Can digital editions save newspapers?

Hi everyone,

Not sure if you read Gary Randazzo’s editorial this week in E&P, called How Digital Editions Can Help Save Newspapers, but if you are a publisher (or work for one) then you really need to read Gary’s article.

According to the Founder of GWR Research, “The printed newspaper has advantages for readers and advertisers that are different from an Internet website, and the digital newspaper edition has delivery options that are different and superior to the print product. And by developing a symbiotic relationship between the print and digital editions and the website, newspapers have the ability to create audiences that can be delivered to advertisers. These audiences can become loyal consumers of newspaper products.”

I couldn’t have said it better myself.

For years, the digital team at NewspaperDirect has been spreading this gospel at conferences, in meetings with publishers, in magazine articles and on this blog. A number of our publishing partners have embraced it and have invested in their electronic editions AND the marketing of them to their print subscribers, website visitors, through PressDisplay.com (that serves thousands of libraries, hotels and corporate clients), and PressReader for smartphones, tablets and eReaders.

I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve gone to a publisher’s website and can’t find the link to their digital edition. I know it’s there somewhere, but it’s so small or so far down the page, it’s almost impossible to find. Some publishers give more real estate to banner ads that bring them far less value than their own product. It’s very sad, actually.

Not so with La Presse – one of our more progressive publishing partners who understands the value of its electronic edition and the importance of marketing it. Check out the La Presse home page and you’ll find their latest digital edition issue front and centre on the webpage, above the fold.

And once you click on it, you’re taken to a landing page with a video demonstration on how it all works. I think it’s quite brilliant, myself.

Anyway, you must read Randazzo’s 4 step approach to developing a market in which the print/digital product could be combined with the newspaper’s website in a way that builds market share, revenue and profits. And whatever you do, don’t forget the critical success factor he adds at the end – Marketing!

Then let me know what you think by leaving a comment OR by emailing us at publishing@newspaperdirect.com.

Gayle