One of the things that Bill Maher has said he values most from newspapers is the content he didn’t know he would find when he moved through their pages.
On a now infamous opinion piece that closed an episode of his HBO show "Real Time" from last season Maher said the following:
“Newspapers may be old-fashioned, but here's what we're losing if you never see one. They are trying to tell you what's actually important, not just what's important to you. You may not read the whole paper, but you at least see headlines, making you aware that something's going on outside of your micro-targeted world of fashion or music or Wiccans or zombies or whatever you're into.”
Newspaper does just that. It seems like some digital companies are starting to catch on to this very specific power of print, deciding to leverage it to better market their own services. Over the last week or so, digital paid discovery company Outbrain has been running an ad campaign within The New York Times section fronts. Today it appears in Sports.
Outbrain works with publishers to tease their content on related sites in an effort to help them build organic traffic. You have probably seen their “container” on the bottom of article pages with a header that reads something like “If you like this you may also like …” Paid discovery companies like Outbrain can help readers find content they may not have otherwise seen, have known about, or have considered. For all involved the services they provide digitally are a win-win. Publishers and readers love it alike.
So it’s hard to ignore that when Outbrain decided to promote themselves, they did it in print. In fact, the last line of their body copy reads: “Today’s recommendation is the content you hold in your hands.” Newspaper does offer a unique sense of discovery across platform, but especially in print. There as you turn each page you’ll find a content mosaic composed of topics that you know and those that you don’t. This experience of discovery is uniquely powerful. This impacts reader engagement, wantedness, and action -- which supports the Outbrain tagline that reads, “You are what you recommend.”
When this happens all of the content on every page benefits -- especially the advertising. A great reason indeed to recommend print!
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