The last couple of months have seen media consumers rely even more heavily than usual on phones, tablets, and practically any screen they can get their hands on to access content. While we’re all adapting to a life dominated by bright screens during a crisis like no other, the truth is that this way of living was inevitable. COVID-19 simply sped up the process a bit.
Enter digital editions
In the past, digital editions have been regarded as a side dish to the main course of a print edition, or an optional add-on to a subscription you already have.
While I may have agreed with you five years ago, the relevance of digital content increases exponentially alongside our use of technology. The technologically-advanced, data-driven society we live in needed a face-lift when it came to presenting content in a user-friendly, accessible way.
It’s time to stop thinking about digital editions as a sidekick. They’re the superheroes we deserve, and they can help your audience connect with your content moving forward. Here’s a closer look at why now is the time to shift to digital.
Timing is Everything
Print publishing is currently at a clear disadvantage. Readers need content they can access quickly and easily. In a recent survey by Publishing Executive, 54% of respondents said they were more likely to consume digital content over print right now.
During a time when emotions fluctuate hourly from optimism to hopelessness thanks to the news, it’s hard to conceptualize content in a way that ensures it will be what audiences need by the time it hits the stands or lands in mailboxes across the globe. With digital editions, the worry about what should go where and whether it will last this period of uncertainty vanishes altogether.
With digital editions, you have the ability to instantly target audiences. This gives your brand the ability to provide timely, relevant content at any given moment. Based on your goals and the desires of your readers, you can deliver content that is both strategic and effective.
This kind of flexibility is unique to digital editions, and it benefits both consumers and creators. Without the stress of publishing a well-timed and perfectly suitable print edition, publishers are able to focus on putting out content that connects with their audiences on a daily basis, and can then consider the bigger picture when it comes to dealing with larger issues like the current COVID-19 pandemic. It’s clear that in such volatile times, digital presents as a stable yet somewhat forgiving structure.
Mobile is the New Black
Average Americans spend more than 5 hours a day on their phones, and during these unusual “quaran-times,” that number has grown exponentially. With nothing to do, people are turning to their devices for some much-needed comfort and amusement. Now more than ever, it’s vital to create content that is suitable for mobile devices.
Mobile content is the key to unlocking devoted readers. Publishers need to understand that, while the idea of print editions makes for a lasting and substantial impact, consumers are greedy and impatient. Constantly devouring content, readers are on the hunt for instant gratification.
In a way, this is a gold mine for content writers. With the assurance that users will be glued to their devices for hours at a time, why wouldn’t you adapt your content to meet the standards of mobile and digital editions? You want your content to be presented in a way that ensures your target audience will actually see and read it. Going mobile is a no-brainer.
Become a Media Mogul
While adapting to digital editions may seem like a hassle, the digital format provides a plethora of benefits and opportunities for your brand. With digital editions, you have the chance to use media in more innovative and exciting ways, which will likely make your content more engaging and increase your readers’ interest. With print publishing, your options for catching the reader’s eye are limited and can be quite lackluster at times.
Don’t be afraid to experiment with different types of media in your digital editions. Take the chance to debut things like videos, image slideshows, and interactive content to get your audiences engaged and wanting more. Adapting your content publishing strategy to meet the needs of the digitally-driven time that will continue to evolve dynamically will only benefit your brand’s viability in the future.
Dive into Data
Another advantage of digital editions is the data you can gather, analyze, and use to your brand’s advantage. With digital editions, you can see what content your audiences engage most with. This will help you develop an effective content strategy with opportunities for improvement with each published edition.
Additionally, going digital means producing your content in a way that drives your readers to other aspects of your brand. Tap into your social audiences and use this time to discover new ways to increase brand engagement on all fronts. The data insights you gain from publishing digital editions may also help you adjust your social media, email, and website strategy.
These insights and benefits are unique to digital editions. With print publishing, it’s hard to truly gauge what consumers are connecting with at the moment. Digital content gives you the ability to use data in a way that will improve both your company’s achievements and your audiences’ experiences.
Get the Word Out
Especially now, it’s important to remind your audiences why they should stay connected with your brand. How will they benefit from their continued trust in your brand? What is your company offering during this time that others aren’t? How can you stand out among your competitors?
When thinking about these questions and others like them, remember that your audience wants to know how your brand is adapting to the current situation, how you’re approaching new strategies, and ultimately, what it all means for them as consumers. As a content publisher, it’s important to explain the advantages of your digital edition before you start to publish your content regularly.
With this kind of promotion, being explicit is key. Be direct with your audiences about how your digital edition will benefit them during this pandemic. Will your content be a source of much-needed distraction, or will it provide insight into what’s going on around the world?
Regardless of your purpose, the point you’re making to your audiences should be extremely clear. With the increasing amount of media produced each day, it’s important to be straightforward with your target audiences.
Taking it all in
Without a doubt, digital editions will transcend the present circumstances. While their usage may be accelerated by the inability to print and the need to create content that’s easily accessible, their rise to prominence was inevitable given the highly digital world we live in today.
The digital edition format is a new extension of your brand. Shifting to digital allows you to publish content that you’re proud to share and meets the expectations of your readers while elevating your brand. It shows that your company understands the importance of being adaptable during times like these and beyond.
At the end of the day, the digital edition is the solution to a problem publishers have faced for quite some time, so it’s time to embrace it.