Perspective: the Role of Print in a Digital Ageby Caleb
Remember print media? It's not doing so well, at least not by traditional measures. Of time spent with all types of media, people only spend 5% with print. Digital, mobile and social are all competing for and capturing the scarce resource that is known as attention. With it follows advertiser interest and dollars.
Print is dead.
Despite general loss of hope for print media, there are several categories that are growing. There are signs of life.
Weekend Editions, such as The New York Times Magazine, are experiencing an uptick in circulation. The California Sunday, its West Coast cousin, just launched to great fanfare. Print On Demand, which includes services like Blurb and Artifact Uprising, is seeing an increase in new titles published. Bookazines are defying long-established definitions of "book" and "magazine" to result in sales growth. Monocle Magazine is leading the way. Yet even outside of these categories are other examples. Vogue China is expanding, thanks to a booming luxury market. JCPenney, Bonobos and J.Crew are doubling down on print catalogs as those that receive them spend more online, and the list goes on and on.
So what exactly is happening here? The print business, as it once was, is dead, but the medium itself is alive and well. It's finding itself. It's confronting its weaknesses, things like physical wear and tear and costly distribution, and turning them into strengths. As it turns out, these very limitations are what make print special.
To continue reading about print's new role and Carrot's thoughts on brands can take advantage, click here.