Print was projected to die in the 21st century.
While it’s true that the 24-hour news cycle, rise of digital content, and increased costs of production have changed the way print is developed, distributed, and interacted with, the medium remains as relevant as ever. Its role has simply evolved.
Though perhaps not the most efficient method for reaching general audiences, print has proved to be an impactful platform for building clout and establishing a sense of authority within dedicated lifestyle niches.
Studies show that readers trust print media more than digital. Ultimately, print allows brands to connect more intimately with an audience than other marketing channels allow.
Fueled by this insight, savvy brands are creating substantive and stylized content that offers readers an opportunity to dive deep into the topics they are passionate about—allowing them to unplug from the internet and connect with their passion. Here are some examples of brands that are leaning in to the power of print.
Net-a-Porter has made waves in the fashion media industry by creatively approaching its original content. The e-commerce site assembled an in-house editorial team that produces 52 digital and six print magazines per year. Their commitment to print has resulted in a loyal audience of 6 million readers and over 85 million page views.
Don’t be fooled—the magazine is more than meets the eye. Porter has taken the traditional fashion print industry to task by creating shoppable content pages and an app that makes it easy for readers to scan the page and shop the goods on-demand.
In addition to wings, Red Bull gives you The Red Bulletin, a printed content machine that packs as much energy as the drink itself. The magazine helps cement the brand’s status as a friend and expert within the extreme sports community, offering high-quality photography, insider access, and a personable voice that feels truly authentic.
Beautifully shot and meticulously developed, Sous-Vide demystifies and celebrates the eponymous cooking method in Cuisine Solutions’ glossy printed publication. The hyper-niche, ad-free magazine earned acclaim from Adweek for its bold premise and saw sell-through rates at nearly twice what other magazines earn at Whole Foods. Over the course of its pages, Cuisine Solutions proves its status as the “masters of sous-vide.”
It was also created by your favorite orange-obsessed agency.
Over the past year and a half HZ has developed a print-focused content studio filled with former writers and contributors from Refinery29, Washingtonian, The Washington Post, Ebony, Esquire, and more. Issue two of Sous-Vide is slated to hit the shelves at Whole Foods, Costco, Barnes & Nobles and more this spring.