Internal newspapers and magazines are two ways companies have historically tried to stay in touch with their employees. In an analog world, they worked well as a means of distributing important company news and information. But as technology has improved, many companies are beginning to notice their limitations. In fact, here are three main reasons it is time to replace your internal newspaper.
1. Too Costly
Internal newspapers and magazines are costly, and not just financially. It takes an incredible amount of time and effort to put together a great company newspaper. Some companies have an entire department dedicated specifically to their internal magazine or newspaper, including an editorial board and staff. That’s a lot of money and time being spent on something with a diminishing return for your business.
Another factor is the impact on the environment if your company prints their magazine or newspaper. The hard truth is that very few employees are reading anything on paper these days, let alone an internal company paper. This means your newspaper wasn’t just expensive, it was a waste of time, money, and paper.
2. Printed Content Becomes Outdated and Irrelevant Quickly
We live in a 24-hour news cycle. People expect updates and information immediately, not in days, weeks, or months. By the time your internal newspaper or magazine makes it to your employees (especially if you are using a traditional print format), all the news is old news. And no one wants to read old news!
In today’s digital, attention economy, effective news updates are regularly released or immediate, utilizing feeds that can be checked throughout the day. The era of catching up on the last month of company news via a printed paper is no longer. Today employees expect to be able to check their phones throughout the day to stay up to date on all your company news.
3. Less PR more Content
Another internal content problem is the tendency to only include good news in internal newspapers and magazines. While employees do want to hear good things about the company, they also want to hear the truth. It can’t be good all the time, and too often internal magazines and newspapers try to spin news in management’s favor.
It may not actually be propaganda, but many internal magazines and newspapers tend to read like it. Partially because of the “good news only” problem, but also because most formal magazines and newspapers are written from the perspective of upper management. While the information being shared may be useful (if outdated), employees will resist it because it doesn’t feel authentic.
Instead of spending time and energy on outdated content that employees don’t trust, find a better way. For example, mobile communication platforms can accomplish the goals of your internal magazine in ways your magazine couldn’t dream of. It’s more cost effective, content is fresh and constantly updated, and everyone can be involved.