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Print media = more space to play
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05 . 11 . 18

Culture Trip joins the print love-in

Words by: Print Power
Online travel mag Culture Trip is the latest digital brand to try print, buoyed by promises of user engagement and brand loyalty
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Millennial-focused, social media-first travel site, Culture Trip, has finally broken from the confines of digital, hoping that a glossy print mag will help foster an “emotional connection” with its readers.

In doing so, it becomes the latest in a long line of digital brands to join the analogue revolution. And the latest to recognise that, if you want to make friends and create meaningful content in “this fast-paced digital world… a tangible product can evoke a sense of being in the moment that digital does not always have,” says Culture Trip’s publishing director Natalie Smith. 

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Examples of old-school publishers patching together an online presence are 10 a penny – that is if they haven’t ditched print altogether. But increasingly, we’re seeing digital brands experiment with more traditional media.

The likes of Airbnb and Facebook now have print magazines of their own. And there’s even a whiff that Amazon could join in time for Christmas (more on that later in the year, maybe).

Smith offers her perspective: “We see it very much as a natural step to give our audience a tangible version. Something that is more tactile, that creates even more of an emotional connection. The power of storytelling comes in many forms, yet there’s something special about being able to hold and feel what you’re reading.”

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Visitors to the site – which has more than 18 million unique monthly users and seven million followers on social – pore over stories on everything from Texan BBQs to Ghanaian slave castles. But the emphasis on storytelling, which has been a constant since Dr Kris Naudts called time on his career as a psychiatrist and founded the site in 2011, has only very limited mileage online.

“People invest a bit more time into reading a magazine, allowing themselves to get lost in the stories,” says Smith. “Yet the two (print and digital) go hand in hand. Print might spark the initial inspiration; then using our digital platforms we help our audience further explore the world and take them from the inspiration stage, all the way through to planning and booking a trip.”

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This idea that print media sparks inspiration and drives brand awareness has really caught on in recent times. And with it, misconceptions, for example that younger audiences aren’t receptive to print, are shattering before our very eyes. 

“It’s a complete myth that millennials don’t do print,” says Smith. “No matter what age, people still love to pick up and read something compelling and engaging offline. Magazines evoke a sense of being able to log off and really engage with the stories being told, with a product that is timeless.”

Intrigued? The first issue of Culture Trip Magazine is available now.