Print is NOT Declining Anymore
Most people say that by 2020 most printed media will be gone. I think anyone who makes those types of comments doesn’t understand history. Just type into Google “The Death of TV” and you’ll see hundreds of articles predicting the end of television. The evolution of the internet doesn’t kill off these channels… it makes us look at them differently because they are used differently by consumers.
7 Reasons to Rethink Print
Here are a few reasons why there might be an amazing opportunity in the print channel:
- It grabs attention: Have you noticed how many fewer magazines and print newsletters you are getting in the mail these days? I don’t know about you, but I definitely pay more attention to my print mail. There’s just less mail, so more attention is paid to each piece. Opportunity? The decisions that magazines like Newsweek are making leave a clear opportunity for content marketers to fill the gap.
- Its focus on customer retention: Sixty-four percent of B2B marketers create original content for customer retention and loyalty goals Historically, the reason why custom print magazines and newsletters were developed by brands was for customer retention purposes. In a recent CMI webinar, Carlos Hidalgo, CEO of Annuitas Group, stated that one of the biggest problems marketers have with their content is that they forget to nurture customers AFTER the purchase decision was made (we have a winner!).
- There are no audience development costs: Publishers expend huge amounts of time and money qualifying subscribers to send out their magazines. Many times, publishers need to invest multiple dollars per subscriber per year for auditing purposes (They send direct mail, they call… they call again… so that the magazine can say that their subscribers have requested the magazine. This is true for controlled [free] trade magazines).
- What’s old is new again: Social media, online content and iPad applications are all part of the marketing mix today. Still, what excites marketers and media buyers is what IS NOT being done (can you say non-traditional?). They want to do something different… something new. It’s hard to believe, but the print channel is new again and is seeing a rebirth. Could we possibly be seeing a golden age in print, like we are seeing in television?
- Customers still need to know what questions to ask: We love the internet because buyers can find answers to almost anything. But where do we go to think about what questions we should be asking? The print vehicle is still the best medium on the planet for thinking outside the box and asking yourself tough questions based on what you read — it’s lean back versus lean forward. If you want to challenge your customers (like Harvard Business Review does), print is a viable option.
- Print still excites people
- Print lets people unplug: More and more, people are actively choosing to unplug, or disconnect themselves from digital media. People find themselves turning off their phone and email more to engage with printed material.
Online content marketing is definitely here to stay. So say “yes” to social media, apps, and the rest of it. But don’t forget that print can still play an important role in your overall content marketing mix.
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