Making The Digital Jump

Making The Digital JumpWhen switching from print to digital media you might not feel yourself capable of addressing all the ways the change can affect your publication. In reality it is you who has control over how the print to digital leap affects you.

Whether you’ve been scared into digital media or are hoping a digital presence will give you a one-up, here are a few simple ways to make the transition with ease.

Networking Is Necessary

You put a newspaper out on a stand and it’s likely that someone will read it. Digital content doesn’t have this advantage. Just publishing to your own site doesn’t guarantee that others will see it. Whatever your feelings on online social outreach may be it is almost always necessary to garner some attention. This is the easiest way to get your content picked up by other sites and republished, as well as the easiest way to get everyday users to click through to your piece.

Offer Exclusivity

While digital editions of printed works are helpful in establishing a cross-platform presence, they do not attract web visitors who already receive a print edition. Offering your digital audience extras gives their visit value and encourages them to come back. Digital media offers many advantages to the content creator:

  • Ability to connect reader to other relative information that gives your piece credit and furthers their interest.
  • Makes interaction easy.
  • Is easy for audience to share amongst selves.
  • “Letters To The Editor” are a comment box and a click away. Enables two-way conversation between author and audience.

Recognizing these digital-specific extras is only the first step — use them!

Digital Style

The rule of thumb is no matter the platform or subject matter, digital content is generally shorter than print. People move through web content quicker than they do print, and are more likely to pass up your piece if it doesn’t immediately pull them in. While actually setting down your print publication and locating another one of interest may take some time, the switch from one webpage to the next is a click away. The ability to summarize your work accurately and succinctly is crucial when writing for the web. These descriptions are often what draw your audience in. Don’t, however, let the quality of your content or your publication’s “personal flair” fade away in the process of web styling.

Consider Combining

Remember that print and digital media need not be mutually exclusive. Depending on the terms of your shift in media, there are many ways to have the two types permanently reference back to one another, or temporarily to carry out the transition more effectively.

  • Call your audience to action with a, well, call to action! A CTA is a reference in print media that directs audiences to additional information online. The information you include online is completely up to you. You can include an article add-on, or a promise of some sort of online engagement.
  • While the popularity of QR codes has come, gone and come again they do create a real tie between print and digital media. If you choose to employ QR codes remember what trouble your audience is going to to interact with your publication and make it worthwhile! QR codes should always add value and not waste time.

Amanda O’Donnell writes for Fahrenheit Marketing, an online marketing company based in Austin, TX. Amanda is still deciding if she wants to pursue a career in digital media or print media.

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