In the old days, you published paper: newspapers, programs, calendars, schedules, newsletters.
While paper may still be called for, nowadays paper should ALWAYS be accompanied by a digital version.
Why? Digital is where your audience is.
Plus digital is better than paper because:
* It looks better
* Digital content supports links users can tap on and explore something else
* You can gather valuable end user behavior stats from how people use your digital products
* You can reference a digital version any time
* No paper to throw out
* You can email it to someone
* The audience you want is looking for digital
So if you’re an old school paper product, you should also get a new digital version to accompany.
And if you are a brand new magazine? You should lead with digital – and maybe also have paper. The reach of digital is vastly larger than paper. With a single link posted to Facebook, you can reach more people than hundreds of dusty paper mags lost in stacks of free handouts around town ever will.
But isn’t the paper experience unique? Isn’t leafing through something like Vanity Fair a saturating physical experience that can’t be replicated online?
Not any more.
With gorgeous digital platforms like Issuu at the ready, you can have the exact same experience. Except it’s better because it’s on your iPad.
So how should it work?
Here’s the experience the audience wants.
After creating a digital version of their programs (like this one from Steppenwolf), theatres include a link to them in those targeted “Information about your visit” emails sent to audiences in advance of the performance.
So if I’m an audience member, I get an email before the show (because the theatre knows I’m coming), and I can pull up and study the program at my leisure at home – including all those ads. In the quiet of my home or coffee shop, I can read deeply about all the things in the program, and also click or tap through to all those advertisers.
Can you see how this is vastly superior to quickly leafing through pages in a dark theatre when you can’t really see?
Digital is much bigger bang for the buck, right? It’s a win win for everyone. Instead of limiting the time the audience will study the program to 10 minutes in their seats before the lights go down, you create a better experience they can look at in an environment much more receptive to reading and processing. Plus they can also learn all about the play before the show and come prepared.
And what do you do after the show? You send that follow up “Thanks for coming” email (amazing how few theatres do this) that includes another link to the digital program. The audience goes home, they study it some more, they send it to a friend, they read all about their favorite actors. They post a link to the program on Facebook and tell all their friends to see the show. Very valuable. Actually, that digital bonding/branding experience with your customer or audience member is 100% INVALUABLE.
Whereas the value of paper-only advertising is approaching zero. If you’re trying to reach new audiences, advertising in primarily paper-based media ain’t gonna do it. But people keep doing it because it’s familiar. You know that old expression about how “half of advertising spending is wasted – we just don’t know which half”? Now we know: the half spent on paper is the wasted half.
Digital is better all around.
Net net: If you’re still primarily working in paper (or paying to advertise there) you’re missing the boat. And your audience.
And remember, your digital practices are proxies for your core business. So if your audience sees you using the latest digital practices, they will assume your work (whether it’s food, theatre, beer, whatever) is also cutting edge.
Whereas if they see you using outdated print techniques more appropriate to their grandparents’ generation, they’ll assume the work you are advertising is similarly musty.
He’s here, he’s there, he’s Zelig. A classic under the stars.
SW 15th and Yamhill
In yet another creative summer film offering around town (note this is different from the established Top Down Rooftop Cinema series), the NW Film Center is bringing outdoor movies to the South Waterfront on August 3-5.
Saturday, August 3
SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN (dusk)
Directors: Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly
Join star Gene Kelly and friends for this dazzling, exquisitely saturated Technicolor musical about filmmaking, widely regarded as one of the finest and most endearing films to come out of the Hollywood studio system. (103 mins.)
DAZED AND CONFUSED (midnight)
Director: Richard Linklater
Linklater, in one of the most successful and iconic comedies of the ‘90s, trains his camera on the last day of the ’75-’76 school year, where two social groups—incoming freshmen and soon-to-be-seniors—navigate the uncertain, charged waters of being teenagers with nothing to do and nowhere to go. (102 mins.)
Sunday, August 4
Director: Steven Spielberg
A killer shark. Frantic masses on the beach. Roy Scheider, Richard Dreyfuss, and Robert Shaw in their heyday. Marvel as these five amazing forces collide in the first blockbuster ever to grace the silver screen, before blockbusters were a weekly occurrence. (124 mins.)
Monday, August 5
BLUE VELVET (dusk)
Director: David Lynch
A young man (Kyle McLachlan), upon finding a severed ear in a field, sets forth on a journey through the unexpectedly seedy underbelly of his hometown in Lynch’s maniacally warped yet visually sumptuous vision of small-town Americana. (120 mins.)
DIRECTOR: SRDJAN DRAGOJEVIĆ
A small group of gay activists in Belgrade strikes an uneasy alliance with a war-hardened Serbian crime boss whose fiancée demands an extravagant wedding that only gay theater director Mirko and friends can provide. In exchange, macho Limun reluctantly agrees to provide security for their planned pride parade. Inspired by Belgrade’s tense 2010 gay pride parade and set shrewdly against the lingering xenophobia of the 1990s Balkan War, Dragojević’s surprisingly hilarious, deeply humane comedy—a Serbian box office smash—is a rollicking, poignant take on a vital human rights issue. “In addition to gay rights, the film affirms the future of the region’s states as mutually respecting, tolerant societies, united not by class consciousness or ethnic blood rivalries but by liberal values.”—The Boston Review. (115 mins.)
Sunday, July 21
Portland Art Museum