When Is An Email Really As Good As Sending A Letter?
As I sit here preparing this article, I started to ponder how it will be used. Firstly, it will go out in our newsletter Print2Profit, it will be used on our blog and other social media, and finally at some point in the future it will probably be sent out as an email. Not a bad investment for some writing and thinking time.
The same words used 3,4,5,6 different ways – great leverage. However, even with the same words used and the same ideas conveyed, it doesn’t mean that the words will have the same impact on you the reader.
It turns out that the media I use to send this article to you will actually alter the effects of the article. Amazing thought isn’t it?
All thanks to some very interesting research done by the team at Millward Brown and Bangor University, they wanted to know if there was a difference between a physical letter and an email. Or more broadly speaking digital media (email, web, mobile, social media) and physical media (print).
Turns out there is a world of difference between the two.
After sticking a bunch of people in a functional Magnetic Resonance Imagery scanner (fMRI), the research team found that showing a person the same marketing materials digitally and also in printed form altered the way their brains processed the marketing materials...
Turns out tangible materials leave a deeper emotional footprint in the brain.
Material shown in printed form generated more activity in the areas associated with integration of spatial and visual information – physical materials are MORE REAL to our brains.
This information is better connected to memory, and it requires emotional processing –meaning your market will like you more if you send them something physical (printed materials) and people prefer to buy from people they like.
They will also remember tangible materials longer than electronic materials.
It’s interesting to note that although the number of companies using print media is shrinking the amount of print they use is actually growing. In 2012, in the US more money was spent on direct mail than ANY OTHER SINGLE medium. It outspent telemarketing 2:1. 3:1 vs. direct response TV and 4:1 vs. Paid Online Search + email + mobile marketing. This is all according to the Direct Marketing Associations Statistical Fact Book.
What’s more amazing is direct mail had a 2:1 higher RETURN ON INVESTMENT when compared to paid search marketing.
Not hard to believe in light of Millward Brown and Bangor University’s research.