“Print Proud, Digital Smart” …And Audience First
Those who take the time to read my commentary from month to month know I have been championing print against its “adversaries” for quite some time now. It’s not so much that I want the people responsible for marketing their businesses and organizations to think a certain way (although I’m no doubt very passionate about my views on the subject). Rather, in the interest of objectivity, I feel it’s important to hear a different voice and perspective, especially one that seems to be in the minority these days. I’ve always felt strongly that, to quote Aristotle, “The more you know, the more you know you don’t know.” This quest to keep our readers informed and give them points of consideration has been a journey of growth and discovery for me too, as I’ve been keeping up more with the ongoing conversation being had by so many people in my industry and outside of it.
While pointing out the benefits of print as a staunch advocate, no doubt due to the business I’m passionate about owning and operating, I’ve often used digital in comparison as there’s been somewhat of an either/or mentality with the two. And many times, that has come to a natural conclusion that the two can indeed work very well together. A recent article by David Pilcher published on the Freeport Press blog echoed that very point, and it’s a great read, so I thought I’d share.
Calling a Truce Between Print and Digital
Disruption, death, war – these words have been tossed about surrounding the new media landscape. But aren’t we being just a tad hyperbolic?
“The relationship between print and digital is complicated, to say the least,” writes Aisling McCarthy in Media Update. “While they are often seen to be at odds with one another, is it impossible to think that they could coexist? And even more than that, could they not work together?”
Indeed, they do work together, and have been for years. And because brands are embracing the idea that print and digital can work well together, the “print proud, digital smart” mantra is catching on. Why? Because that’s the way our audiences want it.
…“Perhaps it is better to think of print and digital as two sides of the same media coin, rather than opposing teams fighting for readership.” McCarthy reminds us…
“Publishers need to start by thinking about what their consumers want, and then create a point of difference between their print and digital platforms,” McCarthy continues. “Both platforms offer creative opportunities, and the key is to use them to offer your consumers a more holistic experience with your content.”
She’s right. And as a fan of Samir “Mr. Magazine” Husni, McCarthy understands that the audience-first approach is the foundation for a successful publishing model in this new media landscape.
“There is absolutely no reason that [print and digital]can’t live side by side … At the end of the day, it is audience first, not digital or print first,” she quotes Husni as saying in a previous article.
When you understand how your audience interacts with your content, then you can begin to carve out a print and digital relationship that meets their needs – and yours. Print and digital aren’t at war – they are both valid tools and can work beautifully side by side.
At Strictly Business, we are “Print Proud, Digital Smart” – we’ve long since taken note of this dynamic duo, as we’ve been promoting local businesses in print, online, and on social media for over 20 years now. In fact, posts to our website have shown up in Google search results for over 1.2 mllion people here in our local marketplace, and many of those are highly ranked. This is due to the fact that we produce original, valuable content you cannot find anywhere else.
Ultimately, by getting in front of your target audience – your ideal customers – and developing an enduring relationship on and off screen, there’s a deeper and more tangible connection that’s formed. It’s one that will drive both new and return business. The equation of print plus digital equals incredible potential in the outcome, from increased visibility and reach to more (and longer) engagement, improved SEO, and ultimately, achieving top of mind recognition and being entrusted as a provider of the products and services your customers are seeking.
Great things start to happen when you truly understand what your audience wants and how best to connect with them. Wherever you may be in pursuit of that goal, we’d love to be a part of helping you get there.