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Print Media versus Digital Dissertation


The rapidly growing business world that technology seems to renovate each subsequent day is experiencing changes in business trends, especially in the marketing where consumer preferences have transformed accordingly (Jones, Pentecost, & Requena 2005).

Among others, the global graphic industry seems to experience unprecedented changes since the emergence of modern computer and phone technologies that appear to influence information sharing among people (Hsiung 2011; Magee 2012).

As the trend towards consumption of graphic printed material such as brochures, birthday cards, letterheads, banners, and pocket folders has changed, the expectations of consumers regarding print media have also changed dramatically.

As Carreiro (2010) discovers, a continuum of studies have come strongly to reveal and demonstrate the rapid deterioration of printed media and the transformation towards modern communication and information sharing technologies.

Using questionnaires as research instruments that the researchers administered to about 48 participants, including university students, businesspersons, and working-class individuals, the research noted significant differences between printed media and computer-displayed information (Jones, Pentecost & Requena 2005).

More importantly is the connection of print media to the influence of advertisements and the manner in which consumers respond to printed advertisement information to the computer screen information (Berkhout & Hertin 2004). The study discovered that print media have greater influence on the memory recall of consumers than the computer-displayed advertisements (Jones, Pentecost, & Requena 2005).

The significance of making a print media appear attractive and appealing to consumers arises as the influence of printed advertisements on the memory recalls of individuals prove more than in the computer information.

Before getting any further, it is important to understand the meaning of a graphic industry and its commercial role. According to Berte and De Bens (2004), the graphic industry entails the business of providing commercial printing services, graphic designing, direct mail services, website designing services, and the video production services that aim to share information using different platforms.

Companies use different forms of advertising techniques most of which run through the mentioned graphic industry communication platforms that come in two major categories, namely the printed media and the computerised non-print media (Bird 2009).

The shift from print media to nonpoint media has intensified and consumers have their own diverse opinions about these two media Kolyesnikova, Dodd and Callison (2014) conducted a study to investigate the manner in which consumers respond to direct mail messages and the influence of gratitude and obligation of individual consumers in this form of information exchange platform.

Through using the technique of integrating emotional content into the direct mail messages, Kolyesnikova, Dodd and Callison (2014), managed to collect substantial information to depict the influence of digital media in the marketing realm. They used two terms: gratitude, which means thanksgiving messages to the personnel for the services received and obligation, which connoted the willingness of the buyer to make a purchase.

Over 120 participants exposed to direct emails and postcards developed from a hypothetical winery participated in the study.

According to Kolyesnikova, Dodd and Callison (2014, p. 337), “gratitude exerts a more positive influence than obligation does and that communicating through gratitude, and even neutral, messages were found to be more persuasive than those messages conveying obligation.” This means that different communication techniques also matter in digital media.

Print versus Digital

In the graphic industry that deals with the production and dissemination of information in a commercialized manner, there are two forms of communication media, which include print media and the digital media (Carreiro 2010). Print media include the use of paper or canvas-written material such as brochures, newspapers, magazines, banners, pamphlets and newsletters to deliver information to consumers.

According to Dijkstra, Buijtels, and Raaij (2005), digital media is the use of digital devices such as networked computers, internet enabled phones and tablets that support direct mail messages, websites, or video production, and the use of televisions and radio stations that support video and audio content respectively.

Marketers argue that little known is that the manner in which the two mediums of commercial communication deliver their advertising information is critical to consumers of products or services (Foasberg 2011; Lee 2011; Suh 2004).

As Carreiro (2010) discovered while following developing research, especially in print media, the manner in which media communicates in the commercial platform, especially through advertising techniques differ distinctively.

Research reveals that most people prefer electronic sources that represent the digital media than the print sources that represent the traditional information sharing tools (Liu 2006). However, preferences on the two communication mediums differ from customer to customer, especially on issues regarding advertisement information.

Dreze (2003) conducted a survey that investigated online surfers and their perceptions on website advertisements. The researcher revealed that clicks on the banner ads placed on websites are relatively low because the attention of surfers on online banners is ineffective (Dreze 2003).

This may act to portray the unique position that print media takes in advertising and product marketing as it becomes crucial in placing big image adverts on the easily turned pages.

Each media is unique in nature and according to research on media adoption, Zhang and Kuvda (2013) postulate that setting functional comparison between the two mediums of commercial communication is seemingly impossible, as none seems to replace the unique function of the other.

As media transform towards electronic exchange of information that consumers find it easy to access data through electronic gadgets, the print media is experiencing pressure to alter their services (Nasir 2012). Customers of printing media have developed a new urge that has spurred innovation in the print media technology where print media value chain seems to enhance (Aase 2011).

The emerging software for printing and graphic design tools have resulted in innovation such as development of temperature-sensitive paper, intelligent paper, touch-surface printing devices and other digital printing equipment that satisfy the efficiency urge among consumers (Rothmann & Koch 2014).

From the commercial advertising perspective, the print media also continue to associate with producing paper reports that attract direct consumers to companies (Graham & Greenhill 2012). In a study that examined the influence of vertical integration in printing media in Sweden, Mejtoft (2010) discovered that paper reports essentially give companies opportunities to meet with direct consumers.

Models for measuring customer satisfaction

With the deteriorating and the depreciating value of the print media, that places the graphic industry on a possible verge of collapse and extinction, integrating business models that spur a new wave of advancement is critical (Gibson & Gib 2011).

The electronic media is overriding the print media on the simple basis of customer satisfaction since most consumers tend to remain attracted to new media technologies that help them easily access and share information efficiently (Geyskens, Gielens, & Dekimpe 2002).

Assessing the satisfaction of consumers and understanding the contracts of satisfaction, would probably revamp the collapsing print media industry that has faced market competition from the dynamic digital media (Kaplan, Murray, & Hunderson 2003).

This literature review investigates four important business marketing and production models that focus on explaining customer satisfaction and the possible elements that influence customer satisfaction. The index model of customer satisfaction, the Kano business model of consumer contentment, the model of Quality Function Deployment (QFD) and the Servqual management models are important in this review.

Index Model

In the marketing realm, customer satisfaction continues to be arguably the overriding topic that has put marketers into strategic planning. According to Turkyilmaz and Ozkan (2007, p. 672), “a key motivation for the growing emphasis on customer satisfaction is that higher customer satisfaction can lead to a stronger competitive position resulting in a higher market share and profit.”

The index model of business measures the risks associated with a business stock against the expected returns (Johnson et al. 2001). The index model is a customer satisfaction model that hinges on the notion that an upward trend in customer satisfaction entails a decrease in customer complaints and a significant increase customer loyalty (Meena & Sarmah, 2012).

Customer loyalty plays a significant role in assessing customer satisfaction since it is normally a great indication and determinant of positive reputation increased sales. The index model being an important tool in assessing the behaviour of stocks and consumer expectations companies increases their market competence.

Kano Model

The Kano model of business and marketing contains the constructs of supplies and customer satisfaction as important model aspects (Wang 2014). The Kano model of consumer satisfaction does not hinge on a one-dimensional view where the product reputation enhances consumer satisfaction (Ghorbani, Arabzad & Shanin 2013).

The Kano business model of consumer satisfaction considers the two-dimensional view that determines consumer satisfaction. According to Wang and Ji (2010), the two dimensions of determining consumer satisfaction include the object-oriented aspect that entails the functionality of the product and the subjective aspect that entails satisfaction perception.

The general perception about the Kano model of business satisfaction is that certain attributes of a product or services of a business have an influence on the customer satisfaction.

QFD Model

The Quality Function Deployment (QFD) is another customer satisfaction model that concentrates on transforming the qualitative demands of consumers into quantifiable values that are necessary in production systems (Reap, Roman, Duncan, & Bras 2008).

QFD is a business strategic planning technique that aims at assisting companies to transform their existing and new services or products from the panorama of market segments, technology advancement and the company view of business.

According to Cheng, Hu and Cheng (2013), the basic concept of QFD is to covert the Voices of customers into a quality function of the products through analysis, hence achieving customer satisfaction (p. 263).

The business model further assists companies to transform and renovate the needs of customers through focusing on their production and engineering techniques and appropriate test methods that examine the efficiency of products or services (Shyu, Chan, & Ko 2013).

With this assumption, the model helps to focus on customer needs which sounds as an appropriate method to help companies to establish means of enhancing production techniques or improving service delivery to consumers.


Another significant model that the graphic industry should understand and try to implement to meet the rising customer demands is the Servqual business management tool (El-Bassiouni et al. 2012). The Servqual strategy tool is a customer satisfaction model that is critical in the measure of measurement of service or product quality and often used in the marketing realm (Akdag et al. 2013).

In a research that used Servqual questionnaire and the airline industry, Marinkovic et al. (2013) tested five Servqual variables; tangibility, empathy, assurance, reliability and responsiveness and their impact on satisfaction concerning online travel booking services.

The research outcomes revealed that responsiveness, empathy, tangibility and reliability are important precursors that trigger consumer satisfaction. In another significant study, Al-Borie and Damanhouri (2013) the five aspects of Servqual variables have an impact on customer satisfaction.

Relationship Marketing

The marketing technique matters in improving a collapsing industry such as the graphic industry. According to Madhavaram and Granot (2014), a technique of relationship marketing is significant as it assists firms to understand commercial relationships and construct relationship portfolio.

The relationship marketing has its main objective in delivering extra value to consumers and building long-term relationships of mutual beneficence with consumers (Raggio, Walz, Godbole, & Folse 2014).

As Richards and Jones (2008) note, the main characteristics of relationship marketing include companies focusing on maintaining consumers, the companies remaining oriented to benefits, maintaining long lasting relationships with consumers, enhancing consumer involvement, direct contact with consumers and total quality management.

Khan (2014) states that the main perception of relationship marketing is that through maintaining long-term relationships with corporate members such as consumers, suppliers and shareholders, firms would have good performances.

Customer Relationship Management

A business can barely operate on its own, without the accrued involvement of consumers who form the client group that is very essential in firm growth (Upamannyu & Bakhar 2014). According to Amin, Isa and Fontaine (2013), the only hope for the graphic industry under the prevailing technology pressure is to ensure constant maintenance of customer relationships.

Corporate performance relies on the effective relationship between companies and consumers where mutual beneficence becomes a crucial factor in the achievement of organisational goals (Ghafoor et al. 2012; Tao 2014).

Research reveals that collecting information regarding customer relationship enables the managers to maintain a positive relationship with consumers, which eventually enable companies to focus on the factors that most affect consumers.

Brand Image and Loyalty

The company reputation begins with the brand reputation set by the marketing team within the company (Stein, Smith, & Lancion 2013). The reputation of a company or product is very imperative in determining the relationship between firms and employees where customer loyalty plays a critical role (Wang 2012).

According to Tu, Wang, and Chang (2012, p. 24), “corporate brand is vital because positive corporate brands help companies achieving higher performance.”

The printing and graphic industry in general continues to face digital competition and the only possible way of enhancing customer satisfaction is through ensuring a constant positive connection between the consumers and the company. According to Onyancha (2013), whether it is a product industry or service industry, the reputation of a brand is crucial.

Chapter Summary

The graphic industry forms a crucial part of the industrial world and it has been a big employer as well. The increasing technological adoption that has resulted to preference on digital media rather than the printed media seems to place the page content into extinction.

Although each of the communication media seems to have its unique feature that makes it competent commercially, the need to employ different business management models and marketing strategies is increasing. The literature reviewed portrays that people are focusing on digital media, although print media contain unique features that make it still essential in the advertising paradigm.


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