Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Monday, December 15, 2008
Unfortunately, you only have to read the last line - "I challenge the digital magazine industry to from an association and do the research. I’d love to help do it." to grasp that the whole piece is really about everyone forming a committee to convince advertisers and readers alike that they are serious.
With respect, Josh, the LAST thing we need is another committee. What we need is some blazingly successful products....
Friday, November 21, 2008
Digital magazine distributor Zinio has announced the launch of Inside, a search function that enables publishers and users to search content within digital magazine products.
“If you or your company are covered in a magazine and you want to share it, who wants to send a link to a site when you can send the actual layout,” says Zinio,“No one else does this.”
The service—which is free to users and to publishers who currently have an account with Zinio—lets users send digital “replicas” of magazine pages over e-mail and post articles to Web sites and blogs and social networking sites like Facebook and Digg. In addition to the search functionality, Zinio Inside can also suggest additional editorial content and offer purchasing options for either a single issue or a 12-month subscription.
Zinio Inside will launch with more than 1,000 magazine titles in the company’s digital library, Zinio says.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Friday, November 07, 2008
The Kindle has been both praised and criticized for its text-heavy, black-and-white display. Unlike the often flashy, oversized color presentation normally associated with digital magazines, Nxtbook intends to offer the magazines in text form.
Nxtbook also says that Kindle support will be offered at no additional cost to customers of Nxtbook Media's Liberty program. A number of magazine publishers have already packaged their content for the Kindle. Last month, Newsweek released a collection of election coverage as an e-book series for the Kindle.
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Its official - digital magazines DO work.
Look at the ABC's posted by the Dennis portfolio - iGizmo, Monkey and iMotor.
- Monkey - recorded 283,541 average readers per issue, marking its fourth successive ABCe rise and its best result since launching in 2006.
- iGizmo - iGizmo attracted 101,785 average readers per issue.
- iMotor - registered a circulation of 108,622.
Dennis claims that advertising responsiveness has been very high with the digital titles, with a recent car manufacturer promotion in iMotor delivering over 200 test drives and 400 brochure requests from a single insertion.
Bruce Sandell, head of new product development at Dennis, said: "We now have over 1.4m readers [per month] opening, engaging with and enjoying our digital magazines.
"Our readers are also spending over half an hour immersed in each issue which makes the environment a very different proposition to websites, where the audience is far more likely to dip in and out.
"This audits prove that the digital magazine sector is a viable, growing and successful business model."
Its ditching print after 100 years and had a circulation as high as 220,000 in the 1970s, but now sells around 52,000 copies each day, while the website attracts 1.5m visitors a month.
It is forecast to lose $18.9m in the year ending April 30. The switch to web-only publication is projected to help cut this loss to $10.5m by 2013.
It is a development that will be watched closely by other newspaper publishers already struggling to maintain circulation levels and now facing the added threat of a significant fall in advertising revenue in 2009.
However, because the Monitor is run as a non-profit business, and is subsidised, its experience is somewhat different to most newspapers.
The end of the Christian Science Monitor as a daily newspaper comes at a tough time for the US newpaper industry as hundreds lose their jobs across the country.
Yesterday, Tribune Co's Los Angeles Times announced it was to cut 10% of its editorial staff, laying-off 75 employees as part of a 200-person reduction that began last week.
The New York Times cut jobs earlier this year and USA Today's owner, Gannett, is also cutting more jobs having announced 120 were to go in August.
The Star-Ledger, the biggest newspaper in New Jersey, said last week it was to make about 40% of its newsroom staff redundant with around 150 jobs going.
Monday, October 27, 2008
It is is making all titles available as e-books every month, with the exception of its special releases, centenary products and summer sale books.
Monday, October 20, 2008
Cimarron Buser, SVP, marketing and business development at Texterity, added that "the increased use of laptops in a paperless world" has also helped spur on the increase of digital.
Despite the increase, digital still accounts for a small percentage of the overall circulation mix. On average, electronic editions made up 13 percent of total circulation for all BPA members. In fact, of the top 20 magazines in terms of digital circulation tracked by BPA, just one-Renewable Energy Focus-claims a majority of its circulation digital-only.
Oracle claimed a digital distribution of 146,545-a 19 percent increase-during the first half of the year, topping all BPA titles in digital circulation. Electronic editions now comprise almost 30 percent of Oracle's total subscriber base.
Saturday, October 11, 2008
I've evangelised about this a lot on the PPA Training courses I do, and I'm now putting the readers content where my mouth is.
Merricks Media is set to publish an edition of Greece Magazine comprised entirely of reader created content – the first time that this has ever been done in the UK.
The November issue will become "Your Greece Magazine" reflecting the unique issue content; which is entirely provided by the readers themselves. From tips on how to find the best tavernas in Crete to how to avoid paying too much for your taxi in Athens, every article has been crafted by the readers of Greece magazine.
The magazine is the only publication targeted at the hundreds of thousands of people in the UK who regularly travel to or have a second home in Greece, and is dedicated to delivering the best coverage on travel, food, culture and the Greek lifestyle.
The innovative approach has already driven a massive response, with hosts of pictures, articles and features piling onto editor Karen Birch’s desk.
"We are really excited about being the first magazine in the country to do this", says Karen. "Our readers have always been very passionate about every aspect of Greek life, and are always keen to write in and tell us what they think. We’ve been overwhelmed by the response to the special issue."
John Weir, Publishing Director at Merricks Media said "Its vital that magazines serve their communities as closely as possible, and extending the conversation we are having with our readers into a dedicated issue seems a natural progression. We know this will result in more sales of the magazine and a better relationship with our audience."
The November issue of Greece magazine goes on sale on the 30th October and is available at all WH Smith stores priced £3.95
Friday, October 10, 2008
Friday, September 26, 2008
Those that do read digital magazines, however, are increasingly citing environmental friendliness as a reason for subscribing to them. Which is why Zinio, the digital magazine vendor, has launched GoReadGreen.com, a Web site where more than 200 publishers—including Hachette, Wenner Media and Reader’s Digest—have agreed to offer some 50 million free digital magazine subscriptions to build digital awareness and, in turn, save the financial and environmental costs of publishing copies of magazines, the vast majority (70 percent by some industry estimates) of which die at the newsstand.
“We’ve seen thus growing undercurrent of consumers who see the benefits of sustainability,” Jeanniey Mullen, executive vice president, chief marketing officer at Zinio, said. “But the general consumer walking down the street doesn’t even know what a digital edition means—they think it means the Web."
The launch is part of Zinio’s Read Green Initiative, the company’s large-scale call-to-action to inspire consumers to embrace an environmentally sustainable alternative to traditional print.
“We wanted to do something on a large-scale that would take the barrier of cost away,” she said, “and allow consumers to sample digital editions, while publishers can provide the environmental benefits of digital and not incur the huge waste—and huge cost—of printing magazines.”
A portion of the proceeds, Zinio says, will go toward purchasing “eco unit credits” and “more trees.”
Friday, September 19, 2008
John Menzies Digital is pleased to announce its latest partnership with ITV Consumer, to provide the ITV Digital Newsagent. The partnership gives ITV.com users access to digital versions of top UK consumer magazines to download to their computers. Titles are available to buy via the www.itv.com/digitalnewsagent site.
Caroline Knight, Commercial Partnerships Manager, itv.com says: "With a large user base, many of whom are web savvy and interested in entertainment and lifestyle based content, itv.com is ideally placed to help John Menzies Digital reach a wider audience."
The launch will be supported with an excellent introductory offer enabling consumers to try the service for free: every user will be able to download a magazine of their choice from the site simply by registering on the site. The offer is available until the 30th September 2008 or the first 10,000 downloads, whichever is the earlier.
The service will be promoted to consumers through online ads to be shown across itv.com, and in their regular email communications. With over 100 magazines currently available and a raft of new publishers expected soon, there is a wealth of both lifestyle and specialist content to complement subject areas on itv.com.
Simon Clough, Managing Director of John Menzies Digital, says: "This is a particularly exciting partnership for us, because our service is all about providing high quality content digitally, something that ITV.com have proved themselves to be at the forefront of."
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Nxt Manchester is a 41 page digital title that has been sent to 100,000 business people in Manchester and surrounding areas.
The launch issue offers business stories, interviews and profiles.
Operations manager Amber Stephens said “the actual number of people who view the magazine will be a lot higher” than the 100,000 distribution list. “Using the NXTBOOK format we are able to gather extensive stats, so it will be interesting to monitor this in time for the next issue,” she added.
Tuesday, September 02, 2008
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
In the post he makes the point that "The future of digital magazines belongs to content publishers who use them to capture a unique content niche, crawl into it, define it, dominate it, and attract a unique audience to it. Once that audience is established, advertisers will follow. "
And to make the point he cites the example of digital magazine Avantoure - which he thinks may just cut the mustard commercially.
We shall see..
Wednesday, August 06, 2008
To recap for those that missed it ; the music industry has fought a protracted (and largely unsuccessful) battle against its own users in the form of P2P download sites, eventually having to settle for cut price legal downloads (like iTunes) or advertising –led models like the Sony BMG experiment.
The same copyright battle now looks likely to break out in magazine land, with several industry bodies (MPA,PPA etc) threatening to sic the legal hounds on anyone found sharing their members content without permission. I’ll remind my partner of this next time she takes home a free magazine from a show for her mother.
This sort of argument is becoming as ludicrous and ineffectual as the posted warnings at concert venues about “no photography allowed”. Er, camera phones anyone ? Face it – technology not only enables people to share content, it actively ENCOURAGES them to do it.
And lest the publishers cry “copyright” too loudly, think on this. Virtually every magazine now contains snippets from the web, photos from You Tube, comment from forums and reader submitted photos. To whom does that copyright belong precisely ?
Talking of the Press Gazette, this news should say it all. A magazine for print journalists now online only - this internet thing might really catch on.
Tuesday, July 01, 2008
Unfrtunately, I think Bob skirts a couple of important points - like the split between consumer and BtoB publishing - but its interesting thinking nonetheless.
Resistance to digital magazines is futile.
I've been inundated lately with e-mail requests about the viability of digital magazine editions. The letter that put me over the top was from an old and dear acquaintance, who is a senior production director, that said, "Digital editions of magazines will never get traction with the magazine-reading public." This is a ridiculous attitude. And if it is yours, too, bury it now with other ridiculous ideas like the world is flat and man will never fly.
Perhaps Jeff Gomez, author of the book "Print Is Dead," put it best when he wrote: "To expect future generations to be satisfied with printed books is like expecting the BlackBerry users of today to start communicating by writing letters, stuffing envelopes and licking stamps."
Do we expect magazine readers to become any less sophisticated as time and technology roll by? Things change, platforms evolve, business models adjust, and people's habits change, too. History is loaded with once-successful personal methodologies that are now nothing but antiquated dust. This is not a discussion of whether or not print will survive.
That is moot. What is important is how people will read in the future. Gomez's comment is spot on. How people read today gives us the smallest inkling of how people will read in the future. I'd be curious to know the number of words read on a computer screen (including PDAs, cell phones, e-readers, etc.) versus those read in print. Digital editions will play a central role in the magazine business's future success. They are growing in popularity, and eventually will become ubiquitous. The only thing holding the format back presently is a perfect substrate.
Computer screens are good for the task, but not perfect in their portability, flexibility and readability in various lighting conditions. What the industry is waiting for is a substrate that can match the robust nature and inherent abilities in digital editions. The new technology is not far-off science fiction. The future is here now; it is just not widely distributed. Amazon's Kindle, Sony's Reader and several others are e-paper devices, and they are available now.
These devices will not go away; they will only get better and more advanced at what they do-distribute content. In 2011, there will be full-color versions of e-paper products released. By 2025, e-paper devices will be the predominant way in which people read. And they will most likely be reading some formulation of digital-edition technology. Perhaps we need to look at it this way: When will the digital page be more user-friendly than the printed page?
Is it so impossible to foresee a future of comfort and ease holding a full-color, flexible screen that has the ability to project any book or any magazine with greater richness and depth of coverage than its printed predecessor? Gomez hypothesized that, "It's not about the page versus the screen in a technological grudge match. It's about the screen doing a dozen things the page can't do." Digitized words should count for more. "What's going to be transformed isn't just the reading of one book, but the ability to read a passage from practically any book that exists, at any time that you want to, as well as the ability to click on hyperlinks, experience multimedia, and add notes and share passages with others," Gomez noted. The same logic holds true for magazines. This is not a Hamlet-type argument, "to read or not to read."
It is a question of what format/platform we will be most comfortable reading in the future. Nowhere in history do you find society willingly going backward. As Jerry Garcia is reported to have once said, "You are either on the bus or off the bus."
Monday, June 30, 2008
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
The "world-first" digital magazine, emailed to readers free each fortnight, will contain magazine and TV content, with test-drive videos, photographs, articles and reviews.
Dennis promises "TV-style entertainment, web-style topicality and magazine-style authority and depth" in the new format.
Launching on July 17, the digital magazine targets ABC1 men aged 30 and over.
iMotor will draw on content from the company's motoring titles evo, Auto Express and Octane.
"iMotor is our latest digital magazine offering, using the same pioneering page-turning technology and video platform as Monkey and the recently launched iGizmo," said Bruce Sandell, head of new product development at Dennis Publishing.
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
But with only 1 percent of subscribers opting to pay extra for the digital version, Texterity has decided to offer the digital edition free to print subscribers.
“We’ve been trying for years to sell digital subscriptions instead of print,” said Martin Hensel, president of Texterity. “That really hasn’t worked.”
Hensel believes the new model will give publishers other ways to encourage trial, communicate with subscribers by email and lower publishers’ renewal costs. “Digital is a way to have low-cost sampling,” he said.
He expects that in a year’s time, 15 percent of subscribers will opt to add the digital edition.
Texterity also launched a new site, Coverleaf.com, where readers can browse through and buy its clients’ digital editions. Texterity’s roughly 70 consumer magazine clients include Meredith Corp.’s Better Homes and Gardens; and Condé Nast’s Bon Appétit.
Thursday, June 12, 2008
Thursday, June 05, 2008
Monday, June 02, 2008
John Menzies Digital has launched a service to enable customers to buy and then download digital versions of the UK's top magazines.
The Magazines on Demand service has already signed up the likes of publisher Bauer to the service. It will also be white-labelled to established etailers, including WHSmiths, with which it has already done a deal.
The Magazines on Demand website works in conjunction with free-to-install software and enables users to download the latest issues of magazines at any time as well as viewing, storing and searching digital magazines bought from the site.
John Menzies, which sold its retail business to WHSmiths in the late 1990s in order to concentrate on its distribution business, claims the key feature of the system is the ability to save magazines to a USB stick.
The USB stick system will enable customers to read the magazines on any computer, even one without delivery software installed.
Simon Clough, managing director at John Menzies Digital, said, "We're delighted to be working in partnership with WHSmith to launch this new service. The concept of buying digital magazines is in itself very new, but bringing such a huge range of top titles together in one place for UK consumers is unprecedented
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
No surprise--digital magazine readers are embracing digital technology, with 76% saying they prefer to contact a company via its Web site (versus the phone or mail).
The most popular ways to read the magazines are on a desktop (74%) or laptop (61%). A small but growing group (6%) reads digital magazines on the iPhone.
Thursday, May 15, 2008
Saturday, May 10, 2008
And actually, its the potential sales from hundreds of thousands of single copies at a low price, rather than a few subscriptions, that will have Barmes and Noble salivating. Late into the digital game, they've been looking at a way of getting into the "Long Tail" business and hey presto, its been delivered.
Not the last experiment in this field, I think.
Friday, May 02, 2008
Gartmore is launching the title to keep its professional investors abreast of its new investment products, while providing current information about the financial markets.The digital magazine will be mailed to Gartmore's network of professional advisers on a monthly basis, which will be accompanied by a print version of the magazine.
The title will also feature video and audio segments from Gartmore's team of fund managers.
Thursday, April 17, 2008
There's no limit on how many different magazines subscribers can download, although they can only download two copies of any given issue.
Wednesday, April 09, 2008
The 32-page title will be sent electronically to Littlewoods’ 40,000 betting customers and will build on the content from Catflap Magazine, which we reviewed last year.
The one-year-old company has also signed a deal with razor manufacturer King of Shaves to produce a digital contract magazine called The Knowledge.
In addition to Catflap, the company also published In Golf We Trust, EatCricket and Scrum of The Earth.
Which is about rugby in case you wondered.
Friday, April 04, 2008
Thursday, April 03, 2008
Digital magazines don't work. That's according to the publishers of a UK surfing magazine, Drift. Ignoring the deliciously ironic title for a minute, let's have a look at the facts - and the product.
Drift is a surfing magazine, based in the South West of England, and despite targetting surfer types - young, internet savvy and above all eco friendly, it isn't cutting the digital mustard.
Ultimately,according to editor Howard Swanwick, is that "I think digital magazines have had their day. As a medium to put features in, they don't work." That evidently is why he's switching to print - more costly, less accurate, less measurable and er, less eco - friendly.
Now I need to flag up immediately that I used to work with Howard in my dark and distant past, but despite that I have no axe to grind. I just think he's got it wrong.
Its about the ads Howard, and you haven't got any, so switching it to print is going to make f*** all difference. Plus, I'm afraid that your site is (1) slow to load (2) confusing in terms of downloading the digital product and most importantly (3) the text on the magazine is in places unreadable.
Back to the drawing board I think...
Thursday, March 27, 2008
The magazine, sponsored by Timberland, is available as a free download on iTunes and at thefader.com.
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
The magazine, dubbed Opinionated, will feature 25 opinion articles, 750-1,000 words each, in every issue, offering social and political commentary on domestic and international economics, affairs and pop culture.
Evidently, the magazine will contain no ads and will operate on a subscription revenue business model. Opinionated, published on Mondays, will cost $.49 an issue, or $1.49 for a monthly subscription.
The publisher, Tribune, says it is developing other magazines for Kindle as well on topics including personal finance, travel, food and popular culture.
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
The survey of 1500 Zinio subscribers in the US, has revealed some interesting findings.
Some 37% of people who have purchased at least one digital magazine said that they were more likely to read an ad in digital format than in print.
According to Rich Maggiotto, CEO of Zinio, the aesthetics are part of the reason that readers find the digitized ads more appealing.
"When you look at a full-page spread online, you don't have a gutter anymore," Maggiotto said. "There's a depth to the imagery because of the way the ad fits on the screen. And you get what was the original intent of the creative director without the disruption of a gutter."
But the interactivity also draws them in, as some 59% said they found digital magazine ads easier to engage with, and 84% said the digital ads were more beneficial because of the ability to click-through. "Pretty much 85-95% of the ads in the print edition have a URL, but readers have to remember it or write it down, then go online and type it in," he said. "With the digital version, they're one click away."
As for raising reader awareness about the digital magazines, the survey found that e-mails (from either Zinio or the publishers themselves) were most effective. Banner ads came in second, while search traffic came in third. About half of the respondents were ages 25-44 and skewed heavily male (80%). Some 63% were married, and about 40% earned at least $75,000 annually. In terms of technology, nearly 60% said that they were "first to try" new products.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Monday, February 25, 2008
IN A MOVE TO LEVERAGE the global distribution of the Internet, digital magazine publisher Zinio has team with a unit of Havas Media to extend the reach of consumer magazines into Europe and Latin America. The deal, which combines Zinio's digital magazine publishing platform with Acceso, a powerful media management system jointly owned by Havas Media and ISP, is expected to greatly expand the number of consumer magazine titles utilizing Zinio's system from about 850 currently to more than 2,000 over the next year, executives at the companies said.
The move comes as Zinio, already the magazine world's dominant digital publishing platform, has been seeking to step up its profile on Madison Avenue. Earlier this month, Zinio raided Jeanniey Mullen, a top digital media executive at WPP Group's OgilvyOne unit, to serve as chief marketing officer.
By tapping into Acceso Group, Zinio gains both expanded global reach, as well as access to a system utilized by some of the biggest consumer magazine advertisers. Acceso, headquartered in Barcelona, Spain, is used by Havas Media to provide media content intelligence services and communications management solutions for leading multinational marketers such as Vodafone, Repsol, Nike, Coca-Cola, Telefonica, Nabisco, Volkswagen Group, Wrigley, Sol-Melia and BBVA.
"We believe that Zinio's superior technology and online marketing services for publishers will drastically increase the appeal and usage of digital publications," Alfonso Rodes, CEO of Havas Media, stated. "We want to be ahead of this process and be able to fully exploit for our clients the possibilities of this promising interactive channel,"
Thursday, February 14, 2008
Gizmo, a free fortnightly digital magazine, launches on March 11 and, like Monkey, will be delivered to readers' inboxes.
The new digital offering will mix elements of magazines, websites and video to review and demonstrate products. Gizmo will target ABC1 men aged 25 to 45 and is up against print heavyweights Stuff and T3.
Monday, February 11, 2008
The promotion also allows members to read Spin Digital for free for 12 months.
The January issue of Spin Digital was posted exclusively on MySpace about three weeks ago in a "soft launch"; the official launch comes with the February issue, including interviews with Pete Doherty and Lenny Kravitz.
The digital version hews close to the print magazine itself, unlike Spin.com, where the magazine's editorial staff posts breaking news and updates. Spin Digital includes links that take readers to musician profiles on MySpace as well as the iTunes Store, where they're able to buy songs mentioned in the magazine.
The digital edition also includes audio samples, video footage, and interactive ads that can, for example, take them to a company's official Web site.
Spin president Tom Hartle boasted: "We are already seeing a dramatic increase in readership from the soft launch--over a quarter of a million page views in the first week alone." He added: "Now instead of just reading about a new band or an album, readers can hear what they sound like, get involved with the community and purchase music, all with just a few clicks."
The magazine is also hoping that Web exposure will drive print subscriptions. According to Hartle, renewals and new subscriptions increased 50% in January 2008 compared to the same month last year.