Let’s make one thing clear: print is most certainly not dead. While print journalism is declining, the need for catalog printing and magazine printing is a mainstay in the modern world. To prove how essential printing is to modern society, I have a challenge for you. Try walking into any part of your house, office, or neighborhood and see if you can’t spot something produced by a commercial printer. Posters, books, pamphlets, magazines, all of these are tangible items produced by a company on commercial presses. Print is undeniably relevant. You would be hard-pressed to go a day without seeing or interacting with the work of a commercial printer.
Now, I have another challenge for you. Grab one of these items, be it a catalog or even a book, and try to go 2 pages in without seeing an advertisement- an add for a local restaurant, or a list of the author’s other books. All of these are permanent advertisements, which essentially means that every time you walk past that poster of the local basketball team or read your romance novel you are aware of the other products or services advertised in print. A printed advertisement is a tangible item that sticks in the mind of whoever comes across it, an advertisement that stays in one place and is consistently seen. This is in contrast to a 10 second long blip in the corner of the screen of a Buzzfeed article. One is a consistent advertisement, the other is a fleeting reminder. In this way, tangible advertising is immensely superior to online advertising.
With this in mind, what company wouldn’t want to advertise in print? This is part of why printing is a 165 billion dollar industry in the US that won’t be going anywhere soon. While magazines such as Times and National Geographic are popular, smaller catalogs and magazines that require a dedicated catalog and magazine printer are essential to the dispersion of information, as they appeal to niche and local environments. For example, a fishing company won’t pay for their ad on the Times Magazine, they will place it in a niche fishing magazine.
These tangible advertisements are also more effective because they are more trustworthy and legitimate than their online counterparts. Anyone can take out an advertisement online, and this can be seen in the countless hordes of spam and virus advertisements that plague many websites. To be advertised in a local magazine takes a higher level of legitimacy, as the steps involved in becoming featured are much more personal and rigorous. Rest assured, the internet-goer has much more to fear from online ads than from print ones.
Print is not dead- not by a long shot. Print has been a part of our everyday lives and will continue to be so. If your business isn’t using printed materials as a part of the strategy to advertise and market its products and services, you’re missing out on creating a lasting relationship with your customers and prospects.