Retro Media Rebounds Against Digital

marylyn-m-readingVinyl sales are rising, radio audiences are seeing growth, and print is bouncing back with a bang. No, this is not some throwback to the fifties, this is happening right now in 2015, according to Simon Creasey in Print Week.

How is it that this legacy non-digital media is having a rebirth?

“Rather than killing off print once and for all, a growing number of brands are starting to realise that digital simply cannot compete with ink on paper – to the extent that some purely online brands are launching printed products,” notes Creasey.

Fashion and retail catalogers are reinvigorating their mailings, while digital only brands continue to see success with print media. Financial companies are returning to print as consumers put their trust more in paper than pixels for sensitive information. And if it all seems a bit ironic, you’re not alone.

“It’s ironic when you consider that because digital communication has increasingly taken over from print as the default communication medium, its sheer ubiquity means that it’s not as effective as it once was,” Creasey explains.

“And this effectiveness looks set to dwindle going forward, due to the sheer volume of digital noise that consumers have to deal with on a daily basis. These factors will help to further fuel print’s comeback as brands look to differentiate from their rivals and rediscover the unique qualities that ink on paper offers.”

To be sure, this is not a return to the “old days” of massive runs and wasteful direct mail. Print technology and data improvements are allowing marketers to cut the waste and stay in touch with their highest value customers, with tighter targeting and more strategic messaging. That makes for even better ROI which in turns keeps print in a highly favorable light.

Creasey sums it up nicely: “Based on the number of companies that have already done a u-turn on previous decisions and come back to print, it’s clear that the channel is still considered a viable route to market by some and has a key role to play, but it has to work harder than ever and will have to keep on adapting and changing going forwards, if it wants to continue to justify its position in the marketing mix.”