Currently, the demand for magazine content has perhaps never been greater. Media companies are rapidly moving into various channels of distribution including the web, video, podcasts and a variety of apps. With such a great variety of distribution channels available, it is not surprising that the popular myth that print media is quickly going the way of the dinosaur has gained in popularity.

However, advertisers shouldn’t be too hasty to abandon their print programs in favor of digital. In a recent white paper from MPA – the Association of Magazine Media, Scott McDonald of Nomos research investigates the overall impact of print media in terms of effective messaging, and backs it up with impressive neuroscience.

According to McDonald, print magazines perform well when you consider many key performance indicators including recall, brand recognition, persuasiveness, purchase intent, and actual purchase. Further, neurological and behavioral studies indicate several important considerations when comparing print vs digital media including:

  •  Reading on paper is slower and deeper, while reading on screen is faster and more in “scan” mode
  •  Paper-based reading benefits from more focused attention, less distraction, less anxiety related to interruption, multi-tasking, and cognitive load
  •  Paper-based reading is widely associated with better transfer to long-term memory and clearer comprehension
  •  Memory and comprehension from paper-based reading is likely enriched by the multi-sensory experience of holding and manipulating paper
  •  In the case of advertising, print advertising activates neural activity associated with desirability and reward

For advertisers planning on heavily investing in digital spending over print, reconsidering advertising budgets might make sense if you wish to better capture print’s apparent superior ability to engage readers in a connected and meaningful way.

To read the entire paper click here