Short Summary: While print publishing has its merits, there are many advantages to digital publishing, especially using a dynamic digital publishing platform, that need to be considered to improve ROI, sales, and reach.
There are several avenues that a business can take to showcase its material, gain exposure, and generate inquiries. One of those routes is through traditional print publications, such as catalog printing, brochures, magazines, flyers, newsletters, and catalogs. The other route is through digital publishing. There are key advantages to both print and digital publications and quite a few advantages with digital publishing versus traditional print platforms. We will talk about both of those mediums in this article and discuss the unique advantages of using digital publication platforms.
A Quicker Timeline:
Simply put, digital publishing gives you the opportunity to get your content published faster. Instead of spending time to format the content perfectly for the printer, you can format your content in a PDF and upload it to a digital publishing platform. While a print publication will be a little more tangible, it takes a long time to produce and with paper and printing shortages currently impacting global operations, print content faces challenges related to materials and deadlines. With digital catalog publishing, you can not only get your content produced quickly, but also make it a cost-effective choice for your business.
Expand Your Reach:
Digital catalog publishing moves at a lightning speed and can be viral in minutes. Your content will reach a large number of audiences as it can be shared via links, social media, and through email. Viewers of your catalog or other digital content can crop pages and send them to themselves or to friends and family. You can share content at any time, day or night, and globally it will be accessed and seen. The digital space also allows you to engage further with your readers through social media. Gain feedback, gauge interest in a particular product or offering, and become part of the conversation directly. When your readers utilize tools like Facebook or Pinterest to share your content, it will create an opportunity for you to further your product aspirations.
Analyze Reader Behavior:
Not only will expanding your reach help further the product offering, design goals, and social marketing outreach but with a digital catalog you can track your readers’ behavior. You will become part of the discussion via social media and behind the scenes. Analytics will give you valuable insights as to how the user interacts with your content, what pages they stay on the most, what links they click on, how eCommerce platforms are performing, and more. You can track distribution patterns and check how often the catalog, or its pages, were downloaded. In a traditional print format, you would have to wait weeks or even months to get such valuable data and information. Now you can have it within hours. You can also track the performance of your digital catalog over time, which deepens your understanding of your users and plays a part in important decisions for sales and marketing.
Create a Dynamic, Interactive Experience:
With digital publishing, you can create an interactive and engaging experience for your audience. Typically, the most interaction that print content will see is flipping through the pages or circling an item (if it’s a catalog). Digital publishing not only enables you to create a digital flip catalog but you can add even more elements to it. Add video clips, pop ups, audio sound files, gif images, and external and internal links. For navigation, add bookmarks, tabs, a table of contents, an interactive table of contents, and even include a notes feature so your users can take notes within the catalog. Another huge benefit to digital publishing is you can link your digital catalog to your eCommerce website. Now buyers can browse the catalog and shop from it too. Create a wishlist or shopping cart experience so customers can add items to a wishlist and checkout with you directly or they can add items to their cart and checkout through the eCommerce site. This interactivity increases sales by making it easy for customers to consolidate their shopping experience.
Make Easy Edits As Needed:
Once you publish a print catalog or other print content, that is pretty much it for editing and correcting errors. If a printed copy is found with a typo, missing information, or an incomplete layout, it is not easy to recall the copies, correct the errors, and reprint. Also, it is expensive to do so. However, digital publishing platforms make it easy to edit as needed. After you upload the PDF, you can preview the sample as it will look when the customer views it. This allows you to see your work through the customer’s eye and edit or change the content accordingly. If you see an error, you can make the correction instantly. Some easy ways to make the changes are by replacing pages, updating links, or replacing multimedia elements. You can also add and delete pages if you find that you have forgotten to add something important or find that you need to add it later on. Another advantage to replacing, adding, or deleting pages is instantly switching out old information for updated information. You can also get these new updates out much faster so your clients and sales and marketing staff are always on the same page.
These are just a few of the advantages of digital publishing over traditional print publishing but a couple of the others to consider are the going green aspect (environmentally-friendly) and saving space in storage – both in your place of business and in the customer’s home. A digital flip catalog can be accessed through a smartphone, a computer, or a tablet and carried with the reader anywhere. It’s also available offline. While stepping fully away from print catalogs may not always make sense, you can add value to your print catalogs by making them rare or special editions. This will be something else that connects you to your customers and helps to create a dialog between you and your consumer base. With the advantages offered through digital publishing, you can create dynamic, compelling, interactive material and offer your readers much more than a static catalog.