The Role of Print in a Digital World

The print industry has gone through more change in a short time than most other industries undergo in hundreds of years. Print is not dead, no matter how many times you’ve heard that or how much print fills our business and work environments. But no matter how much progress has been made in the field of tech, print has found a way to stay relevant and useful.

Everything from newspapers to books to fliers continue to find their way into the office and into the hands of those that need them. Surprisingly, and despite predictions to the contrary, print has found a home in the digital world and plays an important role that weaves right through the tech industry.

Mediums Working Together

The internet is a great way to get up to the minute news and information, but this does not mean that there is no longer a need for or market for print news media. Instead, these two mediums can work with each other.

Newspaper companies have begun to create digital subscribers out of those that prefer tech, while still providing tangible papers for print readers to purchase and read, and they work side by side. By providing up to the minute news through digital subscriptions, editors can focus on publishing longer print pieces that while not breaking are still newsworthy and interesting.

Marketing Relies on Print

Even within tech companies, print materials are used for marketing because no matter how tech savvy we get we still like looking at things we can hold. The digital world and what can be created and built within it is exciting, but nothing beats having that tangible item to hold onto, look back through, or enjoy.

Marketing companies continue to use and create print materials to promote brands because it works. When an item is in front of you and can be seen it serves as a visual reminder. In print visual reminders cannot be matched by virtual bookmarking or already read emails.

Print is Preferred and Nostalgic

When e-readers and e-books were introduced, everyone thought it was the end of the traditional book, but that hasn’t been the case. In fact, publishers are finding that the demand for books is steady and the price point in some cases has gone higher. readers are ready, willing, and even prefer to purchase books over digital copies.

Granted, digital and audio books have found a healthy market, but there is nothing that can replace the feel of a book in your hands. Publishers have noticed the desire for specialty and gift editions of books and done a great job of meeting the demand.

Print Has More Digital Options

As the digital world has progressed, it brought the print world along with it and introduced tons of options and tech into the industry. On demand printing is perhaps the biggest and most digital driven option in the industry, opening up publishing to so many authors and small publishers.

The ability to digitize print work, and print digitized work has opened up so many different types of publications to so many new readers. Customizing print editions and publications has also drawn more attention and interest to print publishing, because everyone enjoys a bit of personalization in the products they buy.

These are just some of the most prominent roles of print in the digital world, but it is far from a complete list. Tech has definitely given the publishing world a new leg to stand on rather than ending it like many thought would happen. The shift was quick, but it was good for the industry and it has been managed in a way that has introduced digital trends and practices that promote the industry. Print is a way of life for us and embedded so deeply into our culture that it is sure to be around for generations to come no matter how much tech advances.


Alex is a small business blogger with a focus on entrepreneurship and growth. With over 5 years of experience covering the startup and small business landscape, Alex has a reputation for being a knowledgeable, approachable and entrepreneurial-minded blogger. He has a keen understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing small business owners, and is able to provide actionable advice and strategies for success. Alex has interviewed successful entrepreneurs, and covered major small business events such as the Small Business Expo and the Inc. 500|5000 conference. He is also a successful entrepreneur himself, having started and grown several small businesses in different industries.