From my own experience with this issue and having regard to recent research I would proceed with this course of action with caution.
There was some research released only two weeks ago by the Morgan Institute that found 53.8% of Australians over the age of 14 prefer to read a hardcopy magazine (this increased 1.8% from the year before).
In my experience too there are several important advantages that come with maintaining a hardcopy publication (and there is much industry research to support this) e.g. that hardcopy:
1. Serves as a VIP brand touchpoint- Greater impact on the reader by engaging touch/feel – impacts then favourably on reader affinity
2. Greater comprehension and recall by readers of content
3. People spend longer reading hardcopy as compared to online (almost 50% longer)
4. Increases brain stimulation and therefore willingness to respond/be compelled to answer a call to action
There is a great recent article by Executive Media worth reading on this too at https://executivemedia.com.au/about/why-print-media/.
Lastly before proceeding any further, I would recommend going to your readers and find out what they would prefer via some survey/focus group research. In the past where I’ve been ‘obliged’ to make a decision like this by senior mgt, I’ve always made the transition by giving readers the ability to opt in/out of hardcopy to at least give them a choice and soften the blow.
Happy to chat further anytime offline on this as I’ve had a lot of experience with producing magazines in educction.
Best regards – Alastair Lee – AlumGrow Consultancy.