Graphic design is a language, not a message.
It seems to be the common sense wisdom that printed materials have lost their importance in the today's marketing world because of the supposed domination of online solutions. But in reality, with the amazing improvement in speed, quality and most importantly, cost, of digital printing, companies are doing more print marketing than ever before. Savvy marketers have found new ways to make print marketing work better than ever before by utilizing print materials in conjunction with online campaigns. So, the bottom line is that print materials, and hence the need for quality print design, is here to stay for the foreseeable future.
Make a lasting impression. Tell the story.
Print marketing has certain characteristics that give it advantages over web marketing in many respects. It has the ability to encapsulate detailed and targeted information. And it commands immediate attention in a more direct way. Effective print marketing can tell a story in ways that online marketing can't.
Typography is a beautiful group of letters, not a group of beautiful letters.
It's all about style
To be effective print design needs to obey the general principles of good visual design. How those principles are applied will determine how effective the design is in conveying the desired message. That's not to say that there's any single solution to any design problem, there are always an infinite number, but design principles need to be applied. That's the difference between professional, effective design, and unprofessional design that can only fail.
At the end of the day, it's about style. What is style? It's one of those things that nobody can define, but most people know it when they see it.