the start of the lockdown to 37%.
Over the past few months, a curious thing has also been happening to direct mail and door drop. While volumes haven’t been increasing, the amount of time people spend with them has, with double digit increases in how much consumers are interacting with and sharing their mail.
JICMAIL’s Q2 2020 analysis found that the average piece of direct mail was interacted with 4.58 times – a record high since JICMAIL began tracking mail activity in Q2 2017. The report also found that the length of time mail stayed in the home also increased, with the average piece of direct mail remaining live for 8.5 days, and door drop almost seven days.
“Marketing budgets are under more scrutiny than ever before,” said JICMAIL Director of Leadership and Learning Ian Gibbs in an article for Mediatel. “Maximising campaign efficiencies while retaining impact is crucial, and the household and individually targeted nature of door drops and direct mail respectively point towards an increasingly important role for mail in the multi-channel mix.”
Print media is a compelling choice
As well as effectiveness, marketers are also becoming increasingly aware of the other key advantage of print: its strong sustainability. While the global issue of single-use plastic is front-of-mind for many people, what’s less well known is the problem of e-waste – the amount of old devices discarded around the world.
The latest Global E-Waste Monitor report states that 53.6 million tonnes of e-waste was thrown away in 2019. Of that amount, just 17% was collected and recycled. By contrast, the latest European paper recycling rate has just been announced as 72% – an increase on the previous year.
When you add the effectiveness of print to its sustainability, then throw in the element of trust and physicality, it presents a compelling argument for marketers considering their options for 2021.
This November it’s likely Tim Cook will receive a lot of birthday cards – not many of them will be by email.