Print Media vs Digital Media – Is Print Making A Comeback?

Don’t believe everything you read about the printed word!

It’s a common myth that the digital age has been the death of books, leaflets and other physical media. No one reads words or looks at images, unless they’re online, right?

The truth is very different – there are many occasions when people still prefer print!

Which is why the global market for printed materials is expected to reach a massive $821 billion value by 2022!
People like to feel, smell, touch and handle print when reading and seeing images.

Let’s look at the facts and statistics behind this.

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The Dominance Of Online Communications

Since 2004 when web 2.0 went live, it would be an understatement to say that digital communication has become a really important part of everyday life. There are over 1.7 billion websites currently online! In July 2019 alone, 4.33 billion people used the internet for information, entertainment or purchases.

Does that mean no one reads magazines and other physical literature anymore? Of course not! Digital platforms have become a part of our lives, but they are not our whole lives (unless they are, in which case, we recommend you take a break!).

When considering digital magazine vs print magazine, you need to weigh up the trust factor. Due to the internet being an open platform, you can’t trust everything you read online (unless you read it from us, of course!). In fact, studies show that 56% of customers see print marketing as more trustworthy than other communication channels.

In Praise Of Printed Books

Evidence of the value people place on physical items also comes from looking at eBooks vs printed books sales.

Here’s something that could be a surprise: sales of e-books decreased substantially in the first quarter of 2019, and have been in steady decline over a four year period.

To some degree, this is due to the growing interest in audiobooks. Why read at all when someone can do it for you!?

However, sales of physical books have remained buoyant, and online and high street retailers report steady increases.

One of the factors in this imbalance between online books vs printed books is that many people still love to browse shelves (virtual or actual), make a selection and then leaf through the real pages of a real book.

It’s traditional and reassuring.

Advertising Print Media Vs Online Media

So, where does that leave leaflets, brochures, posters and flyers, compared to digital product and event information?

They all have a function and value, as shown by another illuminating statistic. 82% of internet users still find printed advertising materials helpful in making a decision about purchases.

Also, printed advertising materials are often more portable and practical than relying on digital pages. You can get your brand information right in the face of your audience, more effectively than just hoping they find you online. The other major benefit is the touch, feel smell and hi quality visual images, in your hands.

Focused & Individualised

Possibly the biggest advantage of print over digital marketing, though, is the potential to personalise it.

Modern printing technology enables cost-effective short print runs, with individual information added such as customer names or variable promotions according to addresses. Of course, some digital content such as emails can be personalised, but a personalised physical printing that you can hold has a much larger impact. In fact, the normality of digital print has made physical print all the more refreshing!

Digital media may be very creative, but it can’t get close to that level of personalised advertising potential. Clearly then, it’s not simply a case of ‘print vs digital media’. Both have their role and values in marketing, communications and everyday life!

We say print is making a comeback. Get in touch to find out more about the printing services we can offer you!

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Image source: Pixabay

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