Print Strikes Back

The latest figures from the Publishing Association showed e-book sales falling 17% in 2016, with an 8% rise in their physical counterparts. I don’t believe print is coming back, or that it ever really went away. I believe we’re seeing a market revolt to the digitizing of everything.

Studies have shown that those who read physical publications are more engaged, and recall more of what they read (one argument against school’s shifting away from textbooks). More so than that, print gives us a chance to detach from the “screens” that increasingly are dominating our lives.

Don’t get me wrong, there was a demanded and necessary shift towards digital publications but it appears to have been an over correction. Not only were core print readers alienated, but there are signs that millennials may now be shifting back to the comfort of “real things”.

Print vs Digital shouldn’t be an either / or proposition, there are distinct markets for both (with plenty of crossover in between).

Has your organization or publication eliminated printed materials within the last few years? Now might be the time to test your audience’s demand for print.

We are on the verge of Print 2.0, but that’s because Print 1.0 never really ended.

Dan Sonners is Director of Non Profit Marketing at Conrad Direct in Cresskill,NJ. The viewpoints expressed here are personal opinions. Dan be can emailed with questions or feedback at