A couple of weeks ago, I was on a panel that was asked the question, “Is Print Dead?”. It is a leading question, filled with presumption. The answer is certainly an emphatic “no” for the multi-family space. Print revenues remain solid. Print lead production remains solid. Online traffic from print is meaningful and important and efficient (cost effective). But I saw some facts today that showed me that integrated media is stealing share from internet only players.
I took a look at ComScore data for the past year. This time last year, ComScore showed about 69% of all unique visitors going to the online only players of Rent.com, MyNewPlace.com and Apartments.com, with 31% going to integrated media players ForRent.com, ApartmentGuide.com and ApartmentFinder.com. Over the course of the past year, the shift has been continuous and somewhat dramatic. Today the mix is 61%:39% with integrated media cutting the gap significantly. Here is the chart
The details of where share went are also interesting. In the chart below, the integrated media players on on the bottom and the online only players on the top. Apartment Finder and Apartment Guide seem to be taking share from everyone else.
While we have done a ton of work with online marketing, SEO and partners – direct traffic (people typing in http://www.apartmentfinder.com) continues to grow as does brand natural search (people typing Apartment Finder into Google). Both of these are traffic sources that have everything to do with print.
So, while the question to the panel was “Is Print Dead”, the data seems to indicate that integrated marketing is gaining ground.