Integration of Online and Offline Channels is Foundational for Future Success – Part 1

It’s hard to believe that we are halfway through 2016, and I’m still taking time to reflect on last year’s holiday accomplishments, evaluate transactional and browse trends and start thinking about this year’s holiday planning in the next few months. But before that, let’s take a moment to reflect on the last year. Think about it: 2015 brought us Mobilegeddon, unprecedented advancements in MarTech (Marketing Technology), e-commerce personalization, and the hottest merger and acquisition market since the global financial crisis. There seems to be no end to the dizzying amount of change facing companies in 2016.

I wanted to cover a lot of ground related to both print and digital, so I’m going to discuss various topics over the course of three blog posts. This one today will concern offline channels and print media. In the second part I will discuss how to strengthen digital marketing channels. And finally in the third part of this blog series, I will revisit print circulation and brand positioning.

Resurgence of Print Publishing and Direct Marketing

Throughout 2015, marketers couldn’t ignore the growing chatter about the reemergence of offline marketing as key to success in an increasingly digital world. As consumers reach technological maturation in an Internet of Things (IoT) world, it is increasingly vital for today’s marketers to understand the relationship between their channel and cross device activities. The great irony in this seemingly brave new world of digital optimization is that a paradoxical trend (offline channels) continues to gather momentum.

 A growing trend in retail circles involves companies realizing strong lifts resulting from the alignment of continuity and consistency of messaging between offline and online channels. The well-publicized resurgence of print in the forms of catalogs, look books, and branded direct mail doesn’t appear to be slowing down any time soon, especially as marketers find it progressively more difficult to “break through” in a crowded digital landscape. Add to that the overreliance on increasingly expensive keywords, coupled with all-too-often disappointing results, and it’s no wonder marketers are becoming disillusioned. At the same time, the ongoing concern consumers have for compromising their online security has prompted many to block pop-ups and skip display ads altogether, thus masking their digital footprint.

That’s not to say that marketers are turning their backs on digital channels-far from it! However, it’s a good time to revisit traditional digital marketing channels and ensure that they’re optimally positioned to earn the best results.

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