Which Is More Effective: Email Newsletters or Print Newsletters?

print newsletters

Print newsletters may have been temporarily abandoned for the very short-lived promise of social media marketing, but many business owners and marketing firms are once again revisiting this powerful marketing tool. With their more informative, less sales-pitchy style, newsletters dominate when it comes to reaching customers and potential clients. But which is more effective: email newsletters or direct-mail print newsletters?

At first glance, email newsletters seem like the easiest and cheapest option…but the question remains: at what cost? With a simple click, your subscribers can either bypass or delete your email newsletter without ever having opened it. Even worse, catch them in a not-so-cheery mood, and they might even opt out of your emails altogether.

Here’s a little secret that many marketing professionals either aren’t sharing or are completely unaware of: print isn’t dead. Statistically, the numbers speak for themselves. Whereas your print newsletter is pretty much guaranteed to at least be seen by your recipients, e-newsletters by comparison have much lower visibility (to give you an idea, marketing emails had an average open rate of just 11.6% in 2014). And those are just viewing stats. When it comes to response rates, the numbers are even bleaker for email newsletters, which average at a meager 1.6% click rate versus a 3.7% follow up rate with print newsletters. We know what you’re thinking. How can that be? Email is so much…cooler. But here’s why print newsletters continue to trump with both reach and profit:

Print Newsletters Versus Email Newsletters

  1. Spam-Proof. When it comes to print newsletters, the mailbox remains one of the most effective delivery tools to date. Think about it—because there’s no separate mailbox for junk mail, people must physically sort through their mail to determine for themselves what’s important. Send a digital newsletter and you’re rolling the dice when it comes to landing in the spam (a.k.a. will NEVER get seen) folder.
  1. Visibility Factor. Statistics show that emails have a small opening window that begins to plummet after the first hour of sending. Think about it: when it comes to your personal email account, how likely are you to go back and open an email you skipped over earlier? Direct mail strategies like print newsletters are different. Nearly everyone sorts through his/her mail at least weekly, and many people have a ritual of prioritizing their mail and even placing aside or filing away what they deem important. With an eye-catching headline, layout, or both, there’s a strong chance your print newsletter will at least be considered for the “read” pile.
  1. Easy Readership. Texting and online shopping may trump phone calls and malls. But when it comes to reading, the majority of people still prefer a printed, tactile format. This isn’t surprising, however, when examining digital reading studies, which conclude that because our brains associate text with the physical world, people tend to find the process of focusing while reading digital print very challenging. The same concept applies if you’re trying to reach clients via newsletters. You can’t peak interest without first holding your clients’ attention. The disconnect your subscribers will likely feel with your e-newsletter doesn’t exactly make for effective marketing, but give them a print newsletter that they can physically hold and interact with, and concentration is no longer an issue.
  1. Make an Impression. These days, nearly everyone sends marketing emails and e-newsletters. Why not stand out with something now considered “different”? A print newsletter goes the extra mile, symbolizing a brand of professionalism and a commitment to your clients that just isn’t conveyed with e-newsletters. There’s a wow factor that accompanies tangible mail, and any extra edge over your competition is a good thing.

When considering the many virtues of the print newsletter, from its guaranteed delivery and high visibility factor to its polished, impressive presentation and inviting readership, giving your existing and potential clients a tangible print newsletter is virtually fail proof. Sure—you might consider supplementing your print newsletter communication with a follow-up email or two in between, but print newsletters are no doubt far more effective than email newsletters.

The only real con to print newsletters is the cost. But that’s where we come in. Dazzle Printing offers low pricing, with minimum orders of just 25 copies that you can increase in 1-copy increments. Use our instant pricing calculators and see for yourself why we’re known for quick turnaround at impressively low prices.

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