Print Still A Major Factor In Automotive Path To Purchase Studies Show

Over the last couple years we have heard a lot about the automotive path to purchase which according to the word on the street now means digital and in many cases only digital even though most major automotive brands are still using print, radio, TV, Magazines etc. Well for those of you who believe that path is 100 per cent a digital path nothing could be further from the truth. Not only does print continue to play a role in the path to purchase it continues to have a major impact.

A recent Brand Spark survey completed for Metroland consumers were asked when planning for an automotive purchase what sources of information do they reference to best prepare for a purchase. 36 per cent of respondents said they used printed flyers and 21 per cent said their Metroland community newspaper. This says 57 per cent use print to prepare for an automotive purchase.  Another Metroland study “Pulse” which is their 3rd party intent to purchase over the next 12 months study with over 5000 respondents also supports the automotive path to purchase for the newspaper industry. Pulse tracks automotive intent to spend data on everything from service to new car sales. New car sales alone within the Metroland network show a $20 billion spend over the next 12 months. Remember this survey was completed on the Metroland network so it shows the dollars available using Metroland newspapers. A Newspapers Canada study by Totum in 2016 researching automotive path to purchase over the past 2 years also supports print. Their study showed that 7 out of 10 new car buyers are reading automotive ads in printed newspapers. Lastly a recent study by IPSOS “Connecting for action report” focusing on direct mail showed that impact on digital advertising is much greater when combined with direct mail. One highlight I took from that study was that arousal was 26 per cent higher when direct mail followed digital display.

There are many studies out there that support print advertising in terms of impact for automotive path to purchase so if you are skeptical do some research. If you want to sit down and review Metroland’s Pulse, Brand spark or the Newspapers Canada study I would be happy to share and discuss that data in further detail.


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Finding the Right Flyer Mix between Print and Digital

I read an article this week in Canadian Retailer which compared digital and print flyers providing some insight into the future of each platform and what their role with Canadian consumers may be going forward. I found this article to be informative as it backed up my opinion that even with the rise of the digital age, traditional print flyers are still the number one driver in terms of driving people to stores which translates to driving more sales than digital flyers. It is true that more and more retailers are adding a digital component to their flyer media mix but printed circulars are still the number one choice for Canadians. 80 per cent of respondents to a recent BrandSpark survey said that they were still looking at printed flyers on a weekly basis. Printed flyers also allow local businesses to stay connected to their communities which digital flyers as a rule do not do. As far as newspapers go Metroland leads the way having a strong connection with our communities it’s even part of our logo “Connected to your community”.

There are advantages to digital flyers such as tracking purchasing trends, product engagement, and data on customer behavior so figuring out the right media mix between print and digital is important and unique to each retailer. The most advanced flyer advertisers in Canada have already found this mix so if you are a flyer advertiser and haven’t done so it clearly should find it’s way on to your to do list. Metroland has always been the leader in targeted flyer distribution using POS and customer data, lifestyle data and other targeting data to offer the best available targeting to our customers which translates into a higher ROI.  Metroland also has a national leading online flyer/coupon deal site offering all of the latest digital trends so we have you covered.

Takeaways for me include flyer distribution and printing being a feel good story in terms of importance to retailers and for best results you should have a print and digital flyer presence. I will end on this note which is mentioned in the article 72 per cent of shoppers “would be upset, stop shopping at the store or just think its a bad idea” if the stores they shop at stopped distributing a printed flyer. For the complete article follow the link below.

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“For the Love of Flyers” – article in the Marketing Issue of Canadian Retailer