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Reading print versus digital

Because digital media is a fairly young communications channel, it is often interpreted that content should be delivered in much the same manner as it would be for print.

This misconception has led many marketing professionals to offer content on their websites that is nearly identical to their direct mail content. But the truth is that this is a waste of time, money and consumers' patience.

New research conducted by Gartner confirms the need for organizations to deliver unique reading material for each channel. For example, the survey found print reading to be about level with consumption of on-screen digital media, and that younger age groups are more content with reading digital than older generations.

Additionally, men reported a generally easier time reading on-screen than women did, but both reported digital reading was on par or more difficult than print.

"Trying to sell the same basic content to the same consumer in different formats risks alienating the consumer, who will balk at paying twice for the same thing," said Nick Ingelbrecht, research director at Gartner. "The survey results confirm that multichannel content distribution is essential for reaching consumers who are consuming near equal amounts of print and digital text."

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