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Experience the Brand... Experience the Message

Stimulate Response Rates by Stimulating the Senses

Today, successful marketers strive to attach both "brand" and "message" to more positive customer experiences ... and they're doing it by integrating sensory cues with branded media to create multisensory marketing experiences.

Why? Superior results!

Marketing programs and media channels that appeal to three or more of the senses can increase both customer engagement and brand interaction by more than 70%, and one of the most powerful channels to stimulate a desired response is Extra Sensory Print (ESP) — See it, touch it, feel it, experience it. It's the one medium that can stimulate all our senses.

In recent years, researchers studying human behavior have discovered several ways that the senses are tied to emotional experiences and buying behaviors. They've discovered how powerful our sense of touch really is, and just how much it can influence our behavior.

For example, it's been determined that the subtle action of rubbing your fingers over a printed image is a surrogate for touching the actual product, and is sufficient enough to create feelings of want, desire, and even ownership. What was also discovered, is that the higher the quality of paper used, the more positive the experience. But what created the most lasting impressions, and impressive responses, were the tactile experiences created by ESP, Extra Sensory Print. Tactile experiences where the flat surface of the paper was enhanced with raised textures, foils, and UV coatings to excite one's senses and dramatically improved the overall customer experience.

The evolution of digital media and interactive technology has added an infinite number of tools to today's marketer's toolbox, and the opportunities to create multisensory experiences are rapidly expanding. When considering your interactive media options, don't make the mistake of limiting yourself to digital channels alone. These tend to focus on sight and sound, with touch being limited to your fingers running across a smooth glass surface ... and don't be influenced by the misconception that print is static and strictly two-dimensional. Actually, when used creatively, print is the only channel that can stimulate all our senses. Today, advancements in print technology allow us to manipulate traditional print in fascinating ways that excite the senses, trigger emotions, and create even more powerful end-user experiences.


Those who love print do so because the media's texture and weight stimulates their sense of touch. It's also by the sense of touch that we identify luxury products — examining the weight and texture of these products to determine their quality. This is especially true for paper, whose different varieties and characteristics are associated with tradition and social significance. For example, velvety, cottony stocks are associated with sophisticated affairs, and using them can suggest a prestigious characteristic for your brand.

Today, both the paper and print experience can be dramatically improved through enhanced printing techniques, or ESP, Extra Sensory Printing... and Visions is your ESP expert. We give you the knowledge and ability to create more powerful brand experiences. Beyond traditional paper stocks, we print on any number of surfaces — from paper, plastic, and PVC, to canvas and cloth. We bring the printed page to life with brilliant color and ESP techniques like customized textured UV, digital variable foils, embossing, flat foils, digital variable UV, spot coatings, textured coatings, die cutting, letterpress and color edging. Each can be applied to standard or unconventional card stocks such as silk, cold foil silk, suede and cotton. As your ESP expert, Visions can produce remarkable, and remarkably affordable effects that set you apart, and dramatically improve the end user experience.


Sight is perhaps the most challenging of the five senses when it comes to grabbing one's attention and sustaining it for any amount of time. There is so much out there competing for our visual attention, that our eyes continually dart from one stimulating event to another. So why is print becoming even more relevant? ESP can create its own experience. Paper stocks and printing techniques are still a huge factor in defining your printed piece, but turning it into an interactive experience really engages the end user and creates more of an emotional connection between end user and brand. All visual and physical elements must come into play if you want to keep your viewer intrigued. Another futuristic way to grab your viewer's eye: hologram effects. For marketers looking to differentiate themselves, this is a great way to add another dimension to any brand experience.


The sense of smell is the most primitive and emotional of the senses, in part, because of the way aromas are wired into our neural pathways through our memories. When it comes to thinking of ways to incorporate scent into print, you probably recall scratch-n-sniff or perfume samples inside a magazine. That was years ago, and today's technology allows you to get more creative by marrying the sense of smell with your printed media. Successfully tapping into the sense of smell starts with a well thought out strategy that utilizes a particular scent to enhance your message. How can you make your brand memorable with the sense of smell? The key may be in the element of surprise — which usually happens when end users have their senses stimulated through the simple process of interacting with your printed piece.

Applying scent to paper is easy, but knowing what scent to use isn't always. If you want to be remembered, you need to surprise your readers with something unexpected, yet still relevant to your message. If you're printing cards to promote outdoor living, why not infuse the smell of pine trees? Or, add the scent of lemons or fresh cut grass into ads that are meant to invoke the emotion of joy or positivity. Once you've figured out what scent to use, how do you infuse aromas onto print? The two common ways are to use scented paper or scented inks. Visions can help you integrate the sense of smell with either approach.


Paper naturally creates a broad range of sounds when ripped, folded or crumpled. Think of the sound tissue paper makes coming out of a gift box or the exciting sound of opening a package. People connect with these sounds — unconsciously associating them with a feeling. Folding or crumpling paper in your hand creates an experience, and the addition of sound makes it that much more memorable. In addition, we've come a long way from the original singing birthday cards with the clunky, tinny sounds. New technologies now allow us to manufacture affordable chips, speakers, and batteries that are small enough to integrate without the clutter. But keep in mind, the more memorable, and most successful printed pieces stimulate a variety of our senses. On your next marketing communications piece, you might want to consider the integration of sound.


Taste and smell are closely associated. Food and beverage advertisers in particular are wise to take advantage of the synaptic cross-traffic between these two senses. For example, anyone passing a bakery can relate to the comforting aroma and the powerful association to taste memories (and tummy rumbles, too). But, finding creative ways to apply taste to paper does have its challenges — chances are, no one wants to lick a direct mail flier just because it says you will love the taste. But there are workarounds that will entice end users to engage. For example, "First Flavor's Peel and Taste" system involves removing a thin, dissolving, edible strip similar to Listerine's Breath Strips. End users are familiar with this type of taste system, and will be more likely to engage — especially if there is a pleasant aroma.

When it comes to attracting attention and getting consumers to take action, you can't underestimate the power of multisensory marketing. Today's consumers are becoming more and more desensitized to singular messages, and the advances in technology only drives their desire for more interactive experiences. Adding multisensory elements to printed materials creates a stronger customer connection, and associating your message to sensory cues can unearth your branding from the unconscious memory weeks or months down the road. Giving you the perfect vehicle to improve brand/message recall. Multisensory marketing products differentiate you from the clutter, and brands should never overlook the opportunity to make a deeper sensory connection through extra-sensory marketing materials.

Contact Us today to learn more about ESP, Extra Sensory Print, and how it can enhance your next marketing campaign.


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