Magazine Publishing Strategy: Tech, Email, Advertising

Personalization, sales structure, and data-driven publishing highlight latest trends in magazine publishing strategy

Multiplatform content, audience development, and internet revenue models. Attracting and converting. That’s the crux of magazine publishing strategy – don’t make it harder than it is!

At Mequoda, we can distill all of this down to two modules: ACEM, which are the essentials, and CAROTME, which is the roadmap. To wit:

  • Attract
  • Capture
  • Engage
  • Monetize

Those are the core principles. But how to execute them? Via these strategies:

  • Content
  • Audience
  • Revenue
  • Organizational
  • Technology
  • Measurement
  • Economic

A few recent Publishing Executive articles show these strategies in action. Let’s take a look!

Where Tech Meets Magazine Publishing Strategy

Publishing Executive‘s FUSE: The Convergence of Technology & Media conference was last month, and many lessons were learned, along with many new tools coveted.

“While technology has completely disrupted the market, it also enables publishers to gather richer audience data, deliver highly-personalized content to reader interests, and drive greater engagement. With more granular user insight, publishers can deliver more qualified audiences to their advertisers,” Ellen Harvey writes.

“The imperative to create valuable and focused content is greater than ever. FUSE conference chair Jeffrey Litvack made that abundantly clear in his opening keynote. He observed that publishers are increasingly competing with Google and Facebook for digital advertising revenue, and are losing the battle. Publishers can’t beat these tech giants on scale or reach, but they can compete on engagement and rich first-party data. That level of engagement has value to advertisers. Litvack cited a recent comScore study, which reported that ads on publishers’ sites are 51% more effective at driving consumer actions than ads on non-publishers sites. Advertisers benefit from being adjacent to valuable, relevant content.”

Personalized Email Marketing Can Drive Audience Engagement

Now here’s an article after our own hearts: Tips on maximizing email marketing and tracking. Publishing Executive has the roundup.


“First thing’s first. It’s important to remember that email personalization doesn’t stop at the greeting. Giving your audience the impression that the email they received was tailored just for them requires a bit more effort than saying “Hi, [insert your name here].” To increase the relevance of a loyalty-driving newsletter or email campaign, you have to understand your audience members — not just their demographic data, but their behaviors and preferences as well,” Nate Kristy writes.

“Which subscribers prefer imagery over long copy? Which are more likely to click on links to articles with tips than full-length interviews? Building a rock solid database with subscribers’ contact information, interests, and behavioral patterns allows better segmenting and targeting. Marketing automation software and CRM systems that collect data are the perfect tools to help with this, keeping your processes efficient and your data up-to-date. An ideal marketing automation solution will pull information about your subscribers directly from your CRM and will make it easy to send customized emails to hyper-targeted lists.”

Time Inc. COO on Digital Advertising

If you’re on the sales side or C-suite, we highly recommend Publishing Executive‘s recent interview with Time Inc. COO Mark Ellis. Here’s a snippet:

“I think that the role of media sales has evolved generally speaking from being a full on EQ role (where you just have to know how to develop relationships and find buckets of money) to being a combination of EQ and IQ. The programs that we’re building have to be creative, but they also have to show ROI. They all have targeting now and back-end metrics and things like that,” Ellis tells Denis Wilson.

“Overall revenue growth is going to be our KPI. Digital revenue growth or digital as a percentage for overall business will be a KPI. We have got softer KPI’s, like getting wider and deeper inside of organizations and talking to different types of people. I kind of describe it as having lots of PT boats riding around the ocean and trying to take down an aircraft carrier. It just can’t happen. You got to band together and be a larger organization. Getting wider and deeper inside of a company instead of just going to the logical people that buy media would be another metric. Number of deals in a pipeline would be another metric. New revenue streams. Breaking business with advertisers we haven’t done business with in the past. So we’ve got a lot of different metrics of success we’re looking at.”

Is your magazine publishing strategy working? Where are your problem areas? Let us know in the comments!

To read more about magazine publishing strategy and other industry news, visit Publishing Executive.


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