When to Update Your Print Materials

When to Update Your Print Materials

When is it time to update your print materials? They say your first impression is the one that counts the most, and giving off a professional and legitimate view of your business certainly helps. However, in your marketing planning process, it is easy for your print materials to slip through the cracks or simply be left behind. You may think, since we’re in the digital age, how important can printed items really be? Well, we’re here to tell you exactly how. Printed items are just as essential to a business as before if not more.

An illustrated timeline of the evolution of Subway's logo from 1965 to present.
Source: Adobe

Updated Logo or Branding

The most obvious answer for needing to update your print materials comes from changing your logo or branding. Displaying multiple color stories or logos in different flyers, brochures, etc. is an easy cause for confusion. Make sure you are putting forth a consistent message in everything you distribute to your clients. Every time you visit a business’ website or a certain company’s location, you expect the same experience every time, right? So why should it be any different for the marketing materials you put out?

This certainly applies to digital items like a website or an app as well. However, printed items are a tangible resource and something people still expect when they walk into a brick-and-mortar location. These printed updates are therefore all the more necessary.

Take a look at the evolution of Subway’s logo, taken from Adobe Express’ blog post about redesigning a logo. While the overall idea has remained the same, subtle changes in font choice and colors would make it necessary to update paper menus, displays in the restaurant, outside signage, and much more. Only changing some of these aspects and not all of them would indicate the company’s inattention to detail and lack of care for how the brand story is presented.

Make sure your company’s core values and mission are also highlighted in everything you put out. Give people a reason to come to your business and yours alone for their specific needs.

The merging of Colortech and Blue Cardinal Group created Colortech's current brand.

Services Have Changed

If your business has evolved or has more to offer than before, make sure to talk about your new and refurbished services in your marketing materials. You don’t want to present outdated flyers with irrelevant information. It’s confusing and frustrating for clients who want to know all that you have to offer but aren’t able to. Therefore, always keep up to date with what your business has going for itself.

For example, Colortech merged with Blue Cardinal Group in early 2020. When this happened, we saw a need to update many of our marketing materials to reflect this change. Prior to the integration, Colortech was mainly known for its printing services as well as offering mailing and fulfillment options to its clients.

On the other hand, Blue Cardinal Group, Colortech’s sister company, offered creative services. These included graphic design, web design, marketing, photography, and video. By merging the two companies with one another, Colortech could now directly offer all of these services to its clients at once. Before, we had to refer clients to the other company when more than one service was needed.

Needless to say, combining our two companies was a great business opportunity. The process came with the need to rebrand and thus change all of our marketing materials. We still update these and create new ones regularly.  This allows us to appeal to our audience and to indicate how our services have greatly expanded in the last few years. Modernizing our content and keeping it fresh also keeps people engaged and looking forward to seeing what we will do next!

An illustration of an alarm clock going off

A Good Deal of Time Has Passed

If you can’t remember when your company last updated your print materials, that’s a good sign to evaluate what you have. Step back and determine whether what you have is actually still working for the business. After all, improvements can always be made.

If you’ve been at your company for even half a decade and haven’t seen anything new come about, it’s time to make that happen. In fact, your sales and marketing teams should be coming together and discussing how to update your print materials at least once every two years, if not every year. This doesn’t mean a whole rebrand, in fact, far from that. It’s more about making sure that what you’re putting out there is still up-to-date and reflective of your company’s message.

“But everything has been the same since 2005, and it’s fine!” you say. Is it? Sure, you may not want to change what brought your clients to your business and kept them coming back. You don’t even have to offer new services if you’ve found a niche and want to stick with it. However, keeping a fresh look with your marketing will prevent your message from becoming stale. It may even generate further interest in your business.

Gain some attention from new prospects as well by indicating that you keep up with the times. Subtle ways of doing this are by freshening up and modernizing your business cards, putting out quarterly mailers with updated deals, and putting out new brochures in your offices about your services. You can also add your social media handles and relevant QR codes to any of these.

An illustration of a team looking at company numbers and discussing how to best appeal to an audience. There are several graphs, a calculator, a target, and several screens behind them to symbolize the conversation.

Materials Are No Longer Connecting with Your Audience

Whether through cold calls, email marketing, or other means, your sales team will seek out and bring forth what clients are looking for. Additionally, they should let the marketing team know which of the current marketing materials aren’t connecting with clients. These can be both print and digital subjects. As mentioned before, your marketing and sales teams should consistently be working together to evaluate all of your marketing materials.

Figure out what isn’t clicking with your audience and adjust accordingly. Analyze your return on investment and focus on areas that are most valuable to your type of company. In addition, don’t waste time, money, and resources updating materials that aren’t necessary for your target audience.

For example, you may find that email marketing doesn’t seem to be producing great results. However, people are responding enthusiastically to your traditional mailer and using your included coupon in your stores. Spend more of your energy on designing and printing these types of mailers. Strictly speaking, don’t waste your time continuing with email marketing if it clearly isn’t working with your audience. These are the kinds of things to look out for when putting together a print and digital marketing campaign.

Looking to update your print materials but don’t know where to start? Colortech can help through the whole process, including creative, print, and logistics!

Helpful Hints

June 9, 2023

(5 min. read)

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