Magazine Renaissance Via Digital Media

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Communication and content delivery has changed irrevocably in a short space of time, everything from the way we view and digest content to how we connect and communicate with each other has been transformed beyond recognition. Digital communication has ripped up the very foundations of what we once took for granted as the norm and replaced it with a multitude of methods and means with which we literally all can avail of in one way or another.

Anything that involves huge changes in our communication and content ingestion habits was always going to affect some industries more than others; for every yin there exists a yang. The print industry was one such industry to feel the pinch considerably but thankfully we are seeing a renaissance of the traditional magazine with some crucial and vital pivots in approach to this the most traditional of mediums, the reason for this? The amalgamation of quality content with digital media.

In adversity arises creativity

The optimal words here are quality and amalgamation. As the saying goes, in the face of adversity comes creativity! This phrase could have been coined solely for the combination of print and digital industry, initially digital media and the methods it employed were viewed in some quarters as a threat to the print industry, a shortsighted view but a view nonetheless that at one point was widely held in many sectors.

In previous blogs we covered how President and CEO of Yahoo Marissa Mayer has pioneered the development of publications such as Yahoo Food and Yahoo Tech, similarly Pierre Omidyar has backed media company First Look in their launch of ‘The Intercept’. What these publications have in common is that they are embracing modern technology but crucially sprinkling them with absolute quality content normally associated with print publications, a fact supported by the standard of the contributors to said digital magazines.

In Yahoo’s case, providers of content within their magazines of the standing of the New York Times’ David Pogue, Bon Appétit’s Julie Bainbridge and Joe Zee from Elle signaled a serious nod towards this necessity. Not to be outdone The Intercept has also assembled an all-star cast of contributors led by award-winning journalists Glenn Greenwald, Laura Poitras, & Jeremy Scahill.

Quality beats quantity every time, and it shows

The point I am making here is that these media companies know that no matter whether content is on a piece of paper, a tablet or smartphone, the one thing that will set a magazine apart, and that’s what they are, magazines, is quality, and lots of it. Consumers are a canny bunch; they will soon smell out whether the magazines, digital or otherwise, are backed up by hard facts and serious journalism. The consumer wants, and will actively seek, those who harbor such qualities and possess valued knowledge on the particular fields of expertise they wish to learn from.

This approach to the magazine sector by the digital community not only signals a serious intent on their part of providing premium quality products, but will also attract the further consumer engagement and vitally will open up much needed and welcome avenues of revenue. It stands to reason, today’s consumer is online, the statistics are there for all to see, it is a connected planet on which we reside, this is without rebuke, more often than not the first thing we will reach for in the quest for information is our smartphone or tablet such is their standing and importance within our day to day lives.

Premium publications, premium advertising

The providence of these premium quality digital publications, publications which utilize the very real and advantageous benefits of rich media, opens up the door not only for the consumer to openly invest in their products but crucially also the advertiser who up until now have been slightly hesitant to become as heavily involved financially speaking, as they would have been with print in the past. This aspect is especially apt as ad spending on mobile hasn’t kept up with the amount of time people spend on the devices.

This poses the question why? Premium quality video content has proven that these advertising aims can be achieved by raising the bar in terms of the quality itself, why then should digital magazines be any different? This latest turn in events is set to answer the question. “The term magazine describes the value advertisers are getting,” said Joyce Bautista Ferrari, executive editorial director at Say Media, “They’re getting storytelling, something that has a personality.”

The benefits of digital magazines are substantial, it is a topic we have covered in these blogs many times before but this welcome focus on quality, personality and storytelling could be the catalyst which allows both industries of print and digital to seamlessly conjoin. Increased readership and crucially, increased revenue through premium advertising slots which embrace all the qualities that rich media within digital magazines possess could be just the renaissance the magazine industry has been waiting for all this time.



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