Is the future of print, retail?

Sunday, April 16, 2017

From Print to Digital to Print | Conde Nast at Hanover Square 

Digital will never last they said. You will always need print they said.

So, the future of the traditional newsagent seemed safe, until now maybe.

When Steve Jobs launched the iPad in 2010, it heralded a new time for the world publications.

A few jumped straight in with their own apps, newspapers mainly, with magazines to follow, Conde Nast ahead of the game.

These international giants invested cautiously in this new world, digital was inevitable, but, how was that to look? More importantly, how might that effect the balance sheet. Consumers expected to pay less for something which in reality, they couldn’t put their hands on, something they didn’t own. One was paying for a viewing license.

There were and are many who understandably purchase print magazines- I am one of them. That magazine scent, the crisp feel of the papers and of course, the perfume samples- none of this translates digitally.

So, the emergence of digital twinned with the loyal print readers, left publishers in a sort of ‘waiting line’

Meanwhile, digital began to be taken more seriously, retail brands saw a shift in their consumer habits- online shopping, click & collect

A space was born, concept stores (basically, curated mini department stores) – a lifestyle pit-stop, where guess what, you could even sit back and enjoy the ‘new to arrive’ artisan coffee. Can you see where I am going with this?

Three years prior to the iPad, 2007, Monocle launched, in 2013, Monocle opened The Monocle Cafe on lesser known then, Chiltern Street.

The Monocle Cafe – where one can visit and subscribe to title, purchase branded merchandise and enjoy one of those coffees.

So, you see, Conde Nast’s conversion of the former HSBC site (see last year”s post about that) – into a beautiful magazine store, should come as no surprise.

The store acts as a point of sale, a point of subscription, a home of reader events and itself firmly on the shopping avenues.

Is this a burgeoning retail trend? Only time will tell.

 Image: © Mayfair Curated 2013-2017

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