The Real Reason For The Demise of Print Media

Along with others, I have been watching the continual demise of the American newspaper. Over time, advertisers have put QR codes and other links into print media to try to measure results. Not perfect, but helpful. Then the issue becomes pay per action rather than pay per insertion. In today’s digital world, advertisers are used to pay per click and are not as big on pay per impression. The fact that 80% of the 46994613 - closeup of pile of newspapersclicks may be worthless doesn’t bother them so much because it is measurable and they can tell their boss that it is a pay for activity or output, which is better.

How do newspapers compete with that mindset? Classic thinking is that they can’t. Actually they could they just chose not to. Why could they not have offered ads with performance guarantees? That would have been even better than pay-per-click. When I have asked publishers over the years why they did not or do not make that offer, their response has universally been because they have no control over the performance, quality or value of the offer made by their advertiser.

Understood, accepted and agreed. So they have fewer advertisers and the papers shrink. Readership shrinks further as their business model fails. Why go down with the ship. Build a different ship.

I am sorry to see the demise of print media. I happy to like it better than reading on a screen and maybe I am part of a shrinking group, but there are still millions of us. And that does not preclude re-purposing

the printed content for online use. The key is to get paid for creating and printing the content. Old model thinking is on a glide path. Maybe a pay for performance model won’t work, but what’s the harm in trying?


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