“Bah” Said the Man Who Does This for a Living

novusasiaWhy one content expert says “Long Live Print!” amid the growing excess of digital content that butters his bread.

Print media will always win.

Those words might be expected from someone who makes a living selling books or magazines. To hear them from an editor at a major content marketing house, though, makes you sit up and take notice.

“With the rise and rise of smartphones, the feverish consumption of content on the go is now very much the norm. Bah, I say!” writes Chua Kim Beng, an editor with Novus Asia.

An admitted late adopter of smartphones, he does see their value for some uses. “But having worked in publishing for a long time, I still prefer print to digital nine times out of 10,” Beng declares.

His reasoning is both emotional and scientific. First off, Beng finds it too easy to get lost in digital. “I sometimes get confused by the multiple links that are available on digital content. I also get annoyed by the numerous logos pestering you to share the article on an ever-growing list of social media platforms. It all seems to be designed to keep me trapped in a never-ending cycle of updates.”

And he’s a big fan of the “touchy-feely” aspect of print, singing its praises “from the smoothness of a matt-laminated sheet to the shiny and slightly sticky spot-UV effect. Compare that with the cold touch of a tablet screen, and I think you’ll find analogue trumps digital.”

Finally, he cites research to back up his claim that reading in print is a more satisfying and enriching experience. “I have no patience for long articles on my smart phone, no matter how keen I am on the subject matter,” he notes, before discussing Milward Brown’s oft-cited research on print’s effectiveness.

Perhaps most telling is Beng’s comment about analogue trumping digital. He asserts that “I’m pretty sure that brands — especially the luxury ones — realise this.”

Digital has its place, as we’ve said before. But print brings the luxe factor to the table.