Print is a bird (just go with me here). Paleontologists regard birds as the only clade of dinosaurs to have survived the Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction event 65.5 million years ago, and now you could argue that print media is following in their footsteps. Despite industry rumblings of print’s imminent extinction due to its inability to adapt to a changing marketing climate, print is proving that it may be the only media dinosaur to survive in an increasingly innovative and technological environment. Print, like the birds did, is evolving. Print is beginning to integrate technology trends into its existence, proving its resistance and solidifying its place in the media world.
As consumers continue to expect multi-sensory experiences, we see print adapting to accommodate consumer needs. Brands and marketers are challenged now with presenting print in an engaging way, and must be careful not to let it get swallowed up in a mobile-focused space. Some market leaders are experimenting with ways to bring print into the new age and reinventing how we experience magazines, catalogs, ads and other brand materials. Below are three examples of innovative, interactive print executions that are paving the way for the future of print:
1. IKEA – IKEA created an entirely interactive catalog for 2013, filled with additional content including films, photo galleries, 3D models, inspiration and more. The catalog takes the in-store experience and brings it home, giving consumers the ability to open and close drawers, stack coffee tables and peek inside cabinets for organization inspiration. Simply download the IKEA Catalog app (available for Android & iOS) and scan the denoted catalog pages to experience the additional content. Nearly every page opens up an interactive IKEA experience.
2. Lexus – Using in-house created technology CinePrint, Lexus developed an interactive print advertisement for the October 15 edition of Sports Illustrated that comes to life when you put an iPad behind the printed page that is displaying the iPad edition of SI or lexus.com/stunning. Unlike some interactive print that drives users off the page (like QR codes), this print ad combines sound and movement to create a multi-sensory experience that brings the consumer closer to the page and allows them to interact longer with the brand.
See the ad come to life:
3. GQ – GQ partnered with augmented reality technology Aurasma to build the GQ Live! app for iOS and Android. When the app is opened and the camera is aimed at the Live pages of the GQ magazine, editorial content and advertisements come to life with video, shopping and social experiences. (Both the September and December 2012 issues include live content). Watch how it works:
As we continue to see the move from “traditional” to “interactive” print, brands will need to experiment with new ways to keep customers engaged by delivering innovative experiences and producing compelling content. Print may be a dinosaur, but it’s safe to say it won’t be dying out anytime soon.