Patrick Whelan

If you want to sell a kid a toy, invite him to play with it in the toy store. Once the child pushes the buttons, pulls the levers, and engages the gadgets, your chances of making a sale go way up. The same concept applies in print.

When people receive printed pieces that encourage interaction, such as pull tabs, pop-ups, and lifting pages, they are more likely to respond to its message. If you can get them to “create” the piece themselves, so much the better. It’s why campaigns that allow people to go online “create their own brochures” are so effective. Not only are these brochures personalized to their own needs, tastes, and wants, but because people selected the content themselves, they have a more vested interest in the result.

Consider the example of personalized college brochures. Colleges and universities send out mailers to high school seniors in the target demographic, inviting them to a personalized URL where they can get more information on the school. Students select the course tracks, extra-curricular activities, and housing information they are interested in. The school prints and mails the brochures using the content the recipient selected, usually within the next 24–48 hours. Not only are response rates higher than in traditional campaigns, but the enrollment rates for students who create personalized brochures are consistently higher, too.

There are lots of other ways to get people to interact with print. Recipients can lift a flap. Press a button. Scan a QR Code. Some pieces encourage interactivity with glued-on accordion-fold message panels. It doesn’t matter how they interact. What matters is that once they do, they are more likely to respond because they “own” part of the message. That generates results.

Want to try it? Call us to talk about options for including an interactive component in your next printed piece.

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