It’s no secret that a slew of online companies are printing magazines now. And the reasons behind each brand’s decision are as varied as the magazines themselves.
According to Piet van Niekerk in Print Power, for some brands it’s about story telling.
“For us, print was the perfect medium to tell these stories…we hope that people look to Pineapple as an inspiring source of travel content and find it useful when planning their trips,” said Airbnb’s Christopher Lukezic on their new travel title.
For others, it’s about gravitas, as Niekerk notes when quoting Pando Quarterly’s Paul Carr who says print is “the ideal format” for absorbing long articles “while improving data retention and adding more credibility and clout to serious reporting.”
Still others look to boost their brand with the luxury angle, like Net-a-Porter.
“Women love print…and there’s something incredibly luxurious about it,” says Porter’s editor-in-chief Lucy Yeomans.
For advertisers though, there’s something else at play that makes print ads so effective, according to Niekerk. He quotes Samir Husni who points out that in print, the ads are part of the experience, not an intrusion. And that is the key to their success.
“In print, ads are not ignored,” Husni is quoted as saying. “Online, it interrupts your experience. Advertising in print is like living in a house and you move from room to room at your own will. Online advertising is like being kicked off your own couch.”
So while digital ads are largely being ignored, companies like SneakerNews.com and TheAtlasMagazine.com are launching into print and finding advertising revenue that they were unable to realize from digital only, says Niekerk.
It makes sense. The readers are more engaged with the content, and the ads become an integral part of that experience. No wonder, then, that companies that have grown up online are now mature enough to consider print as the next logical step. It’s kind of like moving out of Mom’s basement and getting your first apartment. There’s nothing quite like that feeling of creating a physical space of your own.