The ‘Print to Digital’ Transition.

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2020 was an interesting year, to say the least.

The novel Coronavirus has affected almost every aspect of our daily lives including the spread of information.

As the world continues to transition from newspapers and hard copy material to digital platforms, we are beginning to see that this process may take longer than we think.

Even though this ‘print to digital’ transformation was rapidly spurred by lockdowns and self-isolation restrictions intended to curb the spread of the virus, the data shows that certain demographics are still reluctant to completely transition.

If 2020 showed marketers anything it’s that we still have a long road ahead of us when it comes to digitally grasp the attention of target audiences.

What does this mean to advertisers selling products or services?

Digital Marketing is a marathon, not a sprint!

Take a look at the New York Times data from the last decade.

Digital Subscriptions are increasing but at an alarmingly slow rate.

We still have this notion that if we consume information digitally it should be 100% free.

In reality, this has directly affected the integrity of the information being disbursed around the world.
However, that is a topic for a completely different blog.
Also, to the people who like to think that Social Media is going to fade off into the sunset based on conspiracy theories then think about this quote.

“People belive conspiracy theories because it is phychologically easier to belive a singular and unlikely narrative rather than engage in a hard and complicated reality where your own long-term participation is needed.”

D.L. Mayfield

Other data validates this information as well.

Peter Suciu from Forbes magazine found that in 2019 the Pew Research Center reported 55% of U.S. adults now get their news from social media either “often” or “sometimes” – an 8% increase from last year.

About three-in-ten (28%) said they get their news “often,” up from 20% in 2018.

As the Pew Research’s reporters noted, “social media is now a part of the news diet of an increasingly large share of the U.S. population.”

One of the factors driving this is that now almost all news organizations now rely on social media and digital subscriptions to promote news stories. 

For many readers, instead of clicking through to the actual reporting, the social media recap seems to be good enough.

This implies that it’s fallen to each individual company, no matter the size, to be their own news outlet for what is going on inside their organization.

Your audience and the future audience want to hear the stories that define your organization and it’s on you to consistently publish this information.

Application for businesses – Digital transition requires your long-term participation.

What is required, often demanded, is updating/educating audiences has been handed to you.

The days of running stories in your local paper or favorite magazine are decreasing and the ‘middle man’ is quickly drifting away.

Now that we have this information we come to another obstacle, companies can tell whatever story they desire, sometimes untruthful.

When you give individual companies the power to tell their own story, the temptation is to inflate or publish content that inflates corporate egos.

Going back to our earlier strategy of thinking ‘long-term’, this will come back to haunt organizations that take this easy road.

“Remember that with the ‘power of publishing’ being handed to you, also comes the attention of your audience.”

The second that your community or audience catches wind of deception or disinformation, your brand perception is lost forever!
Case and point look at the way that Robinhood is being massacred on how they handled the ‘GME’ situation.

Consistently and truthfully updating your audience over long periods of time and backing your words up with your actions is the only way to create long-term brand loyalty in the upcoming decades.

This means that budgets have to be shifted to allocate more resources to digital storytelling and digital communication, either internally or externally.

Now the good news – marketing data today incredibly easy to monitor.

Don’t be scared, this is the easiest time in history to see where your budgets are being spent and what was gained for those efforts!

Money is always needed to update and educate on how your brand provides value, now you don’t have to take the ‘middle man’ at his word when he gives you publication data.

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