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Newspapers are evolving, not dying

Newspapers are evolving, not dying

June 18th, 2019 by James Bright / Texarkana Gazette General Manager in Opinion Columns

Newspapers are dying. No one reads newspapers anymore. The advertising doesn't work.

These are the most common indictments of our business. A suspected causality of the digital age, it is no secret that print publications have had and continue to have a tough road to hoe.

James Bright

James Bright

Yet just this month Google, the king of all things digital, spent tens of thousands of dollars on print advertising to promote an event in Arkansas. There is no ignoring the subtext here. Arguably the largest company in the world that sets the standard for digital marketing finds value in buying ads in newspapers.

And this campaign isn't ending in the Natural State. Google plans to host events in multiple geographic regions of the Union spending what will amount to millions of dollars in print advertising.

Like anything, a lie that is constantly perpetuated is eventually regarded as the truth. And the real truth is newspapers are not dying, but they are evolving.

Like any media, the public's preferred consumption has changed. In our own house we have Gazette associates that only read print and those who prefer only digital. We have multiple audiences and given the tools at our disposal, we endeavor to cater to them all. That is part of our evolution.

Our digital platforms allow us to create a more robust dissemination of the news while also offering a plethora of marketing tools for our advertisers. The Gazette has evolved from a newspaper company to multimedia company, and we embrace this evolution. Today news is more accessible than it has ever been and our goal has and always will be to create products that cut through falsehoods and hyperbole to provide hard-hitting news steeped in the truth.

We endeavor to see our digital audience grow because we can offer so much more through that medium than any other. But we are not abandoning print and neither are advertisers.

Marketing is far more nuanced than it's ever been. We provide promotional approaches with a litany of opportunities that are both broad spectrum and surgical in practice. That is the goal of our evolution and the principle force behind our embracing this evolution. We can serve the people who keep our doors open more effectively by managing the dance of print and digital.

We were blessed to see a good deal of print advertising come from Google to the Gazette this month. And while we are thankful for the revenue, we are more thankful for the clear message it sends.

Newspapers, the Gazette and print media are not dying. That argument is a fallacy. In fact, we are growing, and in Texarkana, we are just getting started.

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