You’re walking down the street and a Green Peace volunteer hands you a flyer. You glance at its colorful graphs spelling out the planet’s doom. Then you toss it in the recycle bin.

“What a waste of paper.” You think.

But is it really a waste of paper? Sure, plenty of people did exactly what you did. But how many donated to the cause? How many became volunteers that day?

Analog marketing and online marketing follow similar rules. It’s just that one deals in electrons and the other in recycled trees.

Here’s why analog marketing tactics are still effective in very specific circumstances.

1. Boosts Trust

We spend so much time garnering trust in online marketing. We build profiles. We create privacy policies. We make out NAP consistent across the interwebs.

But what are we doing in the real world to create trust. Leaflet distribution is one of the easiest ways to build trust if you’re a small business.

Anyone can claim an address online. But it takes a little bit of planning and forethought to gather pamphlets and send them out. At least that’s the perception.

In reality, you’re going to hire someone to do all of that. But people will be more likely to trust a business if they see a physical object from your address.

2. It’s Physical

While the debate is still open as to whether it’s better to read analog or digital content, analog still has a certain appeal. It’s something you can hold in your hand as opposed to something you just see on a screen.

But for you as a marketer/business person, there is one major advantage. The permanence of the pamphlet or brochure.

Think of it this way. If someone goes to your website or opens your email, are they going to visit that same content again later? Unlikely. But if you give them a physical brochure, if they don’t throw it away, what happens to it? It lays around the house.

Sooner or later, they’re going to pick it up again and look at it. If it’s in a more visible spot, guests might pick it up and peruse it. You’re getting more marketing value out of that one piece of literature than any ad online or blog post.

3. Could Add Value

I once heard of this business man who printed his business cards on Starbucks gift cards. Yes, it was more expensive than traditional cards, but how many people are going to throw away a gift card?

I’ve seen artists print their art on postcard-sized cards with their information on the back. In fact, I’ve got one displayed on my desk right now.

If you put something in or on the pamphlet that’s of value to the customer, they’re less likely to throw it away. This loops back to my second point about physicality. Get as much value out of that piece of paper as you can by giving your leads something of value.

Don’t Waste Potential

So, is it really a waste of paper? No. Not if you use pamphlets and brochures appropriately.

Make your brochures incredible and add value through them and you’ll see excellent ROI.

By Ben Mattice

Benjamin Mattice is a freelance writer/editor, horror and sci-fi writer, SEO and affiliate marketing newbie, dog wrestler, cat wrangler, capoeirista, and long distance runner. He lives in the Palouse with his wife, three dogs, two cats, and two rats. Yes, that would probably be considered a mini-zoo.