Why Printing is Cool (Again)

Editor's Note: This article comes from Hewlett Packard, the largest manufacturer of computer printers in the world. So with that caveat, there appears to be times when "hard copy" has more impact than digital.  

Though the world has become increasingly digital, print remains an important and critical player in the business world. From more impactful marketing to creating a more professional, credible presence in the marketplace, print matters. And matters plenty.

So don't jettison your office printer or vanquish print marketing from your business plan just yet. Print is indeed alive, well, and valuable in today's digital age and harnessing its evolving power can deliver new-found results. Here are six reasons companies still turn to print to make a personal connection in a digital world.

1. Print remains the standard
Despite profound digital advancements, printed materials such as contracts, government forms, and hard-copy reports still remain the accepted and unavoidable norm in today's society.

2. Print resonates with the brain
A recent neuroscience study found that printed material generates more emotional connections and leaves a longer-lasting imprint on the mind than digital information,1 a nod to print's enduring ability to engage customers and drive branding.

3. The mobile world is getting crowded
Whereas digital materials might linger in the vast cyberspace galaxy, print can rest—simply and subtly—in our hands. A well-designed postcard, for instance, can help your business stand out, particularly as competitors ditch print in favor of digital.

4. Print offers a welcome respite from digital's dominance
U.S. adults spend more than 11 hours a day consuming media on smartphones, television, radio, and computers.2 Increasingly, many people are breaking from the noise by going "unplugged" or incorporating a digital detox into their daily lives, decisions that often return them to the simplicity of printed material.

5. Print is cool (again)
As organizations flood social media and online channels to corral fans and showcase their offerings, print is earning appeal for its retro, straightforward qualities. No dancing graphics. No pop-up ads. Just some old-school design and text crafted from artisans' hands.

6. Print offers credibility
As a professional communications medium, print carries weight. The look and feel of something in your hand gives it extra credibility and added importance.

Print or digital? It's not an either-or proposition.

Even in this digitally charged, 21st century world, print plays a meaningful, relevant role, a 15th century medium that can help businesses solve their needs, reach their customers, and build their brands in contemporary ways. Today's printers, after all, are more efficient and effective, productive and powerful than ever before, offering businesses the opportunity to do in-house print runs of high-quality brochures, large-format signage, lengthy documents, and more in a streamlined, safe and financially shrewd manner.

There's mobile, on-the-go printing from a smartphone or tablet that brings speed and efficiency to the workplace; advanced networking capabilities that streamline workload and costs; and multi-function printers that offer copying, scanning, faxing, and printing from a single unit.

So don't be fooled by the hype. Print is far from dead and, in fact, remains a vital part of the business landscape, a necessary tool your business can leverage to reach its customers, carry out its dealings, and heighten its standing.

Better yet, combine print's continued relevance with today's sophisticated print technology and your business can strike an efficient, cost-effective, and productive balance that fuels results.

 [1] Millward Brown, Using Neuroscience to Understand the Role of Direct Mail
[2] Nielsen, The Total Audience Report

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