Make Your Marketing Pop With Color And Type
Two of the most important decisions in any print marketing campaign are color and typography. When combined in an appealing way, color and typography interact to create a lasting visual impact, reinforcing recognition and strengthening brand identity.
Typography should be simple but not simplistic. With so many options, the key is to select fonts that are easy to read and consistent with your brand image. For headings, consider a “sans serif” font to lead the eye vertically down the page; Helvetica and Arial are the most commonly used sans serifs and work across platforms. For regular text, consider a “serif” font like Times New Roman; the hooks and feet in these fonts connect the letters as you read horizontally, reducing eye fatigue. Your designer may encourage you to select overly stylized, artistic fonts, but readability -- not innovation -- is the goal.
Once your fonts are selected, attention turns to consistent size and spacing. A small increase in font size and height can significantly increase readership and retention. Add a little extra space between lines to make blocks of text easier to read. Connect a heading to the text that follows by leaving a little less space after the heading than before it.
The next decision point is color. Again, it’s not about the latest trend recommended by your designer. It’s about selecting colors with high contrast to make your printed materials easier to read, thus improving comprehension and reading speed. Black and white are at the opposite ends of the spectrum, so black type printed on a non-glossy, white background is the quintessential combination to evoke strength and clarity for your main copy. A completely black-and-white piece, however, would have low readership; statistics show that materials printed in color are read 80% more often than black-and-white. So, introduce your corporate color palette, those colors associated with and complementary to your logo, in headings, subheadings, graphics and pull-quotes. As you move to secondary and tertiary colors, choose carefully. There are extensive studies on the psychology of color, much of which is subjective, culture-specific, and at times even contradictory. Two readers can perceive the same color in different ways.
Stick with the tried-and-true when making color and typography choices to produce clean, easy to read collateral that creates the visual reaction you want.
Surveys Say: Demand For Personalization Grows
If you think personalization is important in marketing, you ain’t seen nothing yet. Not only is personalization important, but its importance in all areas of marketing is growing.
Recent surveys tell a powerful tale. Although much of the data comes from the world of email and online marketing, the conclusions can be applied to all areas, including print. Whether it’s for postcards, newsletters, email, or mobile, relevance increases response rates, increases dollars per sale, and deepens customer engagement.
A 2013 survey from Responsys found:
• 61% of U.S. consumers feel more positive about a brand when marketing messages are personalized.
• 44% of consumers are less responsive to non-personalized messages.
• 53% are more likely to purchase when a brand personalizes digital communications.
• 52% trust brands that enable consumers to share their marketing preferences more than brands that do not. 
These data are powerful and illustrate the reasons why personalizing your print and multi-channel marketing go beyond response rates. So many points of marketing contact are individualized now that customers expect it. If one brand isn’t personalizing to consumers’ preferences and desires, they know another brand will. It’s the nature of marketing and attracting and retaining customers.
Personalization has become so pervasive, in fact, that real-time personalization is growing exponentially. According to a survey by Neolane in partnership with the Direct Marketing Association, 77% of marketers find real-time personalization to be “highly important,” and 44% say they're either currently deploying or planning to deploy real-time marketing.  The top three benefits they see? Marketing effectiveness and precise targeting (76%); increased customer satisfaction and experience (67%); and increased customer retention (60%).
While real-time personalization generally applies to the world of email, mobile, and banner advertising, the implications for the world of print are clear. Consumers’ affinity with personalization transcends media and channel. The increased response and conversion rates, increased dollars spent per sale, and higher levels of customer loyalty consistently reflected in case studies (both print and online) are powerful evidence.
Consumers expect to see personalization in your marketing communications. Are you giving them what they expect?