The Internet is exhilarating. Magazines are enveloping. The internet grabs you. Magazines embrace you. The Internet is impulsive. Magazines are immersive. And both media are growing.
Barely noticed amidst the thunderous Internet clamor is the simple fact that magazine readership has risen over the past five years. Even in the age of the Internet, even among the groups one would assume are most singularly hooked on digital media, the appeal of magazines is growing.
Think of it this way: during the 12-year life of Google, magazine readership actually increased 11 percent.
What it proves, once again, is that a new medium doesn’t necessarily displace an existing one. Just as movies didn’t kill radio. Just as TV didn’t kill movies. An established medium can continue to flourish so long as it continues to offer a unique experience. And, as reader loyalty and growth demonstrate, magazines do.
Which is why people aren’t giving up swimming, just because they also enjoy surfing.
While reading this month’s Bon Appétit magazine, I ran across an ad that pictured Michael Phelps and the copy that is above. Curious, I searched to find out about the “Magazines. The Power of Print.” campaign. The leaders of five major magazine companies—Charles H. Townsend, Condé Nast; Cathie Black, Hearst Magazines; Jack Griffin, Meredith Corporation; Ann Moore, Time Inc.; and Jann Wenner, Wenner Media, along with the Magazine Publishers of America, worked together to develop the “Power of Print” campaign.
Reading the ad I first saw, I do have to say that it’s a great campaign that has been started here and I hope to see it expanded in the coming months. Follow this link to read the press release about the campaign. Also, there’s a YouTube clip of the publication leaders that you can view here.
I applaud the publications for putting together this campaign, especially when there are individuals out there who believe magazines are dying left and right. True, we have seen magazines and newspapers alike cease operation, but that really has more to do with the quality of the publication than anything else. In my opinion, publications that cease to exist usually fail to grab and keep their readers interested. Lack of quality journalism, creativity and overall appearance come to my mind.
So with all the technology and everything else that is out there now, publications that will stay around will be the ones that continue to engage their readers and march forward from there.