Voice of the Industry
Why Angie's List Publishes a Print Magazine
By Bob Sacks
Published: October 17, 2012
I think that my friend Drew Davis has an expression in his lectures that captures the essence of Angie's List printed magazine quite well, he says "that the only thing that distinguishes you in a digital world is print"
As I said elsewhere tonight in another posting "Every title has a different formula and a different threshold for success or failure. Each title has a unique set of niche readers and they, the readers, place a different value on the content for that particular area of consumer interest. "
Print isn't dead for those who know how to use it. Does it take more knowledge and focus now than ever before, yes perhaps that is true. But the absurd logic that print is dead comes mostly from disenfranchised ink-on-paper publishers and reporters. They mistake a change in dominance for death. Loss of dominance is not equivalent to death-it just feels that way. The fact is there are billions being made every day in print, and there will be billions made in print for the foreseeable future.
It seems to me the biggest problem is the odd loss of innocence we once had. Not too long ago there were basically three ways to communicate: Print, Radio and TV. Now there are dozens of ways and variations of each to reach out for a profit to readers and businesses globally. So when some of us declare that print is dead it implies that we just don't like competition and wish we were back in the days of wine, roses, and no competition.
Get over it and get back to producing products that are valuable and worth buying on any substrate. In the value chain of reading and the distribution of ideas, the only true measure of the value is what the customer is willing to pay for it. Most of the discussion going on about print or digital distribution is a red herring. At the end of the day if you wish to survive and be profitable on any substrate, I suggest you make your content worthwhile. It is that simple.