Showcasing the ‘Class of 2021’ with programmatic print

How Canon and The Drum’s collaboration used programmatic print to increase engagement for the ‘Class of 2021’ campaign.

Person touching a print out on a table

Combining the power of digital and print marketing to create a deeper connection with target audiences

Print has a way of engaging the senses that no other form of marketing has. Far from being old fashioned, print has evolved to the point that today it’s possible to take print and combine it with the best attributes of digital.

The result is programmatic print which allows brands to fuel a deeper connection with the target audience, get higher response rates, increased sales and brand loyalty.

Brand marketers can use digital combined with programmatic print to produce clear performance metrics for their print marketing to prove the return on investment of the campaign.

To demonstrate the power of programmatic print, Canon teamed up with The Drum, a global media platform and biggest marketing website in Europe, to launch the ‘Class of 2021’, a digital ‘degree show’. This collaboration was designed to overcome the challenges set by the pandemic and give the global creative community access to up-and coming talent in creative arts and design via a virtual exhibition.

Watch part 1 about the collaboration between Canon and The Drum in ‘The Making of Class of 2021’ here.

Print boosts the performance of digital communications

Print was used in a series of touchpoints along the user journey for the exhibition to give an added impact to the digital campaign communications. Targeted emails as well as printed invitations were issued to the global creative community, encouraging them to register for the virtual exhibition and check out the gallery.

The combination of using the printed invitation in addition to the emails resulted in six and a half times the conversion rate of emails alone by creative registrants.

Watch part 2 about the Class of 2021 and how programmatic print boosted the results of the marketing campaign for the exhibition.

Curated touchpoints, courtesy of Programmatic Print

Based on the online viewing habits of the creatives, a series of programmatic print materials were triggered at different stages of the user journey. For the duration of the exhibition, personalised postcard packs were generated and delivered to reflect the interest of the creatives. Integrated printed QR codes drove visitor activity back online to the exhibition. As digital natives, the students discovered the new tangible dimension which digital print brings to their art.

Speaking about the success of the initiative, The Drum’s co-founder and editor-in-chief, Gordon Young says: “It was clear that programmatic print played a vital role in boosting awareness and engagement for the exhibition. Much higher than if we’d gone with a purely digital marketing option.”

Print professionals looking to develop new services and future revenue streams can give their print buying customers the opportunity to strike up a one-on-one communication with their customers by integrating programmatic print. Brands can also use it to measure the return on the investment in their print campaigns.

Picture of programmatic print canon booklet.

6.5 times the conversion with programmatic print

Find out how programmatic print was used to boost target engagement for the ‘Class of 2021’ exhibition by reading the whitepaper.

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