Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Selling print Selling digital print - adapting your selling to new situations

  Trinity Mirror Group has announced the launch of a new daily tabloid “New Day”, which will launch nationally on 29 February, is expected to target a mid-market audience occupied by the Daily Mail and Daily Express.

Yet just a few weeks ago the Independent announced it would be dropping its print edition. 

What's  going on ?

Well, marketeers might respond that the two decisions relate to different stages of the product life Cycle. The Independent is at an end stage and the New Day at Introduction Stage.

Some papers life cycle is a scant three years
. Anyone remember ‘The London Newspaper’ ? 
It was published by NI Free Newspapers Ltd  
It was a free working week daily
 available in Central London from  2006 - 2009 .
Across the product life cycle ,the  focus of selling needs to change.  At the introductory phase selling is more an educative communication tone / 'clucking the news round the farmyard '. This progresses though a more conventional selling stage but as the growth curve begins to tail off the selling focuses on hard negotiation. Then in saturation and decline the selling has to become more specific to the end tail market. 

The last edition of the print edition of the Independent Newspaper will be on sale on Saturday 26th March 2016.  

It represents a product life cycle of some 30 years. 

Now in its decline phase with circulation down and advertising revenues very substantially down the future of the print version of the Independent meant one of inevitable management of decline or adapting to the digital space of on-line newspapers.

As the editor Amol Rajan says
“The simple fact is there aren’t enough people who are prepared to pay for printed news, especially during the week.”

Back in the day Nostalgia
(Along with many old school readers, I will miss the 'rustle and whiff' of paper, the thud on the doormat as it is  delivered. 

The readability of print on paper is more comfortable for my failing eyesight than PC or tablet screen print

I can also  remember when the outer wrapping of your take-away fish  and chips was the previous days’ newspapers. This was long before trendy fashions for recycling and sustainability were in vogue 

On hot summer days before the ubiquitous baseball cap as kids we would make a hat out of newspaper.)

Centre page photo from Issue one of
  The New Day UK Newspaper.
Photo of the earth from outer space taken by Major Tim Peake
In a  print newspaper some of the photographs are larger than  PC screens and tablet screens. The wildlife and nature scenes are particularly arresting. (e.g.see major Tim Peake's photo from space for the New Day Newspaper) This sort of scale of image will be lost on tablet, ebooks and smartphones. 

So maybe the first sight images will now be more reminiscent of the skills of Nicholas Hilliard (1547 - 1619) miniatures!

Inevitably the on line product will change the feel of  'Indie' - as will it develop a different  type of readership.  That is progress.....

Ironically within this Saturday’s issue of the Indie, there was another related story to print’s decline. 

However the story of vellum represents a product life cycle of some 5000+ years!

 From March 2016,  archive copies of UK Acts of parliament will no longer be printed on vellum. The House of Lords has agreed with Commons Administration Committee to paper. It is all to do with cost saving of course. The House of Lords state this is around £80,000 but the vellum manufacturer says the true savings would be nearer £26,000 when better printing prices would be negotiated. As with many price comparisons there is also suggestion that apples are not being compared with apples here but lemons.

The anti-vellum lobby argue that archival paper if stored properly can last for 500 years. Paul Wright of Britain’s last calf-skin parchment manufacturer, William Cowley counters
“You can roll up vellum up and leave it on a shelf- or in a cave- for 5000 years. But you won’t find any paper manufacturer who will guarantee longer than 250 years. That takes us back to about 1750 , and the rest of history we can kiss goodbye”

Surrey's oldest newspaper established in 1859
Surrey and Hants News
 ( incorporating The Farnham Post Gazette)
 Still going strong in its print version as well as its digital.

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