Different but Effective Print Media Choices
Print continues to be a cornerstone for mass communications. Even in this digital age, it performs like none other. In part because it has a shelf life so the message it contains can be read again and again and again without being buried beneath a plethora of Facebook posts or Twitter tweets.
Historically, the printing press is considered by many to be the most life-altering development in human history. With it, masses can receive the same information (and images) that once were available only to the few. In fact, some suggest that it launched the expansion of literacy.
According to Tatiana Schlossberg, “When Johannes Gutenberg invented the printing press in 1440, only about 30 percent of European adults were literate. Gutenberg’s invention flooded Europe with printed material and literacy rates began to rise. In the 17th century education became an emphasized part of urban societies, further catalyzing the spread of literacy. All told, literacy rates in England grew from 30 percent of about 4 million people in 1641 to 47 percent of roughly 4.7 million in 1696.”
Print publications promoted local events, news coverage and entertainment. Tucked into this, of course, are advertisements and other paid promotional messages that, over the years, has helped to keep the lights on for these daily, weekly and monthly efforts.
NewslettersAlong the way, newsletters became popular vehicles for targeted audiences. Think school or non-profit newsletters and you get the idea. These subscriptions based methods of communication, of course, are designed to provide content specifically relevant to the subscribers’ interests.
Banners, flyers and posters are also forms of print media. Pithy slogans and catchy logos provide a short hand for branding purposes that frees up the remainder of the space for important details, such as date, time, price, and contact for more information.
What most people don’t think about are billboards. While cost prohibits them from changing too frequently and they, like back of the bus cards, require advance scheduling, they reach very large segments of the popular in a relatively short period of time.
Print has evolved and, dependent upon purpose, continues to be a valuable media resource for the right audience.