Does Paper beat Digital Marketing?

Because we get the majority of our data from our mobiles, computers and tablets, digital marketing seems to run the advertising world. However, the advent of digital ads does not mean paper marketing has no power. In fact, paper marketing actually has several advantages over digital.

Despite this enormous migration to electronic media, neuroscience research shows that paper-based content and ads offer special advantages in connecting with our brains.

Here are many of the benefits of paper vs. digital marketing.

lady with dark hair in ponytail on sofa at home reading a leaflet distributed through the post


Tangibility immediately creates a stronger psychological response in the reviewer than digital can. Paper takes up space, and the physical interaction engages more senses than merely sight.

For example: paper rustles, engaging sound, and can carry its own scent to stimulate memory later. Also, touch marketing uses textures and various finishes to engage this sense for a company’s benefit.

The brain automatically interprets paper marketing as more “real” and give it greater meaning. Paper marketing will also be better connected to memory by using these senses.


white clock showing the time and white cup on wooden desk

Paper and physical marketing has a higher review time than digital marketing. Hanging onto a leaflet stimulates the brain, and if the content is engaging, it will be harder for the recipient to pull away.

Also, paper has the benefit of not being as obnoxious as many pop-up video or audio ads. These can make a viewer close them down as quickly as they appear on-screen. Handling paper won’t make a reader want to put it down just because the colours are too bright.

Another benefit of touch-based marketing is that it causes more brain activity in areas tied to value and desire. More interesting textures such as foil and varnish or type of paper can also heighten a sense of ownership. If the ad doesn’t get mistaken for junk mail at any point, the recipient will hang onto it longer. The longer they possess your paper ad and interact with it, the better they’ll recall your brand and return to it for a sale.

This is not to say we cannot expect a mass exodus from digital marketing to direct mail and door drop leaflets, but it does prove that print-based advertising still has a significant part to play in the marketing plans of advertising managers across the land.

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Print and Digital Marketing in Perfect Harmony

The future will be digital and print working together. And your best bet is mixing media in your marketing campaign to achieve the very best results.

Any good direct mail piece or door drop leaflet must also have an online presence.

Using print ads effectively for brand marketing and strengthening memory will level up your digital sales.

Paper and physical marketing can do more for your brand and business than you might expect.

Despite the popularity of print in getting a sales message across, many people feel comfortable ordering from a website, and print can drive this valuable traffic to an online order or enquiry form.

Is your business based in or around Northamptonshire and looking to reach a local audience?

Has this article on the persuasion of print tempted you to trial a print marketing campaign?

Get in touch with us and let us make sure your leaflet distribution campaign achieves the exposure your business deserves. For more information about our cost-effective leaflet distribution service.