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Archive for Digital Magazine Publishing

Digital Magazine Publishing posts focus on the digital revolution that is taking place for digital magazines.

In this section, you will find posts on components for creating and publishing the best digital magazines.

Free Download: Consumers are telling us loud and clear what they want—are you listening? How much would you pay for that information? To find out how you can improve your digital magazine rapport with subscribers, claim your FREE digital copy of our 2018 Mequoda Magazine Consumer Study, today.

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Selling Subscriptions While You Sleep

I woke up this morning thinking about all the great ways we’ve discovered to sell subscriptions on the Internet. Yes, these are the things that I dream about. The idea that while I’m deeply asleep, the systems we manage are busily selling subscriptions to magazines and newsletters and premium memberships that include all sorts of benefits to customers who are awake and spending money while I’m sound asleep makes me a happy guy.   Continue

8 Ways to Sell Digital Magazine Subscriptions

It’s amazing to look back to just a year or so ago, when digital magazines were still something of a novelty. Today, it’s a given that print publishers will soon create a digital version of their product if they haven’t already.
  Continue

When Web Magazines Go Wrong

When most people think of digital magazines, they narrow their focus on digital magazine apps that can be found in a digital newsstand or app store, but data shows that apps aren’t where users want to digest premium magazine content.   Continue

Digital Magazine Marketing: 7 Ways to Promote your Digital Magazine

If you’re making plans for your own digital publication, it behooves you to also plan how to make money from it with strategic digital magazine marketing.

After all, buying a list and mailing a big direct mail package, in hopes of getting a bunch of people to subscribe as we all did in the old print days, is rather like trying to sell 21st-century tablets themselves at an old-fashioned general store where hardware, ladies’ hats and pickles all shared the same space, and the proprietor fetched everything on your list, then wrapped up your purchases in brown paper and twine.   Continue

5 Expectations of Web Magazine Consumers

Web magazine consumers like to read their magazines like they read their news – online.
Users are becoming more accustomed to viewing magazine content in the form of web magazines. Web editions can be displayed on any mobile or desktop device, so users are as familiar with the interface as they are with a web browser,   Continue

10 Digital Publishing Tips and Strategies for Multiplatform Magazine Publishers

Only five years after the advent of the tablet, strategies for successful digital magazine publishing are starting to sort themselves out and deliver measurable results. Of course at Mequoda, we’re all about documenting these things so digital publishers don’t have to re-invent the wheel.

Here are 10 things you must do if you want to join the ranks of millionaire publishers … a goal we think is worthy of all digital publishers today.   Continue

30 Great Sources for Magazine Trends

We aim to be one of the best sources for magazine trends online, but we do it with a whole lot of help from our brothers and sisters in the industry.

Below we’ve compiled a list of the best portals, the best influencers, and the best reports on magazine trends available online. If you have more to add, please share your favorites with us in the comments.   Continue

Best Digital Magazine Publishing Software You Can Use to Launch Your Digital Magazine

Digital magazine publishing software is important; which option are you using?

Publishers have been trying digital magazine publishing software during the last few years in hopes of creating the best digital products for their audiences. And like everything else in digital magazine land, digital magazine software has evolved at light speed since we made our initial recommendations in January.

Here’s our latest (opinionated) look at the magazine software landscape.   Continue

Download the Mequoda Magazine Consumer Study Today

Mequoda ran its first ever digital magazine consumer study in 2014, polling US adults with Internet access. At the time, the biggest finding was that 20% of respondents reported currently reading or subscribing to digital magazines on their tablets. Back then, 20% was a huge number.

In 2015, we conducted another study with triple the sample size   Continue

8 Online Magazine Design Best Practices

Online magazine design has taken a number of steps forward in recent years, starting with the launch of the first-ever web magazine in 2014 called I Like Crochet. An online magazine, also known as a web magazine, is a premium publication that is read through a magazine subscription website. In our definition, it is not the same as the homepage of a magazine, where content is freely distributed, unless that content is metered by a paywall.   Continue

How to Create a Bulletproof Magazine Business Plan for a More Profitable Future

As you know, having an online portal for your information is essential for growth. Using the web to publish and distribute content and not just serve as an extension of your brand is critical. But this is a new beast, and to be prepared, you must plan. This holds true even if your business has survived the last 50 to 100 years.   Continue

6 Good Reasons to Offer a Web Magazine Library

Do you think a 24/7 online encyclopedia of information is a product people might subscribe to? Would they be willing to pay more for a subscription to your magazine if it included access to all your archived content? The latter is usually the reason why publishers decide to create a digital archive of their back issues,   Continue

3 Best Practice Updates for America’s First Web Magazine

I Like Crochet has improved upon their already best-practice web magazine with collections, clubs, and previews.
It’s genuinely thrilling to be in the publishing industry at this moment and time. Think about how one of the defining factors of millennials is that they have been alive to experience life with and without immediate access to the   Continue

How to Start an Online Magazine With These Five Strategies

Knowing how to start an online magazine requires first understanding the differences between an online magazine and the dozens of other publishing models available to you in the 21st century.

These differences range from the obvious – a comparison with print products, for instance, is pretty straightforward – to the more nuanced: say, discerning an online magazine from a digital magazine. What could possibly separate the two other than terminology?!   Continue

Subscription Marketing: How to Sell News, Instructional, and Advisory Content

In subscription marketing, the type of magazine content you sell, matters. However, the strategies you use to sell it, work across niches and industries.
In our 2018 Mequoda Magazine Consumer Study, we discovered that out of all the paid types of magazine content available online, adults in the US pay for news, most. If you’re in   Continue

5 Paid Newsletter Best Practices for the Digital Age

These days, when people talk about newsletter best practices, they’re usually referring to free email newsletters, used as a marketing tool to drive inbound traffic to websites. But because some of us are old-time journalists here at Mequoda, we also think fondly of paid newsletters, a classic journalistic form that survives today in the digital era.   Continue

Beyond Paywalls: 3 Ways Magazine Publishers Sell More Subscriptions

Since most magazine publishers are competing for these dollars and losing the battle, the need for revenue from subscriptions increases every day.   Continue

15 Reports About Digital Magazine Publishing You Should Bookmark

We often hear about predictions for digital magazines; how they will grow, the revenue generation expected throughout the industry and the time frames associated with these numbers.

These predictions are important, as they help publishers better prepare for the future. What’s more interesting, however, is discovering how people who are already consuming digital magazines are enjoying their experiences.   Continue

Perfect Your Web Magazine Today

What do you think are the essential elements of the perfect digital magazine?

If you think back to Gutenberg and the printing press, magazines are still being produced the same way now as they were then. We have a long way to go. The technology necessary to fully utilize the Internet as a principal marketing and distribution platform is available   Continue

Proof that Digital Magazine Readership is Up, Print is Down, and What to Do About It

As preferences for digital magazine consumption go digital, here’s a list of all the ways you can improve your multiplatform editions.
Last week we published this year’s 2018 Mequoda Magazine Consumer Study. We’ve been running this study since 2014 to analyze digital magazine adoption, and have come across new interesting findings each year:

In 2014, 20% of respondents   Continue

The Kind of Apps People Want: How to Get a 5-Star Rating on Your Magazine App

As tech industry observers like to note, the world of apps is wild and wacky. There are almost two million apps in the Apple and Google app stores. If you pick up or click to pretty much any tech publication these days, you’re guaranteed to see at least one app review, to help bewildered consumers navigate this crowded field.

Of course when you read those articles, you’re getting a lot of personal opinion, and in tech land, much of that turns out to be excitement over flashy technology – no surprise there. So what kind of apps do people want, really? For magazine publishers, the answers are fairly simple.   Continue

Double Your Magazine Revenue Today

Are you still selling your magazine on one platform? Sure, print magazines smell good and even look good on a coffee table, but the most successful subscription publishers we know are leveraging more than paper to increase profits.
What are they doing exactly? They’re adding a web magazine, back issues and special collections to their magazine offers and are creating an   Continue

Let’s Clarify: What Is a Digital Magazine?

Magazines are designed to be read from front to back. They have covers and a table of contents. Magazines are arranged in a series of articles. Portals are not meant to be read from front to back, and are in no way linear. Users may begin on an article they found through search and hyperlink their way across the site in a matter of seconds. There is no true table of contents, although there is arrangement in the form of categories, topic pages and related articles.

So what is a digital magazine? It’s a bit of a hybrid.   Continue

7 Great Web Magazine Libraries We Love

How these innovative publishers built web magazine libraries that are comprehensive, user-friendly and make an easy up-sell from print.
A web magazine library is an archive of your content going back many years, likely since the beginning. When done right, you can upsell a substantial number of would-be magazine subscribers to this higher-end, and higher priced product that requires   Continue

The Perfect Digital Magazine Template

Magazines are designed to be read from front to back. They have covers and a table of contents. Magazines are arranged in a series of articles. Compare that with other media, where the articles are arranged with taxonomies and hyperlinks, and are not linear.

Hyperlinking is not linear. Any medium that enables or encourages the reader to bounce around among hundreds or thousands of articles is not a linear medium. What’s more, humans desire closure, which magazines provide. A reader can say “I have read the April issue of Vanity Fair. I finished it on Sunday.”
  Continue

Subscription Marketing on the Internet Just Got a Little Easier

If you’ve ever joined a club, purchased a membership, or even became part of a team, you understand the benefits of mutual collaboration and teamwork. This year, our goal at Mequoda was to help our Gold Members run and grow their subscription marketing and publishing businesses even more by creating a publishing network of like-minded publishers.   Continue

Subscription Marketing: How to Market Your Super Club

If you publish a variety of subscription products for a single audience, you have the makings of a super club. Super clubs are the easiest money you will ever generate because their high profit margins are driven by content you already own and an audience that already trusts you and your brand.   Continue

Should You Put Subscription Revenue First?

Headlines have been brimming lately with news publishers like The New York Times, The Guardian and Wired taking back their profits with paywalls and paid content. The New York Times made 60% of last year’s revenue from subscription sales, The Guardian’s 800,000 subscribers are now accounting for more revenue than advertisers, and Wired has followed their lead by instituting a new $20 annual subscription. It’s clear that publishers are no longer afraid to charge for content, and subscription revenue goals are at the forefront. And I think there are three reasons for it.   Continue

Creating Digital Magazines: Four Ways to Monetize Your Efforts With a Free Archive

“I simply don’t understand the opportunity,” one veteran magazine publisher told me at a recent industry conference. “My magazines are sponsor-driven. My issue archive includes hundreds of back issues. I have all these vendors and partners offering to digitize my back issue archive and make it available online. But I don’t have a clue how I make any money if I do it. Near as I can figure, my digital magazine archive is worthless.”

The magazine industry feels it is on the edge of a Renaissance. Digital magazines are the hot topic of industry events, digital magazine software platforms abound, and massive retail partners including Apple, Amazon, and Google are seducing magazine publishers with their siren songs.

“I simply don’t understand the opportunity,” one veteran magazine publisher told me at a recent industry conference. “My magazines are sponsor-driven. My issue archive includes hundreds of back issues. I have all these vendors and partners offering to digitize my back issue archive and make it available online. But I don’t have a clue how I make any money if I do it. Near as I can figure, my digital magazine archive is worthless.”   Continue

Subscription Marketing: How One Publisher Doubled Revenues in 12 Months

Three ways membership offers beat subscription marketing offers
We are big proponents of both web magazines and web libraries, plus various collections and special issues that can be derived from them to create robust membership products.
Last September, we had the privilege of taking over all membership and subscription marketing for the Biblical Archaeology Society, a long time   Continue

5 Metered Paywall Best Practices for Generating More Revenue from Premium Content

One of the biggest moving targets in Mequoda best practices is the metered paywall.

The biggest question we get is, how much free content is enough? And you have to be careful when you’re a special interest publisher comparing your own paywall model to the New York Times or the Financial Times who have historically given away a lot of free content. Why? Because they publish a lot more content than you. But even the New York Times recently scaled back from giving away ten articles, to giving away five articles, and their reasoning was to increase subscriptions.   Continue

How to Start an Online Magazine from Scratch

Although we work with many established legacy publishers, we also work with publishing startups. In fact, these startups benefit from our years of work with legacy publishers teaching them how to start an online magazine. Meanwhile startups can teach a thing or two to the digital retread legacy publishers.

If you’re a publishing startup, or are getting into the business of publishing, then an online magazine probably isn’t on your mind. To be clear, an online magazine is a web-friendly version of your magazine. It’s in HTML and works like a website. It cannot be held in your hand, unless you’re in the web browser of a tablet.   Continue

5 Ways Web Magazines are Better than Print Magazines

Don’t scoff—we truly believe that web magazines can be the ultimate platform for periodical content for most magazine publishing brands. The problem is that, as we’ve covered in prior weeks, most web magazines aren’t living up to their potential. We are very close to destroying magazines as a medium by the way our industry is transporting them to the web.   Continue

10 Facts About Digital Magazine Publishing and One Very Important Piece of Advice

Digital magazine publishing is and continues to be the current and next frontier, with unlimited revenue stream options coming from creative use and integration of text, images, video, social content, native advertising and so much more.   Continue

Web Magazine Worst Practices: Are Your Digital Strategies Dooming Your Magazine?

The magazine industry has lost their way.

It’s been a long time since the dawn of digital publishing and publishers bringing their content online, but at this point we hoped that the industry would catch on and be rigorously testing their digital products.

Unfortunately so much has stayed the same, and while many magazine publishers seem to be working towards putting together web magazines, most have failed, as we’ve explained in recent posts documenting our journey through more than 300 magazine websites and what they think are web magazines.   Continue

5 Best Practices in Digital Magazine App Publishing

Now that so many publishers are issuing digital editions, it’s time to take a look around and quantify some best practices that we’ve noted in researching apps and digital magazines.

First, let’s do some definitions. Terminology is changing daily, as it always does with new technology and new products, but for now we should at least attempt to clarify a few things. Some of these definitions come from outside Mequoda, but others are our own preferred definitions that serve to clarify some of the confusion in the industry right now. Your mileage may vary!   Continue

5 Ways Your Web Magazine Design is Failing Your Readers

I have complete confidence in saying this: “your web magazine design is not very good.”

And why does this roll off the tongue so easily as such a blanket statement? Because we’re in the midst of a massive research study on the state of web magazines, and out of 300 of the top B2B and B2C magazines, only 13 had what we consider to be a best-practice web magazine. We were sure the study would encompass at least 100, but we’re currently on the hunt to fill that number out to at least 25 and are finding hope in—surprise—niche magazines.

  Continue

Decoy Pricing: The Biggest Little Secret in the Publishing World

How would you like to increase your subscription revenues by almost 60%?

It can be done, and it’s not magic. All you need are a paid subscription website, a couple of other great products to sell and one secret: Decoy pricing.

More and more publishers are discovering this secret. And it’s not a new concept. You might know of it as the “contrast effect.”   Continue

5 Ways a Web Magazine Library Will Save Money While Generating More

Recently Google publicly told publishers that they strongly encourage flexible sampling with their paywalls, through the use of metered paywalls and lead-in. You’re likely familiar with metered paywalls where the user gets to access a certain number of articles before being asked to subscribe, and the lead-in paywall shows some content of an article but not all.   Continue

Publishers Reimagine Digital Strategy for Continued Success

Today we begin with a look at Working Mother, which has seen a big growth in traffic since a recent digital strategy adjustment. Folio: reports, “Working Mother’s new digital strategy appears to resonating with its audience; according to data from Omniture, its website saw an 84 percent increase page views in August compared to the same month a year ago, and a 155 percent increase in unique visitors.”   Continue

10 Reasons to Add Video in Magazines Now That You Can

When a magazine goes digital and becomes an app, or a web magazine, it becomes alive. And that’s scary for some publishers. Suddenly, ads become more valuable to advertisers because they can be clicked. Content becomes more rich because it can also be hyperlinked to references and authors on the web. Live content can be embedded with video in magazines so the editorial content doesn’t stop at the final publish date.

And if you’re not ready for that kind of transition or development project, then your magazine has suddenly become ancient.

It used to be that sharing vertical video branded you an amateur, but not anymore. Startups are specializing in it, publishers are pushing it out, and consumers are, well, consuming it, according to TheMediaBriefing.com.   Continue

A Newsletter Platform Worth Investing In

The newsletter platforms you may be familiar with are often print and PDF formats, as most newsletter publishers haven’t gotten hip to the newsletter app format, and neither have their consumers.   Continue

The Best Digital Magazine Software Isn’t What You Think

How you think about digital magazine software needs to change if you want your subscriber base to grow
“Eventually, they’ll become like sailboats. They don’t need to exist anymore. But people will still love them, and make them and buy them.” – Kurt Andersen, a former editor of New York and co-founder of Spy, on the future   Continue

How to Write Native Content Advertising for a Magazine Sponsor

Learn how to write more effective native content advertising for a sponsor and start getting paid more for content

According to Business Insider data, the amount advertisers are spending on native advertisements has risen from $4.7 billion in 2013 to a projected growth of $21 billion by 2018.

Consumers have always disliked ads that are disruptive to their user experience,   Continue

Magazine Clubs are on the Rise and Here’s Why

There’s a new trend happening in the magazine world, and it’s the magazine club model. Publishers everywhere are adopting magazine clubs, an all-inclusive membership model that can offer everything from total access to magazines, to video archives, to VIP event access. The 160-year old Atlantic, for example, is just one publisher who has recently joined the magazine clubs party. Beyond their print and digital products, they launched The Masthead. Subscribers get access to exclusive content, and their mission, which is being “sold” to subscribers, is to “fund the future of sustainable journalism.” The introductory price? $12 per month, versus their annual print + digital price of $34.50.   Continue

The 9 Ultimate Digital Magazine Features

How do your digital magazine features stack up to users’ expectations?
Contrary to what you’ve probably been thinking, the ultimate digital magazine is built in a browser, not an app. That’s why web magazines are skyrocketing to success, because users are quickly figuring out that they’d rather use a web magazine than an app magazine.

Users are   Continue

5 Pubs Who Abandoned Print For Digital-Only Magazines

Varying experiences from publishers that made the switch to digital-only magazines and portals (and came back to tell the tale)
Digital-only magazines have had their ups, downs, and (in some cases) its “in-betweens.” While some digital magazines have remained powerful and influential after going digital, others have since been discontinued. And some of them end up seeing   Continue

Our 2016 Mequoda American Magazine Reader Study & Handbook

Take this information to the bank … 2016 Mequoda American Magazine Reader Study & Handbook & Handbook polled 3,241 U.S. adults with internet access and found that nearly 42% of them are reading digital magazines, up 13.8% from 2015.   Continue

Should You Publish a Magazine in Print? Digital? Or Both?

At a recent networking event amongst publishers, the owner of a publication for teen health asked a Mequoda team member if it was worth launching a print magazine to go with her ad-driven online presence. She already had other print publications, but this niche, teen health, geared towards a younger generation—would it be too passe’?

The short answer is that we’ve seen it work, but testing is worth the investment. One of our clients launched a new print magazine from their popular online portal last year and is now generating thousands of new subscribers every month.   Continue

How to Create Evergreen Magazine Content As a Reader Service

A recent copy of National Geographic featured a story that showed a man, hanging off the side of a mountain, dangling from a several hundred foot rope ladder. You couldn’t see the bottom of it, because it was covered in mist, but you could see his face, reaching toward the next ladder step, covered in bees.

This man, dubbed the “last honey hunter” climbs massive cliffs in Nepal to get “mad honey” derived from the Himalayan Cliff Bee that pollinates nearby rhododendron patches, which is toxic to humans, making the honey a psychedelic and often used medicinally.   Continue