The power of print media when businesses need it most
By Terri Wiebold
Thankfully for businesses, doors are beginning to reopen and revenue streams are slowly starting to return. Businesses have been doing all they can to stay afloat, so advertising budgets and marketing dollars have been dramatically reduced. It’s times like these that customers need messaging the most, and reminding them that your business is here and ready to serve them is critical. Print media is precisely the way to reach them, because we’ve been their source of comfort and normality these past few months. Now more than ever, our readers want to hear from you.
So here it is, a publisher’s case for why businesses need to invest in print and why consumers should honor that investment.
Most who are reading this are likely not sitting at their computer at the moment; chances are they have selected a comfortable spot to sit and spend some time “in” their community. They are looking forward to connecting with the things that are familiar to them without the intrusion of unwanted messaging they have no control over. The relationship is on their terms. There is something nostalgic about the lingering smell of ink on the paper and the comforting feel of the newsprint under their fingertips. There are no bright harmful lights, no instant messages, no keyboard clicks or pop-up solicitations – just them and their community.
Reaching consumers when they are in this relaxed mental space is important for message reception and retention. The visual images you present (a logo for example) become associated with the feelings the consumer is experiencing while reading the paper – which is likely to be positive. They read a story about the accomplishment of a neighbor who has started a new business or a friend’s child who has won an award, and they feel good. Those feelings automatically translate to the product or service being presented, which often leads to product and/or brand affinity.
Participating in a reputable publication that is valued and has established trust in the community also builds brand loyalty. Presenting information in tangible print also gives the message accountability and a legitimacy; consumers have evidence that the offer or promotion exists, and they trust it is not going to disappear from the screen or get lost in some digital abyss.
And let’s not forget privacy and security. No passwords, no sharing of personal information, no logins. There’s no cyber virus that is going to attack them for viewing the message, and they are not vulnerable to anything unknown. They feel safe.
There is a permanence to print media, which offers extended value. Much like sharing your favorite book with a friend, The Connection can be passed along to other family members or friends and viewed multiple times or archived for historical reference. This provides opportunity of additional exposure for business advertisers.
All stories in The Connection with the exception of the front cover (which has no advertising on it) start and finish on the same page. For advertisers, this is important because readers stay on the page longer – an average of roughly two minutes, or 120 seconds, and they don’t turn the page, never to return. Imagine for a moment how long they stay on an electronic page or link … likely no more than a few seconds at most. Print media results in longer exposure time to messaging, which is critical in establishing brand recognition.
To our business advertisers who recognize and value these principles, we say, “Thank you for partnering with us.” To our readers, please take note of the advertisers in this issue (and every issue) and thank them for their participation in The Connection.