Monday, November 28, 2016
  • Pumpt Admin

Getting customers across the line: The motivational power of catalogues and print media

We live in a constantly changing media environment – in the digital space, it can be hard for people to keep track of which avenue is which. Here, we delve further into ACA research unveiling truths about the power of catalogues, flyers, direct mail – the lot! If you can get it into a potential customer’s letterbox, that’s one small step for a postie – one giant leap for your company’s reach.



Print media such as magazines are considered among the most trusted media, generally they are read because someone has consciously made an effort to read them. Often when people read, they have to pay full attention to what they are reading. In comparison, 74% of people will dual screen while watching TV, meaning they will have a mobile, tablet or computer active at the same time.


Print media is often memorable because it engages more of the senses with the feel and smell of the paper. What this means is that catalogues and unaddressed mailings can have more of an impact on people’s overall perception of a brand. In this respect print media can have a similar experience to a store, where customers create an affinity with a business based on it’s aesthetics.


Browsing Experience

Catalogues provide a convenient browsing experience. Customers can take note of what they want and either go online (48%) to make an order, or head in-store (40%) when they’re ready – without having to traipse from shop to shop.


Similarly, mailers and flyers with strong imagery of products and services can remind customers about who you are and what you specialize in. So, while they may not purchase anything on the spot, these media formats can create buyer awareness, putting your business at the forefront of future purchasing decisions.

There are three main reasons why unaddressed mail feeds purchasing decisions. The first is for pre-planned purchases where they can compare products, the second is to get gift ideas and the third is for purchasing unplanned products. The Australian Catalogue Association Industry Report 2015/16 mentions that it has been found that unaddressed mail has influenced 79% of customers to make a purchase.

Influences the influencers

Printed catalogues can have a reasonably high level of reach with 70% of all New Zealanders aged 14+ reading a catalogue in a four-week period. The highest readership group are those aged 40–49 years, followed by 18–29 year olds. Not only that, they are recognized as the most influential media when it comes to purchasing decisions.

This may be explained by the fact that trusted advisors – those people who friends and family are likely to go to for advice – are 20 times more likely to read catalogues. If you think about your own household, who is the most influential purchaser? Often it’s the main household shopper. Main household shoppers with kids prefer to refer to catalogues when they hear about new products and services.

Females 20–59 are also more likely to use catalogues to compare prices and to purchase something they have seen in a catalogue.

What this means for retailers
As mentioned in our previous blog post, letterbox marketing has the highest reach in New Zealand at 3.88 million, versus television at 3.3 million and radio at 3 million. We can see from media trends that media agency spend in catalogue and letterbox advertising have increased as a result of this reach and the fact that there has been an increase in data and tools to improve targeting. This investment has improved ROI transparency and allows for better econometric modelling, giving greater business acumen for what is happening in the market.


Catalogues and other print media can create a level of engagement that can help businesses develop a conversation with customers. If customers like what they are reading, they are more likely to build a relationship with that brand. As a result, if they receive a catalogue and are not planning a purchase at that point in time, they may use it as a reference for a future purchase – making catalogues a great way to ensure long-term customers.