Recently I signed up for an online course on ‘Design Thinking’ from the Interaction Design Foundation.

Several days later, I received this postcard in the mail:

Interaction Design Foundation Postcard

On the back was a short message, encouraging me to post on social media:

Interaction Design Foundation Postcard (back)

It got me thinking about the power of print. Often in our race to make everything digital, we forget the impact that physical items can have. I’ve heard it described as a ‘thud value’: where a predominantly online or digital offering can be complemented by something that ‘thuds’ on the floor when it comes through your letterbox.

In this example, it is been used to help create ambassadors and help spread the word about IDF’s training courses. I think it’s neat as it’s not been served up in the way you’d expect (i.e. online via web, social media or email), and as a result is more likely to grab my attention (the fact I’m writing a blog article about it says it all really…).

While we’re huge evangelists for digital, this is a great reminder not to discount print and non-digital items. If it can enhance the perceived value of your product, enhance your brand or help grab the attention of your customers, then do consider it – the cost may be a punt worth taking!

What could you do to create ‘thud value’ with your customers?

(On a related note, I recently joined Journey Further’s book club and received a free book with a branded bookmark in a purple envelope. If that’s not a fantastic example of ‘thud factor’, I’m not sure what it is.)

 

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