Get ‘Real’ in a Virtual World

24th August 2018

More and more the ‘digital world’ has taken over our lives. The advantages in so many ways are immeasurable, but as retailers, producers, purveyors and service providers, it is all too easy to have the focus of our attention diverted from the ‘real world’ as we aim to perfect our digital presence.

We can spend hours, days, even weeks with graphic designers, website creators, digital marketing specialists and the dreaded search engine optimisation (SEO) gurus chasing virtual clients and customers through cyberspace. But what about those people we actually get to meet face to face, or, more to the point, want to meet face to face?

Use the power of print to get connected with customers

If you are unsure to what extent the virtual world has taken over the lives of the UK population, Deloitte has revealed some startling results, the headline to their recent article tells its own story and will give you an insight into the problem facing many of us today: UK public are ‘glued to smartphones’ as device adoption reaches new heights.

The phrase “glued to their smartphones” is scarily accurate – you only have to walk down the street to notice the number of people who are seemingly oblivious to their surroundings as they chat away on their smartphone. So, what has this got to do with printing you may ask?

Distracting the already distracted

Ten years ago, we were all less distracted. Why? Because we were less accessible to the rest of the world. We were enjoying the benefits of mobile phones which enabled us to be more ‘connected’ to family, friends and our workplace, but that was it. Today we are not just connected to these people, they are almost a part of our lives wherever we go and whatever we do. Worse still, we are now instantly accessible to virtually everyone in the world thanks to social media, which has become a constant distraction.

When we are out and about, less and less do we actually notice or take in our surroundings as we consistently and constantly check our smartphone for alerts and updates. Ever get the feeling that you are actually being ‘harassed’ by your smartphone? Ten years ago, we would notice if a shop had changed its window display, if it had undergone a revamp or even changed ownership, as we walked down the street. We would also notice the modest-but-effective ‘Sale’ stickers in the window, intended to catch our eye as we ambled past.

Next time you walk down the high street, have a look for those ‘Sale’ stickers. They’re a little easier to spot now as they have changed to three-foot high banners or, in some cases, have even taken over the whole of the shop window, to the point you can hardly see what they are actually selling inside. This is because it has become harder and harder for retailers to grab our attention.

The power of print has become more critical    

When you know exactly what the challenge is, the solution is easier to find, and when it comes to catching the eye of the public, the role of ‘printed media’ cannot be overestimated. So where are the opportunities to effectively utilise print?

  • Shop signage – whether to attract pedestrians or people passing by in a car or bus, your shop sign has to look not just good, but great. Not only do you want to be noticed, but your shop front tells its own story. Nothing tells the public to move on if they are looking for quality in a product or service more than a scruffy, time-worn shop front sign.
  • Vehicle signage –  recognisable vehicle decals and graphics are a brilliant way to get your business noticed, to help build your ‘brand’ and maximise the effectiveness of your workforce as ‘marketers’ for your business. Build a visual connection between your vehicles and your shop premises to strengthen your local presence.
  • Billboards – with printing costs for large scale print tumbling thanks to the emergence of large-format digital printers, many more of you are sensibly takign advantage of this and adjusting your marketing strategies.
  • Mobile billboards – what better way to take your message to the public, especially when you know they will be gathering in numbers – roads close to football stadia on a Saturday, car boot sales, weekly markets, etc. According to a Capitol Communications Group survey, 81.7% of those polled recalled images they saw on a moving multi-image sign compared to a 19% retention rate for static signs.
  • Posters – you don’t have to go to the scale of a full-blown billboard when there are innumerable opportunities to use more-easily posted advertisements. Bus shelters, train and bus stations, public noticeboards, shopping centres, etc. are prime spots for poster advertisements.
  • Leaflets and brochures – whether for use to hand out personally in your premises, or to be left in display racks or on counter tops in other establishments, leaflets and brochures are the original version of a website ‘bookmark’ and present the opportunity for publicity to last appreciably longer than an advertisement ‘popup’ on a smartphone screen.

Here at the Entwistle Group we have been specialising in print media of the highest quality for a comprehensive range of businesses to connect more effectively with potential clients and customers. Digital print still has a very effective role to play in marketing, and with so many recent advancements in digital print technology, one of the greatest benefits for our customers is greater affordability, especially for smaller and more-individual print runs.

To find out more how we can help you connect more effectively with your customers, get in contact and let us help you find more ways to increase the profitability of your business.

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