Some parts of the mainstream media seem to have finally caught onto how much people and retailers still like paper catalogs.
According to CNBC, people like catalogs because they can look at them anytime anywhere and don’t have to be constrained by going online all the time.
Well, yeah. What have catalogers been saying for years?
CNBC also argues for the general audience that paper catalogs help brick and mortar retailers build their brands. Some of them are even expanding their catalogs to the likes of Facebook to reach younger prospects.
In short it seems you just can’t kill the catalog.
Granted this story doesn’t take into account what everybody in this industry knows: catalogs are increasingly taking orders online and are relying much less on the U.S. Postal Service. But catalogers are emphatic about how much they still need the USPS to sustain their businesses even if they are mailing less than they used to.
In fact, catalogers really want the USPS to drastically cut its costs so the postal service will stay around for a while.
Of course, postal cutbacks are still being debated in Congress and there’s a high likelihood they won’t be addressed before the election in November
Meanwhile, the USPS continues to hemorrhage money and stands a chance of going into default if Congress does not act quickly.
Blogger Josie Leavitt writing in Publishers Weekly lamented what she saw as the decline of the paper catalog.
She cited how much electronic catalogs save trees and improve efficiency but saw the inevitability of the online catalog taking over at least in some parts of the book publishing business.
Also, she expressed melancholy over at least one paper catalog’s decline and noted that paper catalogs hearken back to an earlier era.
Not so fast Josie.
More than 12.5 billion catalogs were reportedly mailed out to U.S. homes last year.