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A touch of class

Surrounded by some of history's greatest paper makers and stationers, Julia Hutchison, APA COO, is heartened by the enthusiasm and passion marketers and media decision-makers still have for print. Just don't get her started on paper stocks and thermochrome inks...

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A while ago I had the pleasure of taking part in a roundtable discussion all about the role of print. Sitting alongside me in a very grand meeting room in the Stationers' Hall near St Paul's were a number of senior media and marketing executives, all gathered to theorise and debate the future of print.Now, while I fully admit to being evangelical about print, whether it's the latest issue of the John Lewis magazine or even the IKEA catalogue, I was expecting there to be a section of the room that wasn't so upbeat. Despite the research, stats and great case studies, print still has its detractors, with the old cost argument of print vs digital rearing up (of course, digital has a significant cost, both creatively and environmentally - but that another story.)

But sat there, surrounded by portraits of great newspaper makers and stationers, I quickly discovered that not only did everyone agree that print still had great potential, but it remained one of the most effective media for persuading customers to make a purchase. "People look at different channels for interest but there are certain media where they definitely make the decision to buy," said Danny Homan communications and development director of Historic Royal Palaces. "Print is one of those."

Across the table, John Willacy, media director of media agency MC&C, agreed, saying, "Print is absolutely a place where people are making decisions to find more information or make a direct purchase." Meanwhile......Read More

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