Print advertising is still important to news media companies, said Agnello Dias, COO and co-founder of Taproot Dentsu India Communication.

Speaking at INMA’s South Asia News Media Conference in New Delhi, Dias said, “Print is the first form of formal education a child has.”

“When you’re a kid and you first see words written on a page or on a slate, that’s the first impression you have in any kind of formalised learning system.”

The impact a broadsheet newspaper still has on people can’t come across the same way in digital, he said. “In digital you see things in parts and then you see the whole; whereas in print you see the whole, and then you get down into actually seeing the parts of it.”

Because of this, print advertising is still very important for newspapers, he said: “It’s both information, education, and entertainment.”

Where does he see print media versus digital media in five years?

“I think digital will probably grow — but I don’t think it will grow at the cost of print. I think there is a certain tactile feeling about print that is never going to go away. I think there is a certain thing print brings to the table that allows it to continue to survive, and prosper.”

Dias compared it to music: While CDs and digital downloads have overtaken the music industry, they still don’t replace the feeling that you get when hearing and seeing live music performed.

“Similarly, I think print will continue to hold its own and probably even grow a bit, because digital may actually get people to read a bit more.”