In our latest blog, we reported that the good old printed flyer is maybe even more popular than ever in Germany. And this is the truth, if you look at the efficacy of this kind of promotion – it produces an incredible reach! However, one downside of this “promotion tool” is its impact on the environment. Every year, we create nearly 2 million tons of print flyers in Germany. The production process creates more CO2 than 400 flights around the world in an A320. It needs 15 billion liters drinking water and an electricity consumption enough to supply a small city. So, are print flyers a sustainable solution? Certainly not. But what’s next?

Luckily, the vast majority of Germany’s flyers today are already available in digital formats. Now that the content is already “transformed”, duplicating the reach of printed flyers remains a challenge as at least one touchpoint is needed with the targeted customer. A physical mailbox was easy to reach, you just needed a pupil, paid them some money, and they walked down the streets, sowing the seed with nearly 100% coverage (just like I did years ago). But online, it does not work as easily, and this is the problem.

With digital formats, promoters not only need the exact email address of a person, but they must obtain the explicit permission of each individual to receive advertising content. This massively narrows down the addressable audience and adds a hurdle for distribution (btw, I remember I didn’t care for stickers on mailboxes telling me not to insert ads – I did it regardless). However, this is where the smart practices come in place.

Demand driven assortments and promotions are some of the “buzzwords” of current retail concepts. Realtime changes in promotions of particular SKUs, and special offers that can immediately be executed digitally, even for a few hours, offer some precision in gaining consumer attention. Catering to that smaller audience of high quality individuals who ticked the box indicating that they want to receive promotions and consciously accepted to participate will make promotions more effective and feel genuine to the shopper. But be careful, because these customers need more attention and require more than just a standard flyer.

Targeted Ads Germany

From the outmoded scattergun approach to the modern sniper – this seems to be the way of the flyer promotion. And with this way, we could only have winners: the environment for less pollution, the consumer for receiving ads he really cares for and the retail for successfully implementing new store and communication concepts.

gap intelligence has served manufacturers and sellers by providing world-class services monitoring, reporting, and analyzing the 4Ps: prices, promotions, placements, and products for more than 17 years. Earlier this year we announced our international expansionCheck out our insights on our gap intelligence GmbH LinkedIn and email us at to learn more.