Paper company Domtar is running a 1960s-style ad in this week’s Newsweek, which has a retro theme to promote the new season of “Mad Men.” The Domtar ad has a simple message that paper can help people read faster and retain more information.
“We’ve seen studies that show whether you’re an executive or a millennial, people prefer to read on paper, and it’s faster to read on paper,” said Lewis Fix, Domtar’s Vice-President of Sustainable Business and Brand Management. “Whether you are learning or sharing important information, there are good reasons to make sure people still read the material on paper.”
The Domtar ad – part of its award-winning PAPERbecause campaign – will run in Newsweek’s March 19 issue. It shows a boy dressed as a superhero and reading a comic book, while his mother proudly watches. The message: while entertainment options may have changed, people still enjoy reading on paper.
“A lot has changed since the 1960s, but we wanted to use this retro theme to make a serious point,” Fix said. “There are several studies that prove there’s a value in reading on paper that helps people learn and communicate.” Fix highlighted four studies, in particular:
A 2011 survey of “millennials” (people born after 1985) showed that 65 percent think it’s easier to view or read something on paper. About the same percentage of senior executives agree, according to a 2007 study. It showed that 59 percent trust printed material more than online sources, and that 60 percent prefer printed information when they need to do an in-depth analysis.
A 2009 study revealed that 64 percent of workers prefer ink on paper rather than a screen when it comes to reading. The rate was even higher (70 percent) among employees of technology companies.
Further research, conducted at Wayne State University, found that reading on paper is actually 10 to 30 percent faster than reading online, partly because it is easier to track where you are on the page.