Print media benefiting fromdigital migration: Fadi Doidri



Riyadh: Arab News

Published — Wednesday 30 May 2012

Last update 30 May 2012 8:23 pm

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

Fadi Assad Doidri, a senior industry professional with over ten years' experience in Saudi Arabia, and managing director of Dakkin Advertising & Design Consultancy, believes the move to digital platforms is crucial for the public and private sectors because of the benefits of reduced costs, more effective marketing and increasing environmental concerns over the production and use of paper.
Doidri recently opened an office in California's Silicon Valley, USA, driven in part by "the limited suitable technical human resources" in the Middle East.
"Now in California, I can fully appreciate the value of tools of interactivity. We can create amazing social media campaigns, smart phone and tablet apps, Content Management System (CMS) websites, and other digital integrated services and campaigns. The vital benefit of CMS is in 'dynamic content' which enables website content to be continuously updated and managed, especially by clients themselves. One example of CMS platforms is Drupal, which is 'open source.' This is used by some of the biggest sites on the web, such as The Economist and The White House..."
Doidri said that while some media buyers preferred to promote traditional marketing vehicles, "research has revealed that online impressions are by far the most cost-effective."
He said migration to online news has been slow in the Middle East because the Arab public still prefers reading newspapers. "However, some of the large newspaper groups are gearing up for digital migration, and most newspapers have some online footprint. Generally, this still requires development, and a shift in people's habits and perceptions.
Large companies with social responsibility budgets could run public awareness campaigns as one solution. At the same time, strategies need to be devised to generate financial returns for newspapers' quality online content.
All of this is set against a backdrop of diminishing advertising revenues for print, over the past five years; in terms of its proportional share of total advertising spend. This trend is set to continue, though magazines in general may have fared better given their pan-Arab scope and, in many cases, their appeal to the huge female market."
Doidri believes digital mediums have an added benefit. "In many parts of the world, there has long been a concern for the environment regarding the huge volume of printed materials being produced, much of which ends up in landfills."
On the digital future, regarding advertising and media, Doidri said: "Greater investment is required to develop our own digital space. We also have to be prepared for the digital platform being the future advertising growth driver, hand-in-hand with the increasing technology adoption levels.
However, much still has to be done to rationalize the way digital media campaigns can be purchased efficiently without having to go to multiple suppliers. For instance, through a single source you could arrange a national media campaign that covers all 26 of Saudi Arabia's airports.
But, when organizing a digital campaign, you would currently have to purchase through more than one, and perhaps multiple, sources."
Doidri said there was an increasing trend by the Saudi government and the corporate world toward e-commerce transactions and digital marketing, but this has been limited. "Imagine the time-savings through using e-transactions for obtaining visas, as only one example. On a personal level, when I am in the United States and many other countries, I can purchase even my basic needs online, and have them conveniently delivered to my home."
On the issue of Arabic websites and Arabic content on the Internet, Doidri said he was part of the King Abdullah Initiative for Arabic Content and Wiki Arabi, which translated the most important science and technology themed articles of Wikipedia. The initiative managed to increase Arabic digital Internet content fourfold, from 0.3 percent to 1.2 percent, according to Google estimates. "This was a great achievement in beginning to make Arabic Internet content more closely reflect the proportion of Arabic speaking people among the global population."
Doidri said that human resources and recruitment has also been transformed by the digital world, citing LinkedIn and its integration with other mediums such as Facebook and Twitter. He is currently recruiting using these websites.
Doidri said he also hoped that the Arab world would develop and own its own relevant social media websites, to be used for good causes.

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

JEDDAH: The Saudi Traffic Department has denied that it is introducing new license plates for cars.It said hackers posted pictures of the supposedly new license plates on its Twitter account on Sunday. The department said the news, which went viral,...
JEDDAH: The Al-Haramain Train project is described as the largest public transportation project in the Middle East. This vital and strategic project is one of the implementation schemes of the mass expansion of the Saudi railway across the country.Th...
JEDDAH: The number of marriages between expatriates and Saudis has dropped 84 percent to 1,928 since the start of this Islamic year that began on Oct. 24, compared to the same period the previous year.The Ministry of Justice said that there were 12,0...
JEDDAH: Unofficial marriage is a refuge for a divorced mother to lead a married life while keeping her children in her custody but without the knowledge of the former husband who could demand the custody of the children if he learned about the ex-wif...
JEDDAH: Makkah’s health department has set up a committee to verify the sick leave certificates of employees.The department stated it would apply government regulations on sick leave, which includes people providing the address of the facilities wher...
RIYADH: The directorate of roads and transport has registered 20 cases of violations worth SR24,500 in Al-Qassim, where the transport ministry continued its surveillance drive against the companies in the transport business.According to the directora...
RIYADH: The implementation of an integrated health plan to combat MERS has resulted in a sharp drop in cases, with only one out of 736 samples testing positive for the contagion in the Kingdom in the last six days. Health Ministry spokesman Dr. Khal...
RIYADH: Muslims must cut traditionally high electricity use during Ramadan in line with the principles of austerity and self-control they are supposed to adopt in this month, economists say.Economist Al-Sadeq Idris said energy use increases during Ra...
JEDDAH: The Ministry of Commerce and Industry will begin next Tuesday to check whether companies are complying with new laws requiring them to place proper price labels on all their products.It is mandatory for companies to stop using phrases such as...
RIYADH: Minister of Islamic Affairs Saleh Al-Asheikh chaired the first meeting with Yemeni scholars to exchange ideas on how to strengthen their role in restoring peace in their country.The first Saudi-Yemen scholars meeting, dubbed the “outreach sch...
RIYADH: To cope with the growing number of applicants (boys and girls) at technical colleges that reached 126,023 last year, a state-run organization launched an online unified portal to ease the enrolment procedures.According to the Technical and V...
RIYADH: A senior government official from Dhaka, who visited Riyadh last week, has sorted out technical issues to expedite issuing 1.5 million machine readable passports (MRP) to Bangladeshi expatriates in the Kingdom. Information and Communication T...
JEDDAH: Jeddah municipality is keen to provide health and food security to residents and visitors of the city, and they are continually conducting inspections of food stores, restaurants, markets and food storage facilities to avoid any violations by...
JEDDAH: Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman has been awarded a top international prize for his contribution to the propagation of the Qur’an.He was named the “Islamic Personality of the Year” by the Holy Qur’an International Memorization Or...
JEDDAH: Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, second deputy premier, minister of defense and chairman of the Economic Affairs and Development Council, held a meeting in Jeddah on Monday with Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed, deputy national security advis...

Stay Connected

Facebook