Is Print Media Dead?

Recent developments in design and the growing influence of technology has made some huge waves in terms of how people interact with media and how marketing efforts are directed. It wasn’t all that long ago that print was the most successful way of delivering marketing material. Today, that is no longer the case and there are some who would even go so far as to say that print is no longer relevant.

Digital media has become the primary way to distribute content, and there are a huge number of benefits to using it. In contrast to print, people can use digital publications to reach a global audience and to target specific demographics in a way that is so much narrower and more specific than can be achieved with print. In addition, online marketing can allow you to evaluate the performance of your campaigns well with detailed analytics - vastly different to how traditional marketing works.

One of the more efficient ways that digital marketing can work for distributing brochures for the property industry is to use Rightmove, Zoopla, FloorPlansUSketch.comand other property portals to share their information. Brochures can be downloaded from the property page, and users can save them to read later. This is a lower cost way of reaching people who are specifically interested in your property. It makes so much more sense to do this than to use snail mail and have to reach out to agents one by one. It’s easy to understand why people would prefer the online model to more dated ways of doing things.

There are some that disagree with the idea that print is dead though. Fiona West of The Marketing Center believes that during the evaluation or trial stage of a purchasing process having a brochure to look through can be useful and can even go so far as to prevent buyer’s remorse after a large purchase. Since digital brochures are less interactive, they are less effective in that respect.

You should consider your client base when you’re debating marketing, though. Digital is good for young adults, because they are more tech savvy. The 25-35 age group is more likely to use smartphones to do things like search for property, so they can be easily targeted with digital brochures. Indeed, 27% of searches for buying a home in June were done on smartphones, compared to 19% in the same month last year. So, if you are trying to sell a property that might appeal to a first-time buyer then you should consider marketing online. Indeed, younger buyers are more likely to be involved in the tech industry and therefore will appreciate a well-designed digital brochure in a way that an older buyer might not.

Location is also an important consideration. A property in a rural area might do well with a run of brochures to give to viewers, but a property in London is more likely to get snapped up quickly with digital marketing, eliminating the need for heavy marketing via a brochure. It’s still useful to have a handful run off just in case one is specifically requested, but there is no need to do a run of 100 if it’s clear that online search is going to dominate the customer base.

Property marketing brochures can be invaluable for high-value properties, and it’s clear that they do have a psychological impact on how people perceive the property and how they go through the search process. It will be interesting to see how this continues over the next few years as the market evolves. The reliance on print could fade away completely as people become more aware of the environment and try to cut down on waste in general. For now, it is useful to follow both approaches when trying to reach your buyers. If you haven’t been using online, give it a look with your next property, and see how many movers you can reach.