Just because you can doesn’t mean you should.
While the lure of digital publishing — the bright, shiny object of the marketing world — is intense, don’t be swayed away from a long-proven and treasured print model. This advice comes from industry expert Diane Kenwood, who offers sound reasons why print magazines still reign supreme for consumer publishers.
“Digital is where the buzz is, but, for many consumer magazine publishers, print is where the money is. We all know that digital is a central part of publishing’s present and future, but from time to time, we do need to remind ourselves of the enduring value of print,” Kenwood writes in InPublishing.
“I make no excuse for reminding those in our industry who are so bedazzled by digital, that good-old print is still the bedrock of the greater part of what we do, and still, in the majority of cases, contributes the lion-share of profits,” she continues.
What is it that makes print such a solid bet?
“The most obvious potency of print is the physical experience of it. Reading a magazine is a distinctively individual, lean-back encounter. The vast majority of us spend most of our days looking at screens, and plenty of our leisure time doing the same,” she writes, noting “in the same way that a virtual relationship can never satisfactorily replace a physical one (viz Spike Jonze’s thought-provoking exploration of this in Her), so a screen experience can never be a fully satisfying substitute for the feel and look of paper in your hand.”
Beyond the experience, the money does the talking.
“Magazines score higher than both television and the internet on ad response and trustworthiness. 47% of magazine readers say they trust the ads they see in print as opposed to 28% of people looking at online banner ads,” writes Kenwood. “And more than 60% of magazine readers take action as a result of seeing an advert in a publication. Which, when you factor in that four out of five adults read magazines, is a pretty hefty amount of commercial clout.”
Hefty indeed, and it comes as no surprise when we hear of digital companies embracing print as a serious channel in their marketing strategy.
Print has a gravitas that digital just doesn’t carry. And that’s what makes it a long-term player in this game.