Magazines – What’s on Your Mind?
Posted on 31st December 2019
We thought you might be interested in why scientists and psychologists say that the contents of a printed page are remembered more easily than the same information in a digital format.
Looking to science
Unsurprisingly, the US Postal Service (USPS) was looking for evidence to prove that print was still relevant in a digital age. Back in 2015 they used neuroscience to look at people’s brain activity and how long people paid attention to content in digital and printed formats.
Most viewed printed advertisements for longer than their digital counterparts, but they were more focused on specific details in the digital ads such as price or time.
The study included a follow-up quiz about the information in the advertisements. Whichever format people had seen, they remembered about the same amount of information immediately afterwards. However, a week later, people who had viewed the printed advertisement retained much more of the information.
Records of brain activity while people viewed the advertisements showed that most people had emotional and physical responses to the printed advertisements. The researchers concluded this was the reason people could quickly and confidently remember the contents of the printed versions.
Serious for strategies
This is an important clue for marketers who want to plan just the right approach for their strategy.
For example, busy consumers with just 10 seconds to spare might make impulse purchases promoted through digital advertising. On the other hand, a product that needs to be explained might be advertised much more successfully in a printed format.
A preference for print
Although participants in the research said that they similar had preferences, regardless of whether they saw a printed or digital advertisement, their brain activity told a different story. The printed advertisements created a stronger subconscious sense of value and desire for the product or service.
How did they know? Previous research showed that a specific part of the brain is responsible for these responses and could be used to predict purchasing decisions.
More recently, an international study looked at people’s attitude and behaviour concerning print and other media. It came to some interesting conclusions.
Enjoyment – 70% of people prefer to read printed books and magazines and enjoyed reading in print rather than electronically.
Understanding – people feel they understand more when they read printed material and trust the content.
Reading habits – people read printed material more regularly.
Health – over half of the people asked were concerned about spending too much time using digital devices.
Action – almost half said that they would be more likely to take action after seeing a printed advertisement compared to a digital one.
Attention – more than two thirds said they don’t pay attention to online advertisements.
Choice – people said that they wanted to be able to choose whether they receive printed or electronic communications.
Just give us a call if you would like to take advantage of the power of printed advertising.
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