PRIMIR study investigates retail advertising and the role of print

primirretailstudy1-inFocusing on catalogues, circulars, newspapers, magazines and direct mail, PRIMIR (Print Industries Market Information and Research Organization), the research unit of NPES, has completed a new research study titled: The Future of Retail Advertising. Retail advertising is a major end-use segment for the printing industry. While retailers use a variety of media (differing widely depending on the type of retailer), of the total $80.5 billion in 2013 of retail advertising spending, print accounted for about $37.5 billion, not including in-store and out-of-home. Growth in retail sales, said PRIMIR, is generally steady and predictable, dependent primarily on the overall economy and consumer income. Barring another severe recession, retail spending is expected to continue at a steady pace.

John Zarwan.
John Zarwan.

According to John Zarwan of J. Zarwan Partners, the study’s author, changes in “the path to purchase” are causing numerous changes to retailers’ advertising strategies. The reinstatement of catalogues by a number of major retailers and their use by upscale e-commerce sites speaks to the power of print. Other forms of print also play a role. Also, predictions indicate that direct mail’s overall share of retail spending will decrease. Loyalty programs remain a major opportunity for print, but are most successful as part of an omni-channel strategy, incorporating digital media, as well as print. Integrating customer communications and knowing which customers will respond best to direct mail will be an increasingly important component of the omni-channel marketer.
Despite volume declines, print buyers indicated a positive perception of print’s value because of its ability to target specific markets and address many needs and market levels. The PRIMIR research also indicates that little of the projected print volume decline can be traced to competition from non-print technology. The report concludes that the printing industry can maintain a strong market in retail by proving how a print component can generate profitable sales by the most loyal customers.
This new research study was recently distributed to all PRIMIR members. For more information contact Rekha Ratnam, Assistant Director, PRIMIR Market Data/Research, at or visit:

Tony Curcio
Tony Curcio is the news editor at Graphic Arts Magazine.

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