Wednesday, January 17, 2018

5 Print Marketing Trends For 2018

While we’re all fast at work keeping up with today’s click-through, digital-driven pace, the print industry is experiencing a quiet revival. Perhaps that resurgence is because of its perceived value: A tangible printed piece like a brochure (or ad, or sign…) makes a memorable brand connection with an audience while offering a shelf life that far outlasts a typical social media scroll.

The latest statistics show that expected growth for commercial printing is 1.5% - 3% in 2018, with sales expected to total $84 billion–that’s 9.1% above 2011. That growth is slated to continue through 2024.

This year, Shamrock celebrates 35 years as a print and marketing solutions provider. We’ve grown and diversified along with the advent of digital technology, understanding that there’s not only room for both in your marketing arsenal—but that incorporating both digital channels and tactile touches is essential to success: Print is an important part of a balanced, integrated marketing strategy.

Here are five print marketing trends to consider implementing as part of your marketing effort this year:

Personalization. Customized content creates unique value—and greater relevance. Personalization used to be a novelty; but today, people expect products and services to be adapted and relevant to them: The more you connect with your audience through personalization, the more resistance is dropped. Making a personalized connection increases customer engagement with your brand.

Print & digital integration. Blending online and offline channels as part of an integrated marketing strategy is the key to driving higher conversion rates and making lasting brand impressions. Use your print media to link your audience back to your blog, a landing page, an exclusive video, website or to one of social media channels.

Custom/unique coupon codes. Using a unique coupon is a smart strategy for not only increasing customer engagement but also in gathering personal data about your target audience. Unique coupon codes generate higher ROI than generic coupon codes because they cannot be shared or reproduced—they are aimed at an individual, which creates a more personal connection and an exclusive feel.

Color. According to Pantone, color in 2018 will go bolder—a proven way to make a statement with your audience: Pantone also predicts continued print marketing trends in iridescent color palettes and a move away from pastels. Color evokes emotion, can change a mood and helps tell your brand story—which will you choose to share your brand narrative?

Texture. A study from the University of Iowa found that haptic (touch) memory is the type of memory that has the strongest impact on the human brain. The physical act of holding something makes a stronger connection with the audiences. And so, using print media engages our haptic memory, creating lasting brand awareness. Adding glosses, raised ink, embossing, matte finishes—these create interesting texture for even greater brand connections.

Which of these print marketing trends will you embrace this year? I’m interested in your feedback.
tconnor@shamrockcompanies.net

Tim Connor

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Shamrock Named to the Print + Promo Top 50 Distributors for 2017

The industry magazine Print + Promo released its annual rankings recognizing the highest-performing distributors based on print sales for fiscal year 2017—and The Shamrock Companies came in at #11. Here’s an excerpt from the Print + Promo website:

“The list, which serves as a barometer for industry health, offers insight into how external factors, like mergers and acquisitions, the economy and political climate, influence print volume among print resellers. For our 2017 Top 50 Distributors list, we evaluated more than 70 companies, totaling $3.50 billion—the distributor segment’s best showing since 2008. We also asked distributors to report how much business they do in major product categories, including printed forms, labels & tags, commercial printing, direct mail, promotional products and more.”

The industry resource reported that among the Top 50 companies…

Promotional products are driving sales revenue: There was an increase in sales for six of nine product categories, with promotional products taking the No. 1 spot due to a $384 million increase in revenue compared to 2016.

We’re in good company in Ohio: In all, 22 U.S. states were headquarters to at least one print distributor on the list. Ohio was the winner with seven Top 50 distributors.

To read the entire article, click on the link below:
http://www.goprintandpromo.com/article/printpromo-announces-the-2017-top-50-distributors/

On behalf of our entire team at Shamrock, we’re proud to be recognized among the industry’s top distributors and thank our clients, suppliers and vendor partners for sharing in that success.

Here’s to moving on up in 2018!

Tim Connor

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

6 TED Talks to Help You Reach Your Goals in 2018

It’s time for a new beginning, to embark on the journey of a new year filled with opportunities. Whether you’re a person who makes New Year’s resolutions or sets performance goals for yourself and/or your business, it’s nice to have some extra motivation and guidance to help you stay the course.

We found a list of six TED talks compiled by The Ritz-Carlton Leadership Center that offers advice on goal-setting and how to follow through on the actions needed to achieve your goals and dreams:

1) Try Something New for 30 Days by Matt Cutts
In this three-minute TED Talk, the speaker shows how small steps can lead to big adventures. Inviting activity into your life seems to lead to a richer experience.
https://www.ted.com/talks/matt_cutts_try_something_new_for_30_days
2) 5 Ways to Kill Your Dreams by Bel Pesce
In this six-minute TED Talk, the speaker shares five lines of thought that will keep you from reaching your goals, and she also emphasizes the significance of the journey.

3) Four Keys for Setting and Achieving Goals by William Barr
In this eight-minute TED Talk, the speaker shares how he was able to build one of the nation’s largest home improvement companies.

4) If You Want to Achieve Your Goals, Don’t Focus on Them by Reggie Rivers
In this 11-minute TED Talk, the speaker shares how focusing on the goals can actually prevent you from achieving your goals. By focusing on your behaviors, you will be more driven to follow through.

5) The Key to Success? Grit by Angela Lee Duckworth
In this 6-minute TED Talk, the speaker shares how grit is a key ingredient for success. She encourages the audience to live life as a marathon and not a sprint.
https://www.ted.com/talks/angela_lee_duckworth_grit_the_power_of_passion_and_perseverance
6) The Power of Believing That You Can Improve by Carol Dweck
In this 11-minute TED Talk, the speaker shares how adopting a growth mindset can open you up to greater success. She encourages the audience to see a challenge as a “yet” opportunity.

The fresh start of a new year offers a host of exciting new opportunities, changes and challenges. With the help of these resources, we hope you’ll be making the very most of 2018. Always, we welcome your input: If you have other TED talks to add to this list, please connect with Shamrock on Facebook.

Good luck—and happy new year!
Tim Connor