Last week, our firm was featured in the Times-Dispatch about a brand repositioning campaign strategy we developed for HCA Virginia. Our firm prefers to place our clients in the spotlight rather than beat our own chest, but it was nice to be mentioned in our hometown paper.
As branding and marketing specialists, our job is to keep pace with changes in the communications space, and, whenever possible, to imagine what the next innovation will be. We’ve been advising our clients for quite some time to invest in the online space to reach audiences.
We haven’t been as negative about the fate of newspapers as some of our colleagues. Our healthcare clients’ audiences tend to be older and still look to the paper for news and information, and it’s made good sense for our clients’ to maintain a presence. With that said, we have worried that advertising in newspapers was akin to advertising with courier pigeons. We have often asked ourselves: who still reads the paper?
After our article appeared, the answer, it seems, is Plenty.
The morning our article appeared, I got five phone calls and ten emails before 8:30am from friends of the agency and family.
Saw the article – nice work!
Great shout-out about Franklin Street and HCA Virginia!
The well-wishers continued throughout the day; when we promoted the article with our social media channels, we got even more shout-outs from peers across the Commonwealth and across the country.
What I learned from this experience is that newspaper is far from being a “dead” media vehicle. In fact, to reach an engaged and educated audience, it’s a great vehicle. Though this experience relates to a news article via PR, our clients experience similar gains when their advertising appears.
It’s easy to diss a medium when you don’t get the results you want. But instead of blaming the medium, maybe we need to re-calibrate our expectations of the type of results we do want. Newspaper as a medium is certainly in transition. Circulation is shrinking but for a few papers. Reporting staffs are thinning out, making it harder for media relations. And costs inevitably increase.
But, if want to reach an informed, educated and engaged audience, newspaper is still worth the investment.
What do you think about advertising in newspaper? Do you find a certain style of advertising or promotion to be more effective? How do you integrate your newspaper advertising with your digital media? We’d love to hear from you.