Are paper magazines dying out?
The apocalyptic prophecy about paper-printed magazines and newspapers seems less and less exaggerated day after day. Digital media advances quickly, and with today’s technology – tablets, smartphones, e-readers, notebooks and so on, it becomes easier and free for anyone to access any information that you’d usually see in a newspaper, for example.
In theory, this might very soon make old-school printed newspapers and magazines obsolete. In Bulgaria for example, most of the private-owned magazines and newspapers are already working without much profit.
Still, there are many people who choose to read from the good old paper, than from the screen. Most of the older people in my country, for example, don’t want to learn about the new technology and they probably form the most part of paper-readers.
“But not only the form(paper) is important”, the marketing specialist Svetoslav Kantardjiev argued in an interview, “it is actually the exclusive and unique content that drives people to buy and read the good old paper magazines and newspapers”. And I think he’s right, judging by the success of the magazine in which he works as a CMO – Biograph.
This is probably the most successful monthly edition in Bulgaria. While others make apocalyptic prophecies about paper media in behalf of digital, Biograph magazine is growing its readers base rapidly.
What’s so unique about the content? Well, probably that it is not targeted to all people – featuring just gossip and various life tips, but rather focuses on the more intelligent segment of market, which has higher expectations and demands. As the title says, Biograph features many biographies – and not in their short variants – of politicians, writers, actors, artists, scientists, etc. It does contain much of what you’d expect to see in a lifestyle magazine – recipes, news about famous people, ads – but they are presented in a much more practical and appropriate way.
So, my humble conclusion is that magazines and newspapers are not dying out at all. It is just that they would have to follow the advice of Svetoslav Kantardjiev and the example of Biograph, and focus more on the quality and value, which the magazine brings to the readers.