Physical and digital advertising complement and support each other. The best impact and interest is achieved by communicating first with physical advertising, and then following up with digital advertising. This was demonstrated in PostNord’s neuromarketing study.
Physical advertising provides the capability to communicate longer and more detailed messages, as most consumers focus better on such materials and can therefore perceive a greater number of relevant elements in an advertising campaign. The emotional involvement is also higher with “hands-on” advertising materials, whereas the same effect is not achieved if the digital channel is used first. Physical advertising can establish a positive underlying attitude towards the brand, and this attitude can then be further utilized via the digital channel.
Digital channels generate greater cognitive stress, which means that the consumer’s attention is more fragmented and that she/he is less likely to pay attention to relevant messages. This results in less emotional commitment to the brand. But if digital advertising is used after physical advertising, it can actually reinforce the effects involved in brand communication.
According to PostNord‘s strategic market analyst Karin Nilsson, the biggest surprise in the survey was that young people respond well to physical advertising: “Most people believe that the most effective way of communicating with young people is via digital channels. But this study shows that physical advertising creates greater motivation, emotional involvement and attention among all recipients – even those in the youngest generations.”
About the study
The neuroscience study Behind the Mind was carried out by PostNord in collaboration with Ipsos and Neurons Inc and includes neuroscientific data from 200 people who looked at a mix of addressed and unaddressed direct mail and advertising in various digital channels, banners, digital folders and e-mail. The advertising campaigns were from well-known Swedish and Danish companies, such as IKEA and SuperBrugsen.