Should print magazines be part of your PR toolkit?

Digital PR

In one word? Absolutely! I’ll use Your Cat Magazine as a prime example to explain why. Imagine you’re a cat enthusiast – you adore cats; they’re part of your family. So why wouldn’t you choose to read a print magazine dedicated to this enigmatic animal as part of your digital PR toolkit?

As ex-editor of Britain’s best-selling cat magazine, I’ve seen first-hand the value of print to those caring owners who want the latest news and updates in the cat world given to them on a plate from a source they trust. Your Cat celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2019, and some of its readers have been loyal since the very beginning – while newer readers tend to be aware of its reputation.

Multiple research suggests that consumers trust print media above all other outlets. And what about the reading habits of those who choose print? Research also indicates that those who take the time to delve into a magazine are invested in the content. While most readers pick up a copy of the magazine to be informed, educated, delighted, and humoured, they will also be interested to learn about the latest feline brands and updates from some old favourites. They want the whole package – to feel like they are being kept in the loop and in touch with the latest trends.

This means that being recognised in a market-leading publication is a sure way for brands to build trust with their audience. Editors are usually selective about which brands they allow to feature on the editorial pages of their magazine, so it’s a badge of honour if you’re given the green light. While brands can, of course, pay to have an advert in a magazine, there’s a distinct difference for a product to be endorsed within the editorial content – such as through a giveaway or being featured within the new product section. If a product really does stand out and excites the editor, they may even get a whole feature dedicated to them.

But the editors and journalists of these specialist magazines need to trust the brands they are featuring – it’s their job to understand the audience and instinctually know what they will and won’t be interested in. This is where the skills of a talented PR practitioner come into play – they must know their market and know exactly what it takes to showcase a product’s credentials to a print publication. It’s their job to excite editorial teams so they feel they would be missing if they didn’t include it.

In 2019, there’s no denying that we are living in a digital age. But, with all the excitement of the statistics associated with digital available at your fingertips, print can sometimes be overlooked. It’s worth remembering that many people keep their magazines in their home for reference for months, and even years, to come – and that these specialist magazines and their content have an undeniable impact on their readers.

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