The science of media - Why Print?


12/02/2021 | Neil Hanley

Life in media is thrillingly tough at times. We are constantly at a frontier – and the ground upon which we stand is never static. Over the last nine years, Texere has been busy navigating the ever-changing needs of our readers and commercial partners (successfully, we hope!). 


Today, we stand here as a true multi-channel publisher – producing content and audience experiences across email, digital, social, virtual events, video, podcasts...  And yes, we still work hard to produce an evolving print product.


At Texere, we all still care deeply about print – in large part because we crucially believe in the value that physical media brings to our readers and advertisers. But why should you care?


I recently built a campaign for a client launching into the US Ophthalmology market with a genuinely innovative technology that has the potential to fundamentally change how doctors manage their workflow. The client was steadfast in their belief that digital was the right way to launch.


After much discussion and several proposals, he took a left turn: “I think we need to include some print.”

“Great, but why?” I asked.

“Because it makes us look like a real company, like we are committed,” he said. “I want to make an impact and a print ad is the largest format available to me.”


Customers are very often our best teachers... 


Everyone wants data. Everyone wants leads. Everyone goes digital. So what sets you apart from your competitors? When you look at how you are spending time with your customers and prospects, what really matters – quantity or quality?

Like what you are reading?

Subscribe to The Science of Media newsletter to get expert insights into trends in B2B marketing direct to your inbox.

Show them you care…

Sometimes prospects and customers want to sit back and take the message in without entering the infinite feedback loop. Show them you understand this. Give them something without asking for something (email address, cookies, shoe size) in return.


“But my team want leads…”

And so does everyone else. So how can you differentiate in this zero-sum game with every other vendor/partner/supplier? Perhaps you could focus on building a relationship with your prospects before asking them how much they spend on their lab/practice/manufacturing facility each year. They’ll tell you – when they know you. 


To build a good relationship, you'll need to spend some quality time with them. Once they know you and trust you, they’ll share more and more information about themselves – and you'll find out what they need or better understand how to make yourself more relevant to them.


“I already know my customers…”

It’s lonely at the top – but your competitors are rising to the challenge. You may not need metrics and you may know your customers intimately – but you'll still need to work hard to stay in front. Continue to tell your customers your story without asking for anything in return. They are busy and they’ll appreciate it! A well executed print campaign keeps you in front of your customers in between the shows, dinners, and rep visits.


Forget about metrics...

Metrics should only be a concern if you are only running a print campaign – and that's as bad as not including print at all…


“How do I evaluate a publisher's reach through print?”

You could ask your customers. Or you could run a digital campaign in parallel, preferably including email. If the email channel does not perform over time or if you can see a high volume of daily email output from a given publisher – trust me: they are taking no better care of their print data. The converse is also true. 


It’s not just about what you say but also where you say it…


If your message appears in a well written, beautifully presented print magazine that is valued by its readers (your customers and prospects), you can guarantee it will be read and enjoyed. Receiving a good magazine is like receiving a gift – and you can hitch a ride with that positive mood.


Print is a channel like any other; it does an excellent job well when executed appropriately.


We know that our scientific and medical communities still value print – and, as long as they do, we will continue to invest and innovate in this increasingly exclusive format.

My contact:
Neil Hanley

Publishing Director

Neil Hanley

Publishing Director

I started out in media in the 1990s, and I really can’t imagine doing anything else. The opportunity to start with a completely blank piece of paper and build up a business like Texere from scratch has been the most intense and enriching experience of my professional life. The lessons I have learnt at Texere from clients and colleagues alike will stay with me for the rest of my career.