Beale: Press May Have Its Day Again

Creative agencies must once again commit to the “craft of print advertising” as advertisers looking to invest in quality and effective environments start to reinvest in the medium, Campaign global editor-in-chief Claire Beale has said.

In an opinion piece this week, Ms Beale cited recent Advertising Association/Warc figures which showed that national newsbrands’ print display ad revenue grew in the first quarter of the year for the first time in seven years.

Ms Beale said: “It’s a small but significant boost for trusted, curated quality content when the narrative for so long has been decline and decay for traditional formats and established media brands. Radio (with adspend up 12.5 per cent in the first quarter of 2018 versus 2017), out-of-home (up 5.3 per cent) and TV (up 5 per cent) also look strong.

“Of course, online continues to outperform in terms of adspend, particularly in search and social media – but in the context of the recent tremors at Facebook and Twitter, the resurgence of established media is notable.

“The frustrating thing is that while the news brands that have continued to invest in their print product are starting to benefit from the upswing in print ad revenues, creative agencies seem to have lost the craft skills required to maximise the opportunity.

“At this year’s Cannes Lions festival, the UK only clocked up one – ONE! – shortlisted entry in the Print and Publishing category: Mother’s “Fck” apology ad for KFC. It was a dismal reminder that agencies have also bought the story about print’s demise and have forgotten how to create simple, powerful press ads, maybe even with some beautiful accompanying copywriting.

“Print offers a quality environment and the impact that comes from a limited, curated number of pages. It’s time agencies committed to the craft of print advertising once again.”