Technology has played a major role in both the reduction of printed newsletters and their current comeback.
With the initial adoption of email marketing as a cost-effective alternative to mailing physical newsletters, the traditional newsletter was thought to have become almost extinct. While marketers had always recognized the ability of the hardcopy versions to deliver their messages effectively, the cost reductions by delivering via email were just too attractive to pass up.
So what’s changed?
Ironically another technological evolution has all but eliminated the viability of electronic newsletters and their reliance on email delivery. Forget the accepted challenges of SPAM filtering, cluttered inboxes and the fact that the average user pages through emails faster than ever before, the new obstacle was simply a knockout punch.
With the rapid adoption of mobile devices, email communications moved from the desktop to what is now primarily a mobile device-centric interaction. While continuing to evolve, it is estimated that as much as 70% of emails are opened on a mobile device. Regardless of the format, which can include a PDF attachment or the latest responsive email design, a content rich newsletter is simply not going to get consumed in a mobile environment.
So as marketers have seen the ROI of electronic versions slide, the printed versions have reemerged along with the advantages they’ve always had. The physical nature of a printed piece along with its ability to engage, involve and communicate more extensive content has given new life back to the printed newsletter and all it delivers.